posted 5 years ago

Survey Claims Most Stolen Vehicles Taken With Keys

Crime Survey For England And Wales 2011/2012 Findings

Forty-six percent of the vehicles stolen in 2011/2012 were taken when the “offender used a key”, the Crime Survey For England And Wales has revealed. This represented a significant rise of twenty percent over the previous record period (2010/2011). Why? Because modern vehicles tend to have highly sophisticated security systems that incorporate locks, alarms and immobilisers, etc. As such, the easiest means of access is often to steal keys from (say) property or coat pockets. Furthermore, twenty-two percent of stolen vehicles were removed after the offenders “forced” - or tried to force -  the locks and fourteen percent of criminals broke - or tried to break - windows. These figures were thirteen and five percent lower than the previous record period. Staggeringly, a further nine percent were removed while the doors were “not locked”. Of the vehicles stolen and returned to their rightful owners seventy-four percent were damaged. Of these twenty-six percent were “written-off/beyond repair”, twenty-two percent had “extensive damage”, and twenty-six percent had “moderate/slight damage”.

Minimise Risk Of Vehicle Theft

Some vehicles - predominantly late-plate prestigious models - are stolen to order then shipped abroad. Some of these are taken with cloned keys so it is important not to rely completely on the manufacturer's security system. The trick, therefore, is to enhance security with (say) a steering wheel or gear lever lock that take time and effort to remove. Stickers that claim the car has a tracking system are further deterrents (even if they lie). Furthermore, consider the best place to keep the key within your house. Criminals, after all, use hooks to pull them through letterboxes and windows. Other vehicles are stolen by opportunists who look for any suitable machine rather than a specific model to order. It might then be used for joy-riding, robbery, etc. As this type of criminal favours soft targets ensure that your vehicle is more secure than those that surround it. So, at the very least fit a high quality alarm and immobiliser – then consider extras such as a tracker that is monitored by the police. Next, consider the safest place to park which is somewhere criminals feel exposed and vulnerable. As such, try to find public places that are brightly lit and protected by closed-circuit television. At home - if the car is highly desirable - deter crooks by blocking its escape route with a lesser model. 

Items Most Stolen From Vehicles Revealed By Crime Survey

Not surprising when habitual car thieves get a slap on the wrist or community service. A much better option than 10 years for benefit fraud.

From the article an old 1995 banger seems the best bet to keep thieves at bay, with a tracker sticker and a mock up of a steering wheel lock as an extra precaution!