It used to be that there were very few defenses against getting your car stolen. There was the car alarm, which hopefully would just scare away the car thief, or at least encourage a person nearby to investigate or call the police, but there was no guarantee when it comes to the car alarm. The first defense ever was locking windows, but it did not take very long for thieves to figure that one out. Then there was the bar lock that a driver could place on their steering wheel, which would stop a car thief from being able to drive the car. But, these days most car thieves have figured all of these out, and they almost put up no resistance for them. Now, technology has finally caught up and there are a variety of anti-theft devices for cars that are on the cutting-edge, and at least for now, car thieves are playing catch up.
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a car is stolen in the United States of America about every 43 seconds. And if you have never had a car stolen, the odds are that it has at least been attempted on your vehicle. There are some factors to consider when thinking about which kind of anti-theft device you should but, such as how much are you willing to spend on the device? what kind of car do you drive? and what kind of area do you live in? These factors all play a major role when it comes to making a purchasing decision in regards to an anti-theft device in your car.
Before we get into the latest technology in anti-car theft devices, lets run down the basics first. After all, the basics are your best weapon against getting your car stolen. Keep all valuable out of sight inside the car, no wallets, no money, no valuable electronics. Hide all of those things, or just take them with you when you leave your car, if possible. Common sense will do much more than most anti-theft devices, because if a burglar has no reason to break into a car, then they probably will not. Most car burglars are looking for stuff inside the car, rather than the car itself.
A steering wheel lock is still the most common device used by car owners. When buying these, make sure to buy the latest version, as they are the best technology-wise that are available on the market. This is one thing you do not want to skimp on.
Picture Credit Hebets McCallin
A kill switch is one of the latest things to be in cars. Sometimes they are already built into the car, and other times you may need to install one. The kill switch disables the car until it is deactivated, by flipping the switch. So, it is important to put the switch in only a place that you know, as it will make it difficult for a thief to find it when attempting to steal your car.
Vehicle tracking systems, like OnStar and the like, are the latest and greatest in anti-theft technology, as there is nothing a thief can do to turn it off. These Global Positioning Systems (GPS) will track your car at all times, and can be accessed by the car owner and the police. Many of these systems will actually alert the car owner or the police themselves, when they feel that something suspicious is going on. These work by hiding a transmitter in the car, which most thieves will be unable to locate, or even to recognize. One company in particular, LoJack, works directly with law enforcement. Better yet, these companies claim that cars are recovered more than 90% of the time when using them. Sometimes, you can even just buy a sticker claiming to have the system in your car, even if your car does not, and this can be a deterrent against theft in its own right. It’s tricky, but it works.
This article was written by Karl Stockton on behalf of R. David Ayers, Jr.