Japanese police: Lost property reports hit new record in 2023

Japanese police say nearly 30 million items of lost property were reported last year, a new record high.

The National Police Agency says about 29,787,000 lost items were reported nationwide in 2023, an increase of about 3.15 million from the previous year. That's the highest figure since police began keeping such data in 1971.

The agency attributes the surge to an increase in foot traffic since COVID-19 restrictions were lifted in May last year. The previous record was set in 2019 when about 29,750,000 items were reported.

It says the most common lost items are small electronic devices, such as wireless earphones and mobile mini-fans.

The agency also says there has been an increase in lost property reports for reusable shopping bags, heated tobacco devices and mobile battery chargers.

The police speculate that people are carrying more things with them as downsized products become more popular.

They are urging people to pay more attention to their belongings, and to file a report as soon as they lose something.