Published on January 27th, 2023 | by Subhash Nair


Some Simple Tips To Prevent Car Theft

Car theft is still a big problem in 2023, so here are some tips for new and experienced drivers.

Car theft is a growing concern for many individuals, and it’s important to take precautions to protect your vehicle. Today, many vehicles are sold with tracking software and hardware to help with recovery should the car be stolen. You can even use an Apple AirTag or Tile and hide it in your spare tyre compartment if you have an older car without such built-in tracking systems.

Apple Airtag location tracking
Leaving an Airtag in your boot could help with tracking a stolen car down quickly

However, if the car is stolen and stripped of important and expensive parts, then recovery is not an adequate solution. You may have to bear to cost of replacing essential parts like the 12V battery, interior or exterior trim, wiper blades, wheels and those are not even the big ticket items. Thieves will often go for expensive parts like the catalytic converter. Cars with carbon fibre parts or lithium or nickel batteries are also vulnerable. Just like with health, prevention is better than cure, so check out these tips suggested by Persatuan Insurance Am Malaysia (PIAM) and other international insurance bodies.

Catalytic Converter
Catalytic converters are often stolen and sold as they contain precious materials

One of the most common ways for thieves to steal cars is by stealing the keys, which can be done by feeding a wire or hook through your letter box or porch window. To prevent this, it’s important to never leave your keys in the hall or on a hook that’s easy to access, and to never leave them on top of your car (or in it) or on the seat of your motorcycle unattended.

Hybrid batteries too can be targeted for theft

Another important precaution is to never leave your car engine running, even if you’re only going to be gone for a minute. Cars are sometimes stolen at supermarkets, petrol stations, fast food outlets, and at ATMs.

When you leave your car unattended, it’s important to wind up the windows and sunroof (if there’s one), lock all doors, and remove the key from the ignition. It’s also important to never hide a second set of keys in your car, as extra keys can easily be found by an experienced thief.


Additionally, it’s important to not leave important documents such as bank statements, credit card bills, or personal information in your vehicle, as thieves can use this information to steal your identity and access your bank and credit card accounts.

Leaving valuables in your car of any kind is also discouraged. Yes, the car might feel secure because it has locks, but if an opportunistic thief spots a laptop or tablet in the rear seat, you might come back to a car with a broken window. If you can afford security film, you could have that installed to improve protection.

When parking your car, it’s important to park in a busy and well-lit area at night and to avoid car parks that have a history of thefts or break-ins. Additionally, it’s important to consider how the area may look in the dark, as most car thefts occur at night. You should also avoid parking in unattended areas where car thieves have less chance of being caught.

To make your car harder to tow-away, it’s important to park with your wheels turned towards the sidewalk and to use your handbrake when parking. Additionally, if you have a garage, use it, as nearly 50% of all car crime occurs right outside the house.

Other recommended steps to prevent car theft include installing an engine immobilizer or fuel cut-out switch, using a locking device on the steering wheel or transmission gear lever, and disabling your vehicle by removing the electronic ignition fuse, coil wire, or rotor distributor if you’re going to be away for an extended period.

Car Theft in broad daylight

Car theft is a growing concern and it’s important to take precautions to protect your vehicle. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can greatly reduce the risk of your car being stolen and enjoy peace of mind while on the road.

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Written work on @subhashtag on instagram. Autophiles Malaysia on Youtube.

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