10 tips, tricks and ideas against auto theft
Let’s start with the good news: auto theft is on the decline. Between 2006 and 2012, the number of stolen cars per year was divided by 2. Despite this, around 265 cars are still stolen every day on average. This situation is annoying and frustrating for those involved.
Particularly well organized gangs are rife today. They go hunting with modern technical equipment, smash electronic immobilizer systems with their laptops and bypass acoustic alarm systems in no time. Even the police admit, “It will probably never be possible to prevent auto theft completely. But there are tips, tricks and ideas to make life difficult for thieves.
1) tear gas
This spring, Japanese automaker Toyota filed for a patent in which the car recognizes who is sitting in the car using the smartphone it carries. If an unauthorized person enters the vehicle, a mechanism emits tear gas and makes it impossible to move. So don’t leave your smartphone on the kitchen table!
2) Spray paint
In the United States, some car owners install invisible UV paint traps in their cars. This allows the police to identify thieves of purses, car radios or other valuables, even if they got rid of these items during their escape.
Inoculation of components is also possible with such UV ink. The sprayed components contain DNA in microparticles that can be traced to a registered vehicle and visible under the microscope. The flourishing trade in stolen used parts can thus be limited.
3) A snitch
It is much easier to install a GPS tracker that you hide in your car. If the car moves away from where it is without permission, the device transmits the position of the car in real time to the smartphone. This makes it easy for the police to catch thieves. As an alternative to GPS tracking, it is also possible to hide an old smartphone in the car.
4) Cut off the fuel supply
This is already standard equipment for high-end vehicles. But even mid-range cars can be fitted with a system to shut off the fuel supply. If a theft is detected by the GPS tracker, the car can be stopped by remote control.
5) hidden cameras
GPS trackers and the remote stopping of vehicles are more and more often supplemented by a hidden camera system. As soon as a person sits behind the wheel, their face is transmitted to the cell phone by a live stream. These triple systems are available both as a simple plug-in version for the cigarette lighter and as a permanently installed model.
6) Aluminum foil
Keyless start systems promise uncomplicated comfort: you get in the car and start the engine without having to take the keys out of your pocket. However, modern car thieves take advantage of this convenience: one of the thieves stays near the key holder and scans the key signal as he walks past him, while his accomplice opens the car using the key. ‘a radio range extender. Those who want to avoid this can simply wrap their key in several layers of aluminum foil.
7) Check the doors
Other thieves try to override the car’s central locking function by means of an interference signal. The police therefore advise you to pay close attention to the sound or visual signal to see if the doors have been properly locked.
8) A protective film
Theft of valuables from cars has become much less common. But it still happens. Special protective films that can be glued to the side and rear windows make breaking the windows more difficult. Amateur thieves can be deterred in this way.
9) the hoof
A good old steering wheel lock or a wheel shoe are also effective solutions that prevent thieves from secretly and silently taking over the vehicle. Vehicle-specific gearshift locks are more expensive, but still more difficult to break.
10) Parking well
The more lighted and traveled the road, the safer the car. In contrast, a concealed and shaded carport is an invitation for car thieves, police warn. What you must not do either: place the vehicle’s registration document in the glove box. This makes it easier for criminals to transfer stolen goods abroad.
Changing your car’s equipment is a case-by-case decision. But checking the proper functioning of the central locking system, using an old smartphone as a GPS tracker, and choosing the right parking space are steps anyone can take to make life difficult for car thieves.
Cover images: © imgur / stewpid