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Auto theft hurts everyone. When thieves steal, we all pay.

End Auto Theft

Auto theft is a national crisis

Auto theft hurts everyone. When thieves steal, we all pay.

Auto theft is a crisis that’s affecting Canadians across the country, and is being felt most acutely in Ontario. In 2022, more than 105,000 vehicles were stolen across Canada. That’s one vehicle stolen every five minutes. Without a whole-of-society response, the crisis is expected to get even worse.

Read on to learn more about what needs to be done to end auto theft, including the steps you can take to help keep your vehicle safe.

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Canada’s private auto insurers paid out $1.5 billion in theft claims in 2023 – up 254% since 2018.  This marks the second year in a row auto theft claims costs have topped $1 billion. To put this into perspective, between 2018 and 2021, auto theft claims costs averaged $556 million annually.

In Ontario alone, auto theft claims costs increased by 524% between 2018 and 2023, surpassing $1 billion for the first time in 2023.

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How do we end auto theft?

How do we end auto theft? IBC and Équité Association believe we need a whole-of-society approach to fix auto theft that includes all orders of government, auto manufacturers and insurers.

The costs of auto theft

Auto theft costs every driver in Ontario an average of $130 a year: that’s how much of your auto insurance premium goes towards settling claims for stolen vehicles (on average). But that’s only part of the story. Ontarians are paying more than $1.6 billion to cover the costs associated with auto theft – from law enforcement and court resources, to the mental anguish of being victimized, to the general economic costs. Auto theft hurts everyone. When thieves steal, we all pay.

The auto theft crisis is also creating unsafe communities across the country as many of these thefts are linked to organized crime and the proceeds are used to fund the trafficking of guns and drugs. How bad have things gotten? One in four Canadians say either they or someone they know has had their car stolen in the last five years.

The majority of Canadians (84%) say the rise in auto theft makes them concerned about the potential overall increase in crime in their community. Almost 70% of us are concerned about our personal safety or our family’s safety due to the increase in auto theft. And just as many of us are nervous we could be the victim of auto theft. For more information on the survey, click here.

Empowering Drivers: What you can do to protect your vehicle

The best offense is a good defense: Équité Association encourages consumers to take a layered approach to protection:

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End auto theft in Canada

We need a whole-of-society approach to turn the tide: no one organization or industry can solve the problem of auto theft on its own. It starts with the federal government coordinating a national auto theft strategy with a focus on stopping the illegal export of stolen vehicles.

Thinking of buying a new vehicle? Here’s what you need to know

Before you buy or lease, check with your insurance representative to understand how much insurance could cost for that vehicle. Review Équité Association’s Top 10 Most Stolen Vehicles list to see which makes and models are most attractive to thieves.

Before you purchase or lease a new vehicle, know that the make, model, year, value and potential cost to repair a car all impact the cost of insurance. To see how your car measures up, click here.

About the End Auto Theft Campaign

IBC and Équité Association have partnered to raise awareness about the growing auto theft crisis that’s affecting Canadians across the country, on behalf of their members: the property and causality (P&C) insurance industry. The P&C industry has a long history of working with law enforcement to combat auto theft. Insurers are taking proactive steps to try to help protect their customers from the impacts of auto theft, and many insurers are subsidizing the costs associated with the installation of approved aftermarket tracking devices. Équité Association releases an annual Top 10 Most Stolen Vehicles list to help consumers make informed choices.