The New York Anti Car Theft and Fraud Association, together with the International Association of Auto Theft Investigators (IAATI) and corporate partners located throughout the world, are committed to increasing awareness and prevention of vehicle crimes while promoting proactive measures to protect vehicles from theft and burglary.
Law enforcement and insurance members report most vehicle thefts are crimes of opportunity and therefore preventable. Simple steps taken by owners and drivers can help to reduce these crimes of opportunity. These steps include:
- Locking vehicle doors and remembering to close all windows and sunroofs
- Removing keys, and spare keys, from your vehicle
- Parking in a garage or behind a locked gate in well-lit areas whenever possible
- Removing any documentation that could be used to steal your identity
- Removing all guns and weapons from a parked vehicle
- Using additional security devices to assist in safeguarding vehicles from theft
- Safeguarding your car keys at all times
- Never leave a vehicle running while unattended
When everyone does their part to combat vehicle theft there are “No Regrets to Lock it or Lose it.”
Crime data shows a motor vehicle was stolen every 44 seconds in the United States in 2019 and more than 721,800 owners and drivers fell victim to vehicle theft last year, resulting in a $6.4 billion economic loss. In 2020, Interpol’s Stolen Motor Vehicle Task Force tracked 248,976 motor vehicles reported stolen throughout the world.
According to the Department of Motor Vehicles, car thefts are on the rise across New York State. The state is seeing a big increase year over year, in fact, they are up 54 percent. Just under 13,000 cars were reported stolen in the state in 2019, and in 2020, that number rose to almost 20,000.
The DMV says vehicle theft rates are highest in the summer, and even though it may seem obvious, the DMV says prevention is as easy as taking the keys out of the car and locking the doors. Preliminary reports by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) indicate a sharp increase in U.S. vehicle thefts for 2020; final data will be released in Fall 2021.
Nichole Soriano, NYACT’s Chair, states, “While July is designated as National Vehicle Theft Prevention Month, car thefts occur all year long. One way to prevent them is to always lock our vehicles, take the keys with you and ensure no spare keys are left in the car.”
By leaving our keys in the car and the car unlocked, offenders easily access the car and often use these stolen vehicles to commit multiple other crimes, which means many others in our community also become a victim from a single auto theft offense.”
Take a stance against vehicle crimes and have No Regrets Lock it or Lose It.