A CROWTHORNE female was subjected to a terrifying ordeal when a thief snatched her mobile phone from her in broad daylight, leaving her shocked and shaken.

The victim, who was making a call at the time, was attacked during the early hours of Friday, March 1.

The thief then ran off with her red Nokia 8210 mobile along Cambridge Road at 6.30am.

This latest attack comes as an epidemic of mobile thefts is sweeping the country.

More than 100 mobile phones have been reported stolen in Crowthorne, Sandhurst and Bracknell since the beginning of this year.

But of the 105 stolen, only four have been traced by police.

PC John Oblein, crime reduction officer for Bracknell Forest, said the dramatic rise in thefts was partly due to the number of people who now own a mobile phone.

He said: "Thieves steal items which have a use and mobile phones are one of the easiest targets because there are so many in use.

"Basically, they are portable, available, valuable and there is a need.

"The Government states the main culprits are young offenders and the most common place for thefts are from pub bars, pub tables, jackets left unattended or supermarket trolleys.

"As always, we urge people to take more care."

PC Oblein added: "We hope the number of thefts has now reached a peak and our new methods of tackling the problem will see a reduction in crime.

"We are also pleased to see that all of the mobile phone networks have now agreed to co-operate by cutting off mobile phones as soon as they are reported stolen."

Police are urging mobile phone owners to attend a four-day phone-securing surgery in Princess Square, Bracknell, in the week before Good Friday.

People are invited to come along and have their phone marked with special permanent holographic markings.

Police were unable to supply any further details of the incident or the victim at the time of going to press.