The truth about car theft is that about 50% of them would have been prevented if the vehicle owner had taken precautionary steps, such as turning off the ignition when the car is not in use.
With a ‘relay attack,’ which is a relatively new trend and has contributed to the rise in car theft, criminals are now able to carry out more sophisticated car theft techniques and work around some current car security technologies, such as immobilisers and keyless entry systems.
Auto theft is a reality you must be well on your guard to prevent. Below are valuable tips and guides to help you.
Always Keep Your Keys Safe and Accessible
If your vehicle was stolen, one of the first things the police would ask is if you have all the keys. Don’t cultivate the habit of putting a spare key under the wheel-well or other places in your vehicle -, as many people do.
The problem with that is that it’s just like hiding your house key under your front doorstep. Criminals know most people do that. It’s frustrating to be locked out of your house, but it’s nowhere the pain you’ll feel and the trouble you’ll go if you’re robbed of your vehicle.
Remember too to get your spare key back from anyone you’ve it but who no longer has a need for it.
Secure Your Car Keys in a Blocking Pouch
With the increase in car burglaries, why not take up your car key safety a notch up by securing it away in a blocking pouch? If your car uses a keyless entry system, make sure to keep all the keys away from doors and windows.
Keeping your car key in a sealed pouch, box or tin will ensure the signal cannot be hijacked from the outside and used to open your vehicle by a burglar. Don’t forget to take the same precaution with any spare set!
Secure Your Car
To prevent car theft, always remember to close and lock your car doors and windows whenever you park your car – even if it’s in your driveway. This may sound simple enough, but it’s also easy to grow complacent with security basics like this.
Although it makes your car’s first moments awkward, fight the urge to leave windows cracked in the summer. This safety note is particularly important if you have a teenage driver in your household.
Turn Off the Wireless Signal of Keyless Fob
The wireless signals can be switched off on some keyless fobs. So if you have a keyless fob, look in your car manual to see how to turn it off. Contact the carmaker if the information is not available in your vehicle manual.
Don’t Hold Values in Your Vehicle
Don’t keep possessions that may be eye-catching to criminals such as an iPad in your vehicles. Even something as ‘little’ as a small change on a car seat is enough to tempt some burglars to want to break into your car. And once a thief has been able to gain entry into a vehicle, he’ll want to go all the way and steal as many valuables as he can before an alarm goes off. Read more here inthenews.co.uk.
So if you must leave a valuable in your car, consider putting it in the trunk. But be careful no stranger watching you do so. Better still, If you can afford it, simply leave your valuables at home.
Parking in a well-lit location can also discourage crime, but driving close to entrances of buildings and surveillance cameras in the parking lot provides extra security for your vehicle.
Parking garages are also safe parking spaces for your car as it won’t get damaged. However, you might be compromising your vehicle safety if you park in an isolated garage. If you’re parking your vehicle in a garage, try to park as near the attendant or a surveillance monitor as possible.
Use a Physical Anti-Theft Device
Approximately 40% of insurance companies offer a high discount for vehicles fixed with anti-theft systems. That’s how important these devices are in thwarting car theft attempts. Thieves are also looking for easy targets, one they can get away with quickly and easily without attracting notice to themselves. Solid anti-theft solutions are fitted with vehicle immobilisation systems that prevent burglars from hot-wiring the car. Researching anti-theft tools might save you some money on vehicle insurance and save you the nightmare of a car theft.
Utilise Auto-Recovery Technology
If despite all your best efforts, your car still got stolen, using an auto-theft recovery device might help you get your car back before it gets damaged.
There are lots of auto-recovery systems that use GPS technology to track your vehicle and transmit real-time information to the police or other law enforcement agencies. These systems also remotely stop your car from being switched on when stolen, and can send a signal to your vehicle to safely slow it down.
Reprogramme Your Keys
When you purchase a second-hand vehicle, there is a possibility that not all the sets of the car keys will be handed over to you. So, reprogramming the keys is vital to prevent burglars from accessing your vehicle using stolen keys. If you’re unsure, get your keys reprogrammed immediately so previous owners won’t be able to access the vehicle.
If the car is not in use, turn off the ignition.
Most car thefts would be prevented if the owners always remember to keep to basic security checks such as not leaving the engine running when the vehicle is not in use.
Leaving your car running when you’re not behind the wheel attracts the notice of a burglar. Besides, doing so is illegal in some countries or states.
Etch Your VIN on Your Windows, Mirrors and Headlights
Etching your windows, headlights and mirrors with the last seven digits of your Vehicle Identification Number (or registration) ensures that anyone attempting to steal your car’s identity will have a difficult time selling it off or even using it.
Noting and following these important anti-theft tips, alerting the police and taking the right insurance cover are effective and stress-free ways to keep your vehicle safe and your mind at peace.