10 Ways to Avoid Car Theft

by | Mar 26, 2024

Ways to Avoid Car Theft

Our vehicles represent mobility and freedom. So when your vehicle is stolen, it’s not merely a loss of steel, plastic, and aluminum, but also your ability to easily and conveniently live your life—appointments, kids’ activities, work, and more. It’s a pervasive problem, with more than 1 million cars stolen in 2022, an increase of 7% over the prior year, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau. Prevention is key. Below, find a list of the top 10 ways to avoid car theft.

10 Ways to Avoid Car Theft

There are, of course, many more ways to prevent car theft. But these are some of our favorites. Why? Because they’re very effective.

#1: Lock up and close up no matter where you’re parked.

You’d be surprised how many people don’t lock their vehicle doors when they run into the convenience store or even in their driveway or garage. Don’t be lax on this. An open door is an invitation to a thief looking for easy pickings. Also, don’t be that person who darts into the store while leaving your vehicle running, even if it’s “just outside” the front doors of your favorite convenience store. All it takes is a matter of seconds.

In addition, it may be tempting, especially in the hotter months, to leave windows open or even cracked a little bit to allow some heat to escape. But the temporary discomfort of a hot car isn’t worth the risk.

#2: Light it up.

This is not the time to skimp on lighting, as it can be a very effective deterrent. Motion lights, both outside and inside your garage, can startle a criminal and send them running.

#3: Don’t tempt thieves by advertising.

As you run errands, it’s tempting to drop bags of purchases on the seats, leaving your mobile phone or purse in the front console. Even if you’re gone for a few minutes, it’s too long to do that. Leaving valuables like these visible is an invitation to steal not only your vehicle but the “extra score” of what’s inside.

Instead, place purchased items in your trunk so they’re out of sight, and do this before you stop at your next destination. If you do it after you’ve parked, criminals canvassing a parking garage or lot will see there are valuables worth checking out in your car versus others.

#4: Keep your keys with you (and not in your car).

By this, we mean that you should not leave your keys in your vehicle even if it’s “just outside” or in the garage. This remains the case even if you lock the vehicle with the keys in it. All a thief has to do is break a window to get in and take you and your vehicle for a ride.

In addition, don’t make it even easier for criminals who might get their hands on your vehicle by keeping your vehicle title in the glove box. At the very least, place it somewhere unusual that you and your family members know to look (not in the glovebox). Titles hand thieves a lot of power.

#5: Spare keys shouldn’t be handy.

It’s tempting to buy one of those magnetic boxes that attach under your wheel well to store an extra key or to tuck one in the middle console or glove box. But don’t fall for this temptation—convenience isn’t worth the risk. In addition, if a friend or family member is using your vehicle, do not leave the key on top of a tire. It’s as easy to “grab and go” for a criminal as it is for your teenager or spouse.

#6: Be smart about where you park when you’re out and about.

Not only is it smart to park in a trafficked, visible area for your personal safety, but for your vehicle’s safety as well. If you’re parked on an incline or decline, park your vehicle in park or in gear (if you’re driving a manual) and turn the tires toward the curb. This may sound small, but it can create more hassle than a thief thinks it’s worth to tow your vehicle.

#7: Get an anti-theft system.

This can be as simple as “The Club” that attaches to your steering wheel—an easy visual deterrent—or as advanced as an ignition cut-off system or alarm system. There are more choices than ever, so do your research.

#8: Invest in the right security systems.

While many vehicles come with a vehicle alarm or security system, you can build on this with the right home security system. That way, you’ve got double the deterrents against would-be thieves.

Deep Sentinel’s video surveillance system allows you to position security cameras in a variety of areas in your home, including garage entry areas and even inside the garage. If someone attempts to access your vehicle—be it in your garage or driveway—Deep Sentinel’s live security guards will address them via interactive audio capabilities to stop the thieves in their tracks. And, if that doesn’t deter them, Deep Sentinel will confirm the crime in progress and call local law enforcement, ensuring a prompt response.

#9: Plan your trips in advance.

If you’re venturing somewhere new, check out the directions before you get into the car. If you notice the route takes you through any high-crime areas, look for alternate routes so you can sidestep these ripe opportunities to be a victim.

#10: Keep your distance.

Out of all of our ways to avoid car theft, this is perhaps the most unexpected.

When you’re driving, and especially at traffic lights, keep several feet of space between your vehicle and the one in front of you. This is just good safety sense, but it also gives you room to move if you’re the victim of a “bump and rob.”

In these cases, a criminal team may bump your vehicle from behind, expecting you to hop out to assess the damage. This then allows one of the criminals to jump into your vehicle and drive it away. Instead, if you’re bumped from behind, you are within your rights to move to another area and call law enforcement for assistance.

The Key to Avoiding Car Theft

All these ways to avoid car theft—and more—come down to one thing: Make stealing your car more trouble than it’s worth. Some upfront effort can go a long way in ensuring you and your vehicle aren’t the victims of crime.

Deep SentinelA
Deep SentinelA

Need a Solution that Prevents Crime?
Deep Sentinel is the only security technology that delivers the experience of a personal guard on every customer’s home and business. Call 833.983.6006 for your free security consultation.

Share This