The statistics are staggering:
A vehicle is stolen every three minutes in Canada …that’s over 170,000 vehicles each year!
It’s Not Just In The Movies
Car theft movies like this might make the problem seem like something that would never affect you, but auto theft is a global problem and it can affect anyone at any time. Organized criminals have established theft rings in major Canadian cities, stealing and smuggling vehicles into foreign markets. Car thieves know how to disable most vehicle alarm systems in a matter of minutes, and they know exactly what markets will buy the type of vehicles they steal.
This has proven to be not only a problem for high-end and rare automobiles, but also for expensive contractor’s equipment. How can you protect your vehicles from smart and skilled car thieves?
Steps To Protect Your Vehicle
1. Never leave your keys in the ignition. Almost 20% of all stolen cars have keys in them.
2. Always lock your car (even in your own garage)
3. Park in well-lit and busy areas
4. Leep your vehicle registration certificate and proof of insurance on you at all times – not in the glove box.
New Technology Can Help
Some newer cars use coded keys that make it impossible for thieves to start your vehicle without the key. Known as immobilizers, these electronic devices interrupt the power to the starter, ignition and fuel pump until the correctly coded key is used.
Other anti-theft measures include steering wheel locks, alarms, parts marking and vehicle tracking systems. Tracking systems, either GPS, GPS-cellular or wireless-based systems, are becoming popular. When a vehicle is stolen, the system is activated and a monitoring centre is notified of the location of the stolen vehicle. The tracking company then dispatches their recovery team to the vehicle.
GPS and GPS-cellular systems typically use satellites to alert officials to the location of the stolen vehicle. Not all systems can track vehicles underground, in parking lots, or in shipping containers. Wireless-based systems boast that their coverage is broader and their signal is stronger so they can track vehicles where others cannot.
Whatever you do to make a thief’s life harder is one step closer to preventing a loss.