Every year, nearly 1.5 lakh vehicles are stolen in India alone. Out of these, only about few thousand are actually traced back, but often in un-roadworthy conditions, with many missing components. In the year 2014, a vehicle was stolen every 24minutes in India. Thieves have never been this efficient before, and your car/bike is more unsafe than ever. While the vehicle theft rate has skyrocketed, the auto industry still lacks the anti-theft technologies and enforcing bodies to safeguard the vehicles from thefts. If you want to prevent a car thief taking a joy ride in your precious vehicle, you need to take the required steps to avoid car theft.
How to Avoid Car Theft
Park in a safe place:
It’s given that a vehicle parked in a well illuminated, guarded and monitored spot is a lot less likely to be stolen. One should pay extra attention to the location, vicinity and environment when parking. Whenever you park your car, try and find somewhere that’s well-lit. A well-lit, closely guarded and spots under the local surveillance should always be preferred over shady and remote places. Don’t hesitate to spend a little for monitored parking lots with security guards. It assures guarding eyes for your vehicle in your absence. If you have to park the vehicle on the streets, opt for somewhere close to shops or somewhere closer to security cameras, for the thieves are more likely to be aware of the places to avoid stealing a vehicle from. If you can, park the car under a street lamp, even during the day - if your car’s left there longer than expected, it’ll be lit when darkness falls. Try to park in a well-packed area of the parking lot. Park the vehicle little further from the exits of parking lots, since thieves will likely have a faster getaway compared to a vehicle parked in a well surrounded zone.
Invest in the Security Systems:
When buying a car, do tick on the options of safety and security features like Engine Immobiliser, security alarm, central locking and GPS tracking. These devices go a long way towards car theft prevention. The Immobiliser is an electronic security device fitted in a car that prevents the engine from running unless the correct key is present. This prevents the car from being "hotwired" even if the thief enters the vehicle thus prevent vehicle theft. It would be helpful to have a security alarm system professionally installed in your car. Loud alarms will frighten car thieve, and some systems can be programmed to notify you or alert the police if your car has been tampered with. And even if the misfortune happens, a GPS tracking system can help signal the vehicle’s location to the police and help them recover the car sooner and minimise the damage to the vehicle. There is nothing like a gear or steering lock to deter thieves from driving away with your car even if they manage to get inside and start the engine. These measures will increase the amount time a car thief will need to get away with your vehicle, which increases the likelihood of him leaving your pride and joy alone. Such devices are well worth an investment.
Don’t leave valuables inside the car:
Never leave valuables like laptops, bags/briefcases, purses/wallets or cell or any other high-value item clearly visible area of your car. Use the car's glovebox or boot to stow the valuables as they can be an eye candy for the thief. Once the thief smashed a window to for the valuables, he might just decide to go all the way and take your car. Also, avoid leaving important documents inside the vehicle. Expensive satnav, entertainment screens and expensive accessories are the obvious attractions. So prevent your car being a thief magnet and avoid leaving any valuables inside.
Drive your car often:
A car is meant to be driven around. The pride and joy will go to places and yet is left to rot in the same place for days unattended. The preying eyes are likely to fall on them inevitably. A car lying at the same spot for many days is more likely to be taken for granted by the owner and assumed unwanted by the thieves. The rotting car is junkyard treasure for the thieves and therefore one must take a proper care and maintenance of the car. A well-maintained and well-used vehicle is passed by the auto thieves for easier victims.