Wednesday 7th August 2013
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Every year thousands of cars are stolen. It does not matter how sophisticated your car security might be; your vehicle could be next. If a thief wants your car, he will find a way. The most common way to steal a car these days is by stealing car keys. Sadly, once a car has been stolen, there is a 50/50 chance of recovery. If your car managed to be recovered, there is a strong possibility it might not be in the same condition as when you had it before it was stolen.

Ways of preventing your car from being stolen

Car thieves used to use force to break into cars until some complicated and refined securities were invented. Today, a thief's cue is to spot someone's car keys and take them without the owner's knowledge. Firstly, never leave your car unattended with the car keys in the ignition or leaving them on the car seat. Sometimes thefts occurred after the vehicles had been left running to de-ice during winter. Secondly, when inviting strangers into your house, avoid leaving your house and car keys hanging around. Thieves will spot and take them if they are visible. Keep them out of sight, if they can be seen they can be stolen. Always lock your house doors at all time. Often houses and cars are robbed during the daytime because people believe it is safe to keep their doors unlocked. It is not unusual to feel safe in your own home during the day without the doors being locked. However, it is when people take a short nap or working in their back garden when houses are broken into. Most insurance companies have been known to refuse to pay out if properties are left unsecured. Thirdly, avoid leaving house keys in the door even when your door is locked. Thieves know exactly how to prize them out through the letter box with a hook. Remove keys from window and door locks, but keep them in a familiar and safe place where all members of the family know where to find them in the event of an emergency. Never leave items such as keys, bags and money on show through a window, as these can prove a real temptation for an opportunist burglar. Thieves these days rarely take household goods. Professional robbers are after your car keys, and their approach is to take your car without you ever knowing.

Avoid buying stolen cars

Once a car has been stolen, they are usually dismantled as car parts are worth more to a thief than the car as a whole. However, this is not to say they will not sell a car in its whole entirety. A car has an identification number, which can be traced through the DVLA. Car parts currently do not have traceable numbers; it is for this reason that parts are easier and safer to sell. Thieves do not care about making huge profits; they are already making a grand profit selling stolen parts. Watch out for sellers who are frequently selling car parts cheaply and illegally. Report to the police if you are suspicious of such activities. For all non-emergencies and to report crime please call 101. To give information anonymously about crime, please call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. Buying cars from the second-hand market such as from a private seller on the internet could be risky. Never buy a car when the seller has just acquired the car. Be aware of deals that sound too good to be true. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. If in doubt, buy from a reputable car dealer. The benefits of buying a car from a trustworthy dealership is that you know the car will not have been stolen. Beside that, the car would have been thoroughly checked over. The car would be mechanically sound; HPI checked and come with at least 3 months warranty.

The most susceptible cars to be stolen

Unbelievably, the Ford Transit van is the most stolen vehicle in Britain. The reason behind this van being the highest target is that its parts are easy to sell and very popular. Apart from vans, the highest target car for being stolen is the Vauxhall Astra. The Astra is one of the best-selling cars in Britain so it stands to reason that this car is a target. Other number one popular cars that are most likely to be targeted by thieves are the Ford Fiesta, VW Golf, Vauxhall Corsa, BMW Series 3 and 7, Ford Focus, Audi A5 and A3, Ford Mondeo, Honda Civic particularly the R-Type, BMW X5 and the Land Rover Defender. None of these cars are in any particular order; they are all highly targeted by thieves. However, German luxury cars make up for the two thirds of stolen cars.