Low Tech Anti-Car Theft Tips
text size: A- A+
Maybe it is because normal people tend to get less cautious, or because the holiday spirit is instinctively against stealing or harming others. Regardless of the reason, cars and houses are the prime targets in the holiday season for thieves looking to make a quick buck.
There are of course a number of things you can do to prevent your car from getting stolen. We are not talking here about using complicated anti-theft devices, but about implementing a few basic behavioral patterns which will certainty spare the headache and troubles of having your car stolen.
MY CAR IS A THIEF PROOF SUPERCAR
Regardless of the car you won, remember that the security systems fitted into them are man made and, as any man made item, another one, of equal and opposite force has or will soon be created. Car alarms can be disabled, the car's computer can be tricked into accepting another key than the right one and security software can be hacked.
Basically, there is no thief-proof supercar. Remember that thieves don't always go for the car itself, but for its contents as well. This makes the countless security systems put there to prevent the car from being stolen redundant if the only thing the thief wants is the purse on the back seat.
So, we're not going to talk about immobilizers, OnStar or steering wheel locking devices. We're going to try and remind you a few common sense tips which may render the most advanced stealing technology useless.
WHAT TO DO TO MAKE SURE YOU'RE NOT A VICTIM
Remember car thieves can be everywhere, watching you and your car. There's no need to get paranoid and start chasing people on the street for peaking at your car, but a decent degree of distributive attention might help you spot the danger before it spots you.
Choosing the parking spot – as any unlawful activity, car stealing requires a certain degree of intimacy. Dark, low-traffic areas are the perfect setup of a car or its contents to get stolen. Avoid parking the car in places where there is little light and little traffic. Choose instead densely populated areas, with plenty of other cars around, even if this means circling the parking lot a few times before finding a spot.
Exiting the car - make sure that once you leave the car, you take all your possessions with you. Don't leave your wallet or purse laying on the right seat or in the rear. Avoid placing dark objects, which may resemble a briefcase, in the car and leave it unattended. Once you are out of the car, make sure you have taken your keys out of the ignition.
Locking the car – locking the car can turn into an extra obstacle for the car thief. Don't leave the car unlocked and remember to roll up the windows and close the sunroof, if any. Make sure the trunk is also closed. If the car has an alarm system, arm it.
Unmovable objects – if, by any reason, you have with you an object you can't or won't take out of the car, place it in the trunk. When doing so, try not to be obvious about it. Remember however that the trunk of the car is perhaps the most vulnerable and placing and object there doesn't make it thief-proof, At best, it might limit the damages brought to your car by the clumsy thief.
Another method of stealing from cars has become somewhat of a plague in countries around Europe. A driver may at one point see he or she has a flat tire, one which cannot be explained. While trying to replace the tire, the thieves will move to the opposite side of the car, slowly open the door and reach for whatever is inside. By the time police gets to the scene, the driver learns that the flat tire had been punctured by the thieves.
This usually happens at traffic stops, with the thieves then following the car of the victim until it stops. Make sure you are not followed when you have a flat tire. Avoid changing the tire, especially if the flat is suspicious in nature, by your own (unless, of course, you have no other choice). Take the car in at a service to complete the operation.
UP NEXT: Chinese Carmakers Looking to Buy Pininfarina Tip: navigate with ← and →
Cars we've tested recently
all testdrives →