What will help you to keep your car secure

Car theft is a real threat in London and throughout the UK. Preventing London car theft is a major concern as car theft methods become more sophisticated. Understanding these risks is crucial to protecting your vehicle.

But what will help you keep your car secure? Find out in our guide.

The Risks of Car Theft

Car theft in London and across the UK is a reality. These key statistics highlight the severity of this issue:

  • According to plumplot.co.uk, London has the highest vehicle crime rates out of all the regions across England and Wales, with 103,000 crimes reported.
  • The most targeted London boroughs for car theft include Enfield, Barking and Dagenham, and Haringey. car theft London boroughs
  • Alongside London Metropolitan, other car theft hotspots include Cleveland, South Yorkshire, and Northumbria.

Car theft poses significant risks. Stolen vehicles are often used in illegal activities, which increases your liability and stress. These cars are more commonly dismantled and sold for parts, making them difficult to recover and leaving you with the emotional and financial burden.

Protecting Against Common Car Theft Methods

Thieves often use a range of methods to steal cars, from simple techniques like breaking windows to more sophisticated approaches like key cloning. Knowing these methods can help you better prepare and protect your car against potential theft.

Relay Theft

Relay theft, or keyless car theft, impacts cars with keyless entry systems. Thieves utilise a relay transmitter and an amplifier to capture the signal from your car key and use it to unlock your car, even if the key is inside your home. This method is quick and discreet, making it a popular choice among car thieves.

Protection Tips

  • Store your keys in a signal-blocking pouch or box.
  • Turn off the keyless entry system when not in use, if your car allows it.
  • Install a Ghost II immobiliser to prevent the car from being driven away.

Hanoi Burglary

Hanoi burglary, named after the police initiative Operation Hanoi, involves thieves breaking into your home to steal your car keys. They often target homes with high-value vehicles parked outside.

Protection Tips

  • Keep your keys hidden in a safe place.
  • Install robust security systems for your home, such as alarms and cameras.
  • Use a steering wheel lock for an additional layer of security.

OBD Hacking

OBD hacking involves thieves accessing your car’s onboard diagnostics (OBD) port to reprogram a blank key fob. This method requires physical access to your car’s interior, where they can plug into the OBD port. Once connected, they can quickly reprogram a new key and drive away with your vehicle.

Protection Tips

  • Park your car in a secure, locked garage.
  • Install an OBD lock or port protector.
  • Use an alarm system that alerts you if someone attempts to access the OBD port.

Headlight Hacking (CAN Injection)

Headlight hacking, or CAN injection, is a sophisticated method where thieves access the car’s Controller Area Network (CAN) bus system, typically through the headlight wiring. Using a CAN injection device, they send false messages to the engine control system and engine control unit (ECU) to gain access to the vehicle.

Protection Tips

  • Install a Ghost II immobiliser to prevent the unauthorised starting of the vehicle.
  • Use additional alarm systems with sensors near vulnerable entry points like headlights.
  • Ensure professional installation of advanced security systems to avoid detection and bypass by thieves.

Best Practices for Car Security

Having your car stolen is incredibly distressing. It leaves you feeling vulnerable and anxious, and the financial impact can be significant. Keeping your car secure requires a combination of good habits and advanced security measures.

Here’s what will help keep your car secure:

Securing Your Car’s Exterior

Securing your car’s exterior is the first line of defence against theft. Here are some practical tips to help you protect your vehicle.

  • Always Lock It: Always ensure your car is locked, even when you’re just stepping away for a moment. A locked car is less inviting to potential thieves.
  • Close Windows and Sunroof: Make sure all windows and the sunroof are fully closed before leaving your car. Even a small gap can provide an easy entry point for thieves.
  • Secure Number Plates: Use anti-theft screws to secure your number plates. This simple measure can prevent thieves from easily changing your car’s identity if stolen.

Keeping Valuables Safe Inside Your Car

Valuable items left on display can make your car an appealing target for opportunistic thieves. The best approach is to never leave any item of value, such as your laptop, smartphone, handbag, and brand-name shopping bags, in your car. If you’re unable to take them with you, ensure to keep them hidden within your boot, under your car seat, or in the glove compartment.

