Knowing that the way to steal a modern car is to get hold of the keys, car thieves have adapted the way they operate.
Nowadays the thieves want your keys. By burgling houses, carjacking, test-driving cars for sale, getting into the unattended car at fuel stations and jumping in when a car’s been left running to warm up, they can steal what they like. Knowing that you don’t need to be able to break into a car to steal it, you just need the keys, the thieves can now steal cars to order, and they can steal desirable cars despite high levels of security. Once they’ve got the car and someone ready to take it off their hands, an untracked vehicle will be incredibly difficult to recover.
Most things you can do to prevent this are free and easy.
- Keep your keys safe, even at home.
It always surprises us how many people keep their spare keys in a cabinet marked ‘KEYS’, or on a hook next to the door. Also putting your keys onto a shelf or in a bowl next to your front door is just making a thief’s job so much easier. We hear stories of thieves using a hook through a letterbox to claim their prize like a hook-a-duck at a fairground. When out and about be extra careful, a set of keys on your restaurant table or in a handbag on the side of your chair are easy for a thief to take without being noticed.
- Do not leave your car alone with its keys.
How long does it take to get in a car and drive it away? Just a few seconds. Leaving your car running or with its keys in it whilst you quickly pop into a shop, or into a fuel station, or even when warming it up on an icy morning is easily enough time for a thief to take advantage.
- If you have a driveway or a garage then use it!
Insurance premiums reflect where your vehicle is parked. We love cars being kept away from prying eyes, hence us giving lower premiums for this.
- Do not inadvertently become a target for opportunist carjackers.
There are plenty of cars driving around and so a carjacker has a fast conveyor-belt of potential targets passing by. If you seem unappealing then they will not be interested – so make sure you drive with your doors locked and windows closed, especially at night.
- Keep valuables out of sight.
Remember that attacking a car is an effort and a gamble for a thief. If the potential rewards do not justify an attack then they will not make the effort. This means that if they believe your car contains anything of value then it suddenly becomes worth it. Do not keep valuables such as cameras, telephones, satnavs, and even clothing on display. Even evidence on your windscreen that a satnav had been mounted there is enough for some thieves to have a go. Furthermore, have you considered that if you have your ‘Home’ address stored on your satnav, then a thief then knows where you live and that you’re not there?
You can also consider improving your car’s standard security. Adrian Flux have worked closely with GAP Security to get good deals for our clients. You can call GAP on 0800 783216; let them know that you were sent as an Adrian Flux client to get the best deals on upgraded security.
We would welcome an increase in security and may even be able to offer a discount. But, as a modern thief is well aware, the easiest way of you preventing your own car from adding to our theft statistics is for you to recognise and understand that, to a modern thief, your keys are as desirable as your car itself.
If you would like to discuss any of these points further, then please contact our customer service team on 0344 381 6502.