The Queensland Police Service (QPS) is today launching a new crime prevention campaign targeting key security, revealing that one in two cars are stolen with their own keys.
‘Don’t gift your keys to thieves’, is targeted towards car owners with a reminder of the simple changes they can make to prevent opportunistic offenders making off with their cars.
Acting Superintendent Stephen Collins said that across the state, vehicle thefts had increased almost 40 per cent in the past four years with investigating officers finding that over half the time offenders were able to get their hands on the car keys.
“These are incredibly opportunistic offenders we are dealing with and what we are seeing is that they are taking any chance they can get to steal vehicles,” Acting Superintendent Collins said.
“What we are also seeing, is that based on our reporting figures there are simple steps the community can take to make it more difficult for them.
“Thieves will take easy opportunities to steal cars, so this campaign is about what we as a community can do to secure not only our cars, but our keys as well.”
Acting Superintendent Collins said it was important for car owners to undertake simple security measures at all times, no matter who was home or the time of day.
“It’s not just about when you’re going out for the day or night, it’s when you’re home too,” he said.
“At all times, keep your doors and windows secured and locked to deter any unwanted intruders from entering your house.
“Keep your keys safe and out of sight – pop them in a drawer rather than out on the bench or a key hook to avoiding gifting your keys to thieves.”
RACQ spokesperson Lucinda Ross said while Toyotas and Holdens topped the insurer’s most stolen vehicles, owners of cars not on the list should not be less wary.
“We see cars like the Toyota Landcruiser, Holden Commodore and Toyota Corolla top this list years in a row because they’re simply the most popular cars out there,” Ms Ross said.
“They’re not being stolen because they’re easier to access but are being targeted because there is simply more of them and their parts are easier to on-sell.
“Make sure you always treat your keys like cash – if you haven’t got them secured safely, or out of sight, they can disappear in a flash.”