The Home Office

Story of the film

This film tells how the Home Office used humour to share practical ideas to the British public in a creative way. They needed to constantly remind people about the key messages, and to do this they used TV, DM, and outdoor to drive mass awareness. This campaign used a single idea to unify three complex crime ideas and drove a payback of £14 for every £1 spent.  


Theft costs British society an estimated £9.5 billion per year. Many of these opportunistic crimes can be easily avoided if people take simple preventative measures. The challenge was to find a single campaign idea that could motivate a core target audience most at risk of crime and demonstrate measures they could take to prevent it. Using a single, humorous campaign idea, executed through TV, radio and print, the strategy was to dramatise how thieves saw their victims as stupidly careless. The campaign reduced the cost of crime to the taxpayer by £189 million and generated a payback of £14 per every £1 spent.

Judge’s comment

Acquisition Crime

Acquisition Crime was a great campaign that used clever research and media and exhibited proof that was overwhelming. It was nice to see a change of approach in the way crime is tackled; the strategy was to use humour instead of fear to prevent opportunistic crime.

Dan Cobley, marketing director, UK, Ireland and Benelux, Google

Film contributors

Titles correct at the time of publish date

  • Sharon Sawers, Head of Marketing, Strategy and Insight, The Home Office
  • David Gamble, Creative Director, Saint
  • Simon Labbett, Creative Director, Saint
  • Alice Huntley, Insight Director, RKCR/Y&R


Awards: 2008 IPA Effectiveness Awards, Gold Award

Client: Home Office

Entrants: RKCR/Y&R, The Home Office

Authors: Alice Huntley, RKCR/Y&R

Contributing authors: Sharon Sawers, Emma Roberts, The Home Office

Media used: Media used TV, national and regional newspapers, radio, out of home, internet, interactive, DM, PR

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