How To [Catch A Car Thief]

Updated: May 16, 2019

Stolen Vehicle Technology

While technology advances rapidly, auto-theft remains a huge concern for millions of drivers nationwide. Thankfully, technology has begun to gift us the tools to prevent auto-theft and recover stolen vehicles. Unfortunately, technology to improve vehicle theft is also advancing.

Overall Prevalence Car Theft Nowadays

· It is estimated that over 750,000 drivers fall victim to car theft each year.

· Of these, 42% of stolen vehicles are never recovered.

· According to the FBI, 773,139 vehicles were stolen in 2017.

· That equates to 237.4 vehicle thefts per 1,000 individuals living in the U.S.

· That equates to a vehicle being stolen every 23 seconds.

· That equates to a loss of over $6 billion nationwide.

· The average monetary loss, per person, was $7,708.

Auto-Theft Recovery Tech

Tracking Systems

With the ease to access GPS, tracking systems have become increasingly popular. Systems like OnStar, LoJack and CarShield have become more affordable due to the prevalence of GPS. Nowadays, it is common for vehicles to be designed with tracking technology in mind. Many newer vehicles, like GM and Chevy, boast OnStar capability. Often, newer vehicles include a trial membership of OnStar or a similar provider.

In the event of a theft, OnStar can track the location of the vehicle in real-time. The system is activated if abnormal activity is detected, like a collision or theft. Emergency services are alerted, as well. Some tracking systems, like OnStar, have the ability to remotely slow down a stolen vehicle. The stolen vehicle’s speed is decreased gradually and safely, while police are alerted. These systems can also serve as a deterrent as most thieves know the vehicle is likely to be located within minutes.

Passive Immobilizers

A passive immobilizer system consists of an ignition key that has a microchip. In order to start the vehicle, the microchip is needed. Therefore, thieves that do not have the ignition key cannot start the vehicle. This option is on the rise, but often increases the price of a vehicle.

Personal Alarm Pages

A personal alarm pager functions similarly to the tradition car alarm. If the system detects abnormal activity, like a threat to the vehicle, the owner is alerted via an app. This allows for early detection, which can result in a faster response from the police department. The biggest upside to this alarm system is that owners don’t need to be within a decent range to hear the alarm go off – the alert is sent straight to the owner’s phone.

Home Security as Auto-Theft Protection

Installing a home security system can serve as protection from auto-theft. Home security systems can range from a simple doorbell camera to a series of night-vision, motion-detecting cameras. In each of these instances, activity is monitored. When abnormal activity is detected, users are alerted via an app – the same as vehicle tracking systems, like OnStar.

From a tablet or cell phone, users can see who is near their vehicle and home. If suspicious activity is confirmed, the authorities can be alerted within seconds. As the prevalence of home security systems rise, the awareness of the risk involved in theft also rises. Thieves are less-likely to attempt a robbery or theft if they’re aware of the car or home is being watched, even if from afar.

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