Las Vegas Ranked the Hottest Spot in Auto Theft

by : RyanThomas

For three years in a row, Modesto, California ranked as having the most number of auto theft in relation to its population. Recently though, Modesto gladly relinquished its "throne" to Las Vegas as according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB).

This year, Modesto ranks only fifth in this year's top ten "hot spots" for auto thefts. Of the ten hot spots named by the NICB, five of them are in California. Aside from Modesto, other cities in California included in the list are Stockton which takes in the second place, Visalia/Porterville in third, Sacramento/Arden-Arcade/Roseville in seventh, and Fresno in the eighth place.

In order for consumers to protect their cars wherever they are, the NICB offered some insights on how to properly protect vehicles. Although there are steps that can be taken, the NICB admits that there are car thieves who will not be stopped by these precautions. With regards to that, NICB President and Chief Executive Officer Robert M. Bryant have this to say: "People can take any number of precautions to protect themselves from vehicle theft and, in most cases, those are sufficient to prevent a theft. But a determined thief, a serial vehicle thief, is someone for whom there is no absolute deterrent-except prison."

Bryant cited what they have done to catch thieves in the Modesto area which resulted to the reduced number of auto thefts. "NICB, through the support of its member companies, has pursued an aggressive 'Bait Vehicle' and License Plate Reader Program around the nation," says Bryant. "These cutting-edge enforcement tools offer law enforcement the latest in high- tech crime fighting, and are partly responsible for the absolutely outstanding results achieved in Modesto. When used in conjunction with comprehensive legislation and aggressive prosecution, police on the street can have a tremendous impact on vehicle theft and other crimes," added the NICB CEO.

To help consumers protect their vehicles from theft the NICB offers tips to consumers. These tips are necessary to protect vehicles which are investments on the part of its owners. For thieves determined to steal a car or a vehicle, even if it is upgraded by using or not, one safety precaution is not enough that is why the NICB suggests a "layered approach" to protecting one's car.

The first layer is that thing that we call common sense. The NICB maintains that an open vehicle with the key in the ignition is an open invitation to thieves. Consumers are hereby urged to remove their keys from the ignition even if they are leaving their car even for a brief period of time. When parking, consumers should lock the car's windows and doors and check them before leaving the vehicle. They are also advised to park in a visible or a well-lit area if parking at night.

The second layer of protection is consisted of warning devices. These include protection which is visible or audible to thieves to deter them from stealing a vehicle. Warning and protective devices includes: audible alarms; steering column collars; steering wheel/brake pedal lock; brake locks; wheel locks; tire locks/tire deflators; theft deterrent decals; identification markers; VIN etching and micro dot marking.

The third layer of protection suggested to car owners are immobilizing devices. These devices prevent thieves from bypassing the ignition or hot-wiring a car. Some devices that can be used as immobilizing devices are: smart keys; fuse cut-offs; kill switches; starter, ignition, and fuel pump disablers; and wireless ignition authentication. While some of these devices may be costly, it would be a good investment towards protecting a car.

The final layer of protection against auto theft is tracking devices. These devices use different technologies to transmit the location of the vehicle to authorities. These devices are typically installed in an inconspicuous part of the vehicle where thieves cannot find them easily.

With auto theft still increasing, consumers need to protect their investments by any means they deem necessary. The NICB is working to increase awareness among car owners on how to protect their vehicles and only they can do anything to protect their cars from thieves.