Auto theft prevention tips
‘Tis the season for… carjacking?
Believe it or not, summer, especially July and August, is the most frequent time vehicles are reported missing or stolen. Although it is not quite understood why this issue becomes so popular during the warmer months, consumers are advised to take caution this summer and do their best to keep their vehicle safe through our trusted list of auto theft prevention tips:
1. Always keep your keys with you
About 20 percent of vehicles that are stolen have the keys in the ignition. Whether you’re running into the gas station for a quick coffee or warming up your vehicle in the winter before driving to work, just don’t do it.
2. Park in well-lit areas, well-populated areas
Thieves don’t want to be seen. A professional thief can steal a vehicle in about 30 seconds. Make sure in addition to parking in a well-lit area, your car windows are always rolled up and doors are always locked.
3. Put packages in the trunk
Never, ever leave shopping bags, valuables or electronics in plain-view. Put them in the trunk or under a seat. Even leaving change in the cup holders can be an incentive for a thief to break into your vehicle.
4. Consider a deterrent
Many professional thieves are deterred after seeing anti-theft devices, such as a steering wheel lock, a car alarm or an immobilizer that will sound if someone attempts to hotwire your vehicle. Many stolen vehicles end up being re-VINed and sold in other countries for parts.
5. Keep your garage opener in the glove box.
Not only is this for the safety of your vehicle, but the safety of your home. Leaving your garage opener in plain sight gives thieves access to your home and they can use mail or insurance cards to learn where you live. Only about 50 percent of stolen vehicles are recovered.
6. Know popular car makes and models
The Honda Civic is consistently a target for thieves because of its parts. Civic parts are so easy to resell because the vehicle is so popular. While this shouldn’t be a reason NOT to get the vehicle if your dream has always been to own a Honda Civic, it’s important to know which vehicles are targeted more often than others. A car is stolen every 3 ½ minutes in Canada. Don’t be the next victim. Take a stand today against car thieves and protect one of your most valuable assets.