Protective Measures for Parking and Storage

Where you park and store your car is critical for its security. If available, you should always keep your car parked within a secure garage. If you need to park on the street or in an unsecured area, here are some security tips:

  • Use a Steering Wheel Lock: A steering wheel lock is a visible deterrent that makes it harder for thieves to drive away with your car. Always lock it in place when leaving your car, even at home.
  • Turn Wheels Towards Curb: When parking on a street, turn your wheels towards the curb. This makes it more difficult for thieves to tow your car away.

Effective Use of Alarms and Immobilisers

While certain behaviours can help protect your car, car thieves are becoming increasingly sophisticated. This means you need security systems and devices, such as alarms and immobilisers. These tools provide a layer of protection that can deter determined thieves.

An alarm serves as a deterrent, scaring off potential thieves by setting off an alert. Professionally installing an aftermarket alarm can enhance your car’s existing security system, making it more effective.

Immobilisers are another essential security measure. The Ghost II immobiliser, for example, prevents the engine from starting unless a unique PIN code is entered. This advanced system makes it difficult for thieves to drive away with your car, providing you with greater peace of mind.

Role of Surveillance Devices in Car Security

Dashboard cameras, or dash cams, are small video cameras mounted on your car’s dashboard that record the road ahead and sometimes the interior of the car. Using dash cams can act as a deterrent to thieves. A smart dash cam offers additional features like motion detection and cloud storage for added security.

Dash cams provide crucial evidence if your car is stolen or involved in an incident. The footage can help authorities identify and catch the thieves. Having video evidence can also support insurance claims, making the process smoother and quicker.

Stay One Step Ahead with Advanced Technology

Modern car security devices offer enhanced protection and can help keep you ahead of evolving threats. One key innovation in this area is vehicle tracking, which provides real-time monitoring of your car’s location.

Car Tracking Solutions and their Benefits

GPS trackers are devices that use satellite technology to monitor and report the real-time location of your car. They work by sending signals to a network of satellites, which then relay the information to your smartphone or computer. This allows you to always keep track of your vehicle.

  • Real-Time Monitoring: Know the exact location of your car at any given moment.
  • Quick Recovery: If your car is stolen, GPS tracking helps authorities locate and recover it faster.
  • Geofencing Alerts: Receive notifications if your car leaves a designated area, adding an extra layer of security.

Keeping Your Car Safe Ongoing

Safeguarding your car against theft is an ongoing commitment. It’s crucial to consistently maintain good safety habits and make full use of your advanced security systems.

Here are some final tips on what will help keep your car secure:

Latest News and Updates on Car Security

Keeping up with the latest news and updates on car security is essential for staying ahead of potential threats. Regularly check automotive websites and forums for valuable information and advice on new security trends and technologies. Staying informed helps you adopt the best protective measures to prevent car theft.

Ensuring Maximum Protection for Your Vehicle

Maximising your car’s security involves a comprehensive strategy. You need to combine physical deterrents, advanced security systems, and safety practices to protect your vehicle effectively. This can include installing an immobiliser and GPS tracker, using a dash cam and steering wheel lock, and consistently parking in a secure garage while keeping your key in a signal-blocking box.


What are the top tips to keep my car secure?

You should always lock your car, close the windows, never leave valuables in sight, and park in well-lit areas. You should also use advanced security systems like alarms and immobilisers.

How can I prevent car theft?

Using multiple security measures is the best way to prevent car theft. This includes installing immobilisers, aftermarket alarms, and GPS trackers. You should also park in secure areas, use steering wheel locks, and stay informed about common theft methods.

Do dash cams help in keeping a car secure?

Dash cams can deter thieves and provide evidence if theft occurs. They can record suspicious activity around your car and help identify criminals.

Should I install immobilisers on my car?

Installing immobilisers is a highly effective way to prevent car theft. They stop the engine from starting without the correct PIN code.