Car crime leaves Brits broken hearted
- Two in five (42%) British drivers admit feeling more stress and heartache following a car theft, than being dumped (33%) or even losing a pet (39%)
- A fifth (20%) claim having your car stolen is one of the worst things in life that you can experience
- Security expert, Michael Fraser and GoCompare have shared top tips to protect yourself against keyless car theft - the latest trick of tech-savvy criminals
New research commissioned by insurance comparison site GoCompare, reveals a staggering 69% of Brits feel worried about the rise in car crime, as the number of motor theft claims in the UK soar, particularly when it comes to keyless car crime.
In fact, with nearly half of us (44%) admitting we are ‘in love’ with our cars, the thefts are having a dire emotional and financial impact. An alarming two in five (42%) British drivers admitted suffering real-life heartache when their beloved motor was stolen.
The (car) love is real - the emotional stress involved in having our cars stolen was worse for a third of Brits than being dumped, losing a wedding ring (23%) or even losing a pet (39%). Heartbreakingly, a fifth of Brits claim having their car stolen to be one of the worst experiences you can go through.
GoCompare is working with security consultant and reformed burglar, Michael Fraser - who has provided the below top tips to help protect you against keyless car theft, a new innovative method of car crime.
- Use the tech in your favour: Ever thought of buying a Signal Blocking Pouch or bag? Well maybe you should. The thin metallic lining, the same fabric used by the likes of law enforcement, automatically blocks any wireless signals such as keyless car cloning devices, as well as WiFi and mobile phone signals. When drivers place their keys in these pouches, criminals will find it tricky to clone their key fobs.
- Protect the wheel: Used for generations and one of the few deterrents that still works today; a wheel lock is an immediate red flag for a potential car thief.
- Got a garage?: Then use it. Sounds simple right? Well it is. Build a fortress for your car.
- A tidy car is a safe car: Don’t draw attention to your car and fill it with half the contents of your house. Taking your phone or sat-nav out is a wise move.
- Check it’s locked: Don’t make a burglar's job an easy one. It’s now common for cars’ wing mirrors to be folded in when locked, so it’s easy for savvy thiefs to spot an unlocked target.
Car thieves are now using more calculated ways to break into our beloved vehicles. Last year, there were a total of 106,642 drivers who listed a car-related theft on their quote through GoCompare. Financially, having our car stolen increases the average Brits insurance by £628.99, with nearly one in five (18%) saying dealing with insurance was the most stressful part of their car being stolen.
Despite over half of drivers (58%) never leaving their keys in the car or leaving the car running when unattended (54%), most don’t realise that these steps do little to protect against keyless car theft. The sophisticated measures currently used by thieves is leaving Brits stumped, with 42% admitting they did not understand what car key cloning was.
Security consultant, Michael Fraser, said: “Criminals are very tech-savvy, especially their methods of stealing cars with keyless car technology. If you're willing to splash out thousands on a new motor, don’t be stingy when it comes to protecting it. Invest in the most advanced technology such as signal blocking pouches, motion sensor cameras for your car or even a good old-fashioned wheel lock. All of these methods help deter car thieves and leave your car safe. Finally, if the worst happens, ensure you’ve shopped around for the best insurance policy.”
Ian Rowlands, Director of Insurance at GoCompare, said: “This data is a stark reminder of why it is so important for drivers to ensure they have the right insurance policy in place for them, so they can avoid making the already difficult situation of having a car stolen even worse through preventable stresses. Our website recommends policies based on users’ specific search terms to help find the most suitable product for their needs, rather than just the cheapest.”
“Keyless car theft is a serious issue, and we are looking at ways we can help motorists innovatively combat keyless car crime - watch this space for something pretty exciting coming in the next few weeks!”
Notes to editors
 On 24 March 2020, an online survey of 1,059 randomly selected Great British car owners was executed by Ginger Comms. For comparison purposes, a probability sample of this size has an estimated margin of error (which measures sampling variability) of +/- 2.1%. The results have been weighted by age, gender, region and social grade to match the population, according to Census data. This is to ensure the sample is representative of the entire adult population of Great Britain. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.
GoCompare is a comparison website that enables people to compare the costs and features of a wide variety of insurance policies, financial products and energy tariffs.
GoCompare does not charge people to use its services, and it does not accept advertising or sponsored listings, so all product comparisons are unbiased. GoCompare makes its money through fees paid by the providers of products that appear on its various comparison services when a customer buys through the site.
When it launched in 2006, it was the first comparison site to focus on displaying policy details rather than just listing prices, with the aim of helping people to make better-informed decisions when buying their insurance. GoCompare has remained dedicated to helping people choose the most appropriate products rather than just the cheapest, and has teamed up with Defaqto, the independent financial researcher, to integrate additional policy information into a number of its insurance comparison services. This allows people to compare up to an extra 30 features of cover.
GoCompare is the only comparison website to be invited to join the British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).