Auto Theft

Auto theft is on the rise across Canada. Learn what you can do to prevent thieves from targeting your vehicle.

Why Auto Theft Is a Serious Threat 

Every year, people are injured or die as a result of auto theft. When it's in the hands of a thief, a stolen car is like a loaded gun. Vehicle thieves have absolutely no regard for public safety and the rules of the road. 

Auto theft is not a victimless crime or just a property crime. Auto theft costs all Canadians millions per year, if one considers health care, court, policing, legal and out-of-pocket costs such as deductibles. Each year, Équité Association publishes a list of the Top 10 Most Stolen Cars – see if your car is a potential target.

Fighting Crime Involves Many Partners

Auto theft defies all boundaries – jurisdictional, political, geographical and administrative. It is more than just an insurance crime or a policing problem.

The fight against auto theft requires the cooperation and involvement of many partners. It starts with automobile owners and includes the law enforcement community, automobile manufacturers, dealers of new and used cars, salvage operators, car repairers, automobile insurers, theft deterrent system manufacturers and installers, licensing and customs authorities, and the judicial system.

Tips to prevent auto theft 

Even with today's tech-savvy thieves, there are a number of steps Canadians can take to help protect themselves from becoming a victim of auto theft.  

  • Don't leave a keyless entry fob in a vehicle or unprotected at the front entrance of your home. Thieves can use wireless transmitters to intercept the signal, giving them access to the vehicle. Consider storing fobs in a protective box or bag that blocks the signal.
  • Install an immobilizing device which prevents thieves from bypassing the ignition and hot-wiring a vehicle. This can include devices that require wireless ignition authentication or starter, ignition and fuel pump disablers.
  • Install a tracking device that emits a signal to police or a monitoring station if a vehicle is stolen.
  • Don't make your vehicle an easy target:
    • Never leave a vehicle running when unattended.
    • Lock the doors and close all windows when parked.
    • Make sure to park in well-lit areas or in the garage.
    • Use a visible or audible device that shows thieves a vehicle is protected.
    • Consider using a deterrent like a steering wheel or brake pedal lock.
    • Don't leave personal information, like insurance and ownership documents, in the glove box when parked.