8 Tips To NEVER Get Your Car Stolen
(by a former con-man thief)
By Jack Turner
Like every criminal before
me, I started small. The first item I ever stole was a book on how to perform magic which I blatantly picked up off
a bookshelf and walked out the store with. The irony of openly thieving an item which dealt primarily with the
subtle concealing of items from the human eye was not lost on me, and in fact, this incident affected and “altered”
my adult life in more ways than one.
Firstly, I grew up to become
a professional magician. And secondly, I grew up to be a professional thief.
I used sleight of hand to
take items from shops and pick-pocketing techniques. The concepts of illusion and corrupt behavior became
interlinked in my head, and evolved into the point where I became a fully-fledged criminal. Small items became big
items, and big items became bigger items. It reached the point where myself and several accomplices were stealing
two or three cars a week without even thinking about the people that we were stealing
Luckily, those days are over
for me now. But I learnt a few things during this time. After all, no one gives better anti-criminal advice than
the criminal himself. Please, use the following information to keep your vehicle and possessions as safe as possible.
What is Thieve’s
First and foremost – a thief
will check the security of the car. Is it going to be a quick job? Is it too risky? Is it worth the time?
Anti-theft devices are a car thief’s kryptonite. They definitely live up to their name. If a thief sees
a blinking car alarm, a steering lock, or a sign saying the car is fitted with a tracker, he’s out of
there, no questions asked.
Why? Because there’s a
hundred similar cars without these restrictions. A thief is looking for convenience and maximum gain from
minimum effort. Anti-theft devices are your best friend.
Where to Hide
Of course, it’s not just
about the car itself. In fact, the items inside are often lot more attractive to a potential thief than the car.
Minor things like spare change, tools, cables, cigarettes or briefcases are all attractive targets. It would take a
competent thief around 10 seconds to be in and out of your passenger side window and be away with your
items. Keep your car as
empty as possible.
If you do have to leave
items in your car overnight, keep them in your boot. Boot locks are nearly impossible to pick and take a long time
to jack open – time which thieves don’t have.
Let there be
“The day is for honest
men, the night for thieves”. If a car was well-lit under a streetlamp or in front of a
porch light, a thief wouldn’t go anywhere near it. Use light to your advantage whenever possible. If you have a
motion sensor light outside of your home, be sure it it’s placed high enough that someone couldn’t simply unscrew
the bulb. This also applies to security cameras or any kind of proximity sensor you might have in
Where to Never Hold Your Car
Despite what movies would
have you believe, ‘hot-wiring’ doesn’t really work on modern cars. It’s the main method of stealing older cars
(think pre-2005) but modern vehicles have a chip in the key fob which is required to start the ignition. However,
obtaining your keys is easier than you think. I personally used to pickpocket people in crowded areas for their
keys. The majority of males will keep their car keys in the trouser pocket on their dominant side (hence, I would
target male’s right hand pockets since that’s the majority) and females in their handbags. Pickpockets know this so
change your habits.
thought: Where do you usually keep
your car keys while you’re shopping for example?
I also used a particular
insidious method when performing magic in pubs. I would ask to borrow a “personal item” from a spectator, and it
was often car keys. I’d then covertly press the unlock button and an accomplice of mine outside would locate the
car and fence any goods inside. Moral of the story: never let your keys out of your
people who appear to be harmless.
How Much Time Does a Thief Need
to Steal a Car?
It takes around ten seconds
for someone to break into your car and be gone. A friend of mine left her engine running one morning while she
“popped into her house” to pick something up. When she came back, her car was gone. She claims she was “in the
house only for a minute”, so I had to explain that a professional thief could steal her car six times by that
point. Never leave your engine running.
Why You Need to Keep Your
Car Well Maintained?
implications of keeping your car in good condition is that it sends an image of admiration. If it’s clear the owner
cares about the car, then there’s most likely security measures in place. This also means the opposite is true. An
untidy car suggests sloppy security measures, making it a more likely target.
Parking Arrangements – How to
Park Your Car To Never Get Stolen?
Despite general consensus,
it’s rare to get your car stolen from a public car park. After all, they’re well lit, they’re busy and there’s
usually always cameras nearby. Three huge deterrents for any budding car thief. Just to be safe, however, park with
your wheels either turned towards another car (on a car park) or towards the curb (on a
If it does happen, chances
are that the person was targeted in particular and was observed for an extended period of time prior to the theft.
This is a profiling technique used by the police and criminals are aware of. So, given all these factors, car parks
(supermarkets in particular) are one of the safest places to leave your vehicle.
Despite this, vandalism is
prominent in car parks due to the casual nature of people in close proximity with multiple vehicles. However,
similar rules apply to avoid vandalism: park in well-lit areas near cameras, invest in an alarm, be near other
vehicles, and don’t park across two spaces at once (there are a lot of have-a-go vigilantes out
Lock your doors. Shut your
windows. Close your sunroofs. Sounds obvious, right? Well, the numbers don’t lie. Carjacking crimes increase in the
summer months due to the amount of people who leave their windows open. Sure, your car might be a bit cooler when
you get in, but it’s not worth losing your stereo over.
Please remember, even though
you’ve taken all reasonable
measures to ensure your car’s safety theft can still happen. If it does happen, be
assured that it’s not your fault. It’s entirely the
fault of people like I was … who act out of desperation, immorality and envy. I’m happy to say that this lifestyle
is well and truly behind me, and I’m attempting to make amends for years of wrongdoings by helping people not get
caught out by crimes which can be deterred.
Stay safe, stay well-lit, and keep your keys secure.
reading our monthly list of automotive articles.
would like to submit an article for our readers,
it to me and we’ll be glad to publish it right here
again and happy driving!