Did you know? You can drastically reduce the likelihood of car theft by having the right information.
Car insurance is the first step to protecting your automobile, but there’s more you can do. We’ve prepared some simple steps you can take to help deter against theft and keep your vehicle safe and sound.
Why are cars stolen?
While every case is different, the three main motivations behind car theft remain more or less the same.
To be sold
The re-sale value for stolen cars or their parts on the black market can be quite high, as identification numbers can be easily altered or removed.
Stolen cars can take thieves from point A to B quickly and are often later abandoned.
To commit crimes
Stolen cars make perfect getaway vehicles for other crimes, such as robberies or break and enters.1
Now that we’ve shed some light on some of the motivations behind car theft, it’s helpful to recall some of the preventative measures we can all take each day to keep our vehicles safe.
Almost every driver knows how important it is to be careful of the way you leave your car when it’s parked. But many drivers may not know that, on average, a car is stolen every 7 minutes in Canada.2 While it may seem like common knowledge, recapping some of the basics to parking safely can be valuable.Never leave your vehicle unattended when it’s running. And when you do leave your vehicle, always ensure that your doors, sunroofs and trunks are locked and windows are closed. Just as importantly, try to ensure there are no house or car keys visible, or any other important valuables in plain view of passersby. Items like money, jewelry or electronics can often attract unwanted attention to your vehicle, whether it’s locked or not.3
Reminder: Generally, your car insurance policy covers items that are attached to your vehicle itself. This includes its normal parts as well as permanently installed accessories, like roof racks and winter tires. All other items that aren’t essential for the operation of the vehicle could be covered under your home insurance policy. Any items that don’t belong to you are covered by the insurance policies of the people who own them.
Your Car theft prevention checklist
It’s always a good idea to follow this checklist if you’re driving anywhere, whether it’s nearby in the neighbourhood or much further away from home.
- Don’t leave car keys visible in your house; keep them with you or in a safe spot.
- Consider additional anti-theft measures such as a steering wheel lock, sound alarms and vehicle trackers.
- Ensure that GPS and other devices are put in a safe location, out of sight.
- If you park in the same lot often, try to park in a different spot each day.
When you factor in court fees and deductible costs, vehicle theft is more than just an inconvenience — an expense that ends up costing Canadians close to $1 billion each year.4 Extra diligence and awareness can keep your vehicle protected when it matters most.