Car Advice

How to keep your car from being stolen

Car vehicle thefts are on the increase in 2017 compared to 2016. Our top tips should help make your car a little less appealing to would-be thieves.

CAR HACKING tends to grab all the headlines but thefts of passenger cars are increasing in Australia. Indeed, in March 2017 thefts had risen a staggering 10% on the same month the year before, up to 46,509 vehicles.

  1. It goes without saying that you shouldn’t leave your keys in the car when it’s parked out in the street, and then head back inside for a couple of minutes to grab something you forgot. And the same goes for not leaving the keys in the car and the ignition running… it’s even worth locking the car while you’re unloading the weekly shopping.
  2. Too often cars are stolen after the thief has broken into a home, so, make sure your car keys are hidden away at night and that the spare key is in a secure location. Don’t leave your keys visible if someone peers through a window.
  3. Most new cars have engine immobilisers and tilt sensors as well as general alarms to prevent against theft, which will work against the opportunistic thief who breaks in and then tries to steal your car without the key.
  4. It’s worth investing in a GPS vehicle tracker; this will alert you if your vehicle is stolen and allow its location to be tracked in real-time.
  5. What about a steering wheel lock? This might be a good idea for older cars that lack some of the sophisticated alarms on newer cars, but it won’t stop a determined thief; just slow them down.
  6. When parking your car, try and leave it in a well-lit position and, if you’ve got access to a secure car park then make sure you use it both at work and at home. Your garage might be small and it might be a pain to use it, but leaving your car parked on the street increases the chances of it being stolen.
  7. Don’t leave anything inside your car and try to keep it tidy; I even used to leaving the glovebox and centre console open so would-be thieves could see there was nothing of value in the car… but that was only after someone smashed the passenger’s window to see what I might be of value inside the car.

Question: What other basic car theft deterrent tips do you have?


  • Monty

    Perhaps we need similar technology to mobile phones with fingerprint sensor or face recognition. GPS tracking would be handy if the car is a target for thieves.

  • bob

    Have you thought about a highly visible secure clutch/brake lock.
    Such a lock is an Australian invention it is old technology but it works.
    Thieves have electronic means to defeat immobilisers and cheap jammers for tracking devices.
    Do yourself a favour Google it.

Isaac Bober

Isaac Bober

Isaac Bober was born in the shadow of Mount Panorama in Bathurst and, so, it was inevitable he’d fall into work as a motoring writer. He began his motoring career in 2000 reviewing commercial vehicles, before becoming editor of Caravan & Motorhome magazine. He then moved to MOTOR Magazine before going freelance and contributing to Overlander 4WD, 4×4 Australia, TopGear Australia, Men’s Health, Men’s Fitness, The Australian, CARSguide, and many more.