Things Making Your Car a Target for Thieves and Vandals
You may have read that car theft has been in decline in recent years. Well, while that may have been true a few years ago, the stats show that the number of cars stolen every year is on the increase again. Indeed, there were 873,080 auto thefts reported in 2020, and that’s an increase of 9.2 percent over 2019.
Then, of course, there are cases of auto vandalism to be considered. And the cars that are broken into and the contents being stolen. So, although modern anti-theft devices have helped reduce car crime. Your vehicle and its contents are still at risk if you don’t take precautions.
So, what can you do to make your car more secure? How can you prevent your vehicle from becoming an auto crime statistic? You can start by reading these ten things that make your vehicle a target for thieves and vandals.
1. Your Car is “Classic”
If your car is a classic, or perhaps just getting in on years, it is more at risk from theft. Quite simply, older cars did not have the sophisticated anti-theft devices that modern vehicles have. For example, your older car may not have an engine immobilizer, security alarm, or tracking device. So, it makes for easier pickings for a car thief. If your car is truly a vintage model, your vehicle might also be stolen for spare parts.
2. Leaving the Car Unlocked
Yes, it happens; some people don’t always lock their car when they leave it unattended. So, always lock your vehicle, even if you will only leave it for a few minutes. And of course, never leave young children alone in an attended car. Because, unfortunately, there have been more than a few cases of cars being stolen with kids still sitting in the back seat.
3. Leaving Your Car key by the Front Door
Dropping your car keys in a pot by the front door is a sure way to get your vehicle stolen. Unfortunately, car thieves know that lots of people leave their keys by the front door. So, if they can, the thieves will push a hook through the mail slot, grab your keys, and make off with your vehicle.
4. Parking in A High-Risk Zone
Avoid parking in unlit areas and places where few people venture. And, whenever you can, park where CCTV cameras will catch a thief or vandal in the act. But, of course, the safest place to park your vehicle is in your garage. However, when this is not possible, it would be best to consider the risks when you park your car and choose the safest spot you can find.
5. Leaving Valuables in Plain Sight
Smash and grab thieves will be on the lookout for any valuables left inside cars. So, don’t make your vehicle a target by leaving valuable items in plain sight. You may have insurance that covers the content of your vehicle. But you will still have the hassle of getting your car window replaced and cleaning up the mess. Remember not to leave any empty boxes in your car either. The thief doesn’t know if you already took that new phone out of the packaging you left in the car, so they will still break into your vehicle.
6. You Pimped Your Ride
Aftermarket tires and wheels are a prime target for thieves. So, if you have customized your car with a few extras, you might come back to find your car sitting on blocks. Unfortunately, customized vehicles are also generally more attractive to thieves because they are likely to contain expensive sound systems and parts. So, if you have pimped your ride, be extra careful with your car, or your four-wheeled pride and joy, or its wheels, could disappear.
7. Your Car Has Keyless Start
Keyless start is convenient for you, but it also offers thieves with a bit of technical know-how an opportunity to steal your car. The bad guys can use a signal booster device to relay the signal from your key fob to your vehicle. So, if you left your keys near your front door, they could enter and start your car. The best way to protect your keyless start car is to keep your key fob in a Faraday signal blocking pouch or box.
8. Your Car in on Thieves’ Top Ten Hit List
If you own a Honda Civic or Accord, you are more likely to get your car stolen. Those two models top the list of vehicles stolen in the US in 2020. The following two models in the list are Ford and Chevrolet pickups. The reasons why some cars are stolen more than others vary. In some cases, it is simply because some cars are easier to steal than others. In other cases, it comes down to the popularity of the vehicle. Either way, if your car is on the list of most frequently stolen autos, you might want to take some added precautions. Installing something as simple as a steering wheel lock, for example, could dissuade a thief from targeting your car.
9. Your Car Is Offensive!
Ok, so it’s difficult to understand how a motor vehicle can be offensive. But some people get wound up about the strangest things. Your bumper sticker with a political message, for example, could be reason enough for some people to vandalize your car. Or, if you park your ultra-expensive supercar in the wrong neighborhood, you can be pretty sure that it’s not going to be left untouched. So, the message is, if your car could upset anyone in any way, it will be more of a target for vandals.
10. Parking Inconsideratley
If you park too close to another car, or you block someone in, you might find yourself on the receiving end of some instant justice. And, taking an accessible parking spot is both wrong and likely to give you the wrong kind of attention again. So, watch where you park because it only takes a second or two for someone to run a key down the side of your car. But it can be costly to get a vandalized vehicle repaired.
Car thieves and vandals operate in every city and every town. So, even if your car has the latest anti-theft devices, it is advisable to take steps to protect your vehicle. Be careful where you park, for example, and keep your car keys safe. And never leave valuables in clear sight in your car. In addition, if you own an older model car, it will be worthwhile installing secondary security devices.
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