When I was a freshman in college, there was a rash of bicycle seat thefts. Not whole bikes--those could be secured to racks--just the seats. Thieves would take them and…well, I’m not sure what they’d do next. Maybe they acted out of sheer malice rather than in pursuit of some resale scheme.
This lock design is one of several that might prevent the theft of bike components. Sphyke, a company in Berlin, offers locks for front and rear wheels, handlebars and seats. They’re simple combination locks, but they may make theft hard enough to encourage criminals to seek easier prey elsewhere.