Gone in (less than) 60 seconds
Modern car theft is on the rise and while we can't prevent thieves from stealing our car, we can deter them. You may think your brand new car is less susceptible to theft but newer cars are still vulnerable, especially to thieves who are using hi-tech gadgets to access vehicles with electric locks.
The devices were originally intended to allow locksmiths instant access to a vehicle without a key, but now thieves are using easily obtainable equipment to intercept signals from key fobs.
Modern cars contain around 50 low-powered computers that criminals have learned to take advantage of and they can make off with a vehicle in less than 10 seconds, without causing any damage.
The Met Police recently shared figures on the number of electronic hacking thefts that took place in the capital last year; of the 21,000 stolen cars almost half (47%) were taken using this method.
Secure your car
So what can you do to deter thieves?
- Steering wheel locks are a good place to start as removing them can be too time consuming for a thief
- Most new cars are fitted with an electric immobiliser, but if yours doesn't have one it could be a worthwhile investment. The same goes forcar alarms
- Park with your wheels turned towards the pavement, and turn your wheels to the side in car parks and driveways - it will make the car harder to tow away
- Park in well-lit areas with CCTV, avoid unattended parking spots
- If you are leaving your car unattended for a long period, use a wheel lock (clamp)
- Remove your sat nav and wipe away any marks left on the window - thieves look for the rings left by the sucker and may attempt to break into your car in the hope the sat nav is still in there