The UK’s Top Car Theft Method 2019
The top car theft trend for 2019 was keyless car theft, or ‘relay attacks’. Keyless car theft occurs when a small group of criminals trick the signal from your key fob to your car, unlocking your vehicle, igniting the engine and driving off with your valuable motor.
92% of vehicles stolen and recovered by Tracker in 2019 were stolen without their keys.
This has risen from 88% in 2018 which is clearly an enormous and alarming percentage.
This article discusses the top vehicles that were stolen and recovered by Tracker in the UK across 2019. With the rise in relay attacks, we will also give tips on how to protect keyless entry cars in the first place and the real cost of car theft in the devastating event that your vehicle is taken from you.
The UK’s Most Stolen and Recovered Vehicles List 2019
1. Range Rover Sport
2. BMW X5
3. Mercedes-Benz C-Class
4. Range Rover Vogue
5. Land Rover Discovery
6. BMW X6
7. Range Rover Evoque
8. BMW 3 Series
9. Range Rover Autobiography
10. Mercedes E Class
The Range Rover Sport was the UK’s most stolen and recovered vehicle by Tracker in 2019. In 2018 this model was just 8th place, so it has really jumped up the rankings. The BMW X5 was the second most recovered car in 2019 and claimed the top spot in 2018, making it a very consistently popular vehicle with car thieves.
Range Rover was the most stolen car brand in 2019, occupying 40% of the top 10 most stolen cars in the UK. BMW came in with 30%, Mercedes-Benz with 20% and Land Rover with only one vehicle at 10%.
The total value of vehicles recovered in 2019 by Tracker stolen vehicle recovery devices was over £13 million, with the most expensive car recovered by Tracker last year being a Range Rover SV Autobiography, valued at £150,000. However, cars at the lower end of the market are still a target, with a VW Polo valued at £575.00 being the least expensive car recovered.
Obviously the vehicles on this list are there because they are glorious, valuable cars of prestige with demand from both domestic and foreign stolen car markets. They are by no means easier to steal than any other car with keyless entry, or without keyless entry. Quite the opposite - the Land Rover Discovery was even named by WhatCar? as one of the hardest cars to steal from 2019! However the more desirable the vehicle, the more in demand it will be and the more steps you should take to protect it.
If a criminal can take advantage of a new feature on the car market, they will. Here are some tips for preventing keyless car theft in the first place:
How to Prevent Keyless Car Theft
Keyless car theft works through a relay-style electronic device tricking your key fob signal into thinking the key is near to the car and then the device can assume all key fob power.
Tracker’s advice is to protect your key fob, never leave your car running idle and unattended, take car security measures to protect your car from being stolen in the first place, and buy a top-quality vehicle tracker to recover your car in the event of theft.
How do I Protect my Keyless Car Fob, you ask?
Key fobs emit a signal to a car similar to that of a phone with wifi. If you block the signal, it will be much harder for criminals to steal your car via a relay attack.
Many drivers trust faraday bags, which are easily accessible and fairly cheap online. Faraday bags can block the signal from your key fob to your car, meaning there is no signal for criminals to hijack.
If criminals find a way around your faraday bag, or if your car is targeted by thieves and stolen through another method, such as frost-jacking, having a vehicle tracker on your car can help the authorities to recover your vehicle.
The Cost of Vehicle Theft
In many cases, having a Thatcham approved vehicle tracker on your car can reduce your car insurance premium. In some cases, if your vehicle is of a certain value, it is even mandatory to have a Thatcham approved vehicle tracker before some insurers will cover you.
Most people have an idea of the cost of claiming on your car insurance, which is generally thought to be just your insurance excess. But have you ever considered the full cost of having your car stolen?
Assuming you’ve got a courtesy car on your policy, and disregarding whatever possessions you had in your car when it was stolen... Think of the time spent having to sort out your insurance, the terror of knocking your courtesy car (or being knocked), losing your no claims bonus and the uplift of your insurance premium for the foreseeable future, the sentimentality and memories attached to your car that were stolen along with it...
Everyone that buys a car knows that the value of your vehicle depreciates as time goes on, so your insurance is never going to cover the full cost of what you’ve just lost… So then add on the cost of a new car if you don’t have a tracker to recover your vehicle.
Having a fitted vehicle tracking device cannot always stop your vehicle from being stolen. However, a stolen vehicle recovery device from Tracker can warn you if your car is not where it is meant to be. With movement and Geofence alerts, in addition to the security features of many modern built-in vehicle apps, sometimes a vehicle tracker can give you just enough time spook a thief, or at the very least get a headstart on contacting the authorities. Click here for more tips on vehicle theft prevention.
Protect your Vehicle with a Stolen Vehicle Recovery Device
Tracker has relationships with some of the most prestigious car manufacturers in the world. No other vehicle tracking device in the UK currently uses VHF technology, making a security system from Tracker the best vehicle tracker you can buy.
With stolen vehicle recovery device from Tracker, you can have movement alerts, set up geofence perimeters and have a 24/7 direct connection to Tracker headquarters who will check with you if they receive an alert from your device.
In the devastating event of vehicle theft, Tracker will work with the UK Police to track your car to its exact location. The unique relationship means police are equipped with our tracking equipment to track a stolen vehicle for a faster response, maximising the chance of you getting your car back in one piece.
To read more about steps to take to prevent your vehicle from being stolen, read this article.