5 top tricks to deter car thieves
More than a million cars are stolen annually and most of them are never recovered. A car thief takes only 60 seconds, so car security is important if you don’t want to be the next victim.
Thieves target prestige vehicles, ones you’d think had all the gadgets to prevent theft. But do you take these gadgets for granted? When locking your car check that you hear the central locking click and if your car has visual features, check they flash before walking away. If you don’t get these signs, your fob could be faulty. If you have a keyless system, check the catches have gone down.
Be careful where you leave your car – at home, if you have a garage, use it. If no garage is available, park your car as close to the house as possible, either on your driveway or on the main road beneath a street light. When you are out in your car, park in a safe area where CCTV cameras operate or in secure car park. Thieves are less likely to target your vehicle if they can be seen easily.
Don’t leave valuables visible in the car, as these add incentive for a thief to steal your vehicle. Satnav systems, laptops, mobile phones and items of clothing should all be hidden from view and don’t leave important paperwork that can be used for identity theft. If your stereo has a removable face plate, take it with you.
Add other security features such as a steering lock, or for a bit more money a tracking device. CCTV cameras could be installed on your driveway or vehicle safety cameras from http://www.backwatch.co.uk/ installed in your car. These can be linked to your mobile phone and can help catch anyone who does try to steal your car.
Don’t leave your car unattended with the engine running whilst popping into a shop or de-icing – these are opportunities for a car thief to jump in your car and drive away. If your car is stolen while it’s been left running, your insurance will be invalidated, then not only will you go through the hassle of losing your car, but you won’t get a pay-out.
Your car is an expensive investment and taking a few extra security precautions can keep your vehicle safe.