Sydney Morning Herald recently reported that car thieves are targeting Audi owners in Sydney’s north by breaking into the prestigious vehicles and stealing an emergency spare key the owners have left in the glove box.
Police in Sydney has found 11 separate incidents within 24 hours in the city’s northern suburbs of Audis being broken into, where thieves smash a window and then take the spare key.
Newer Audi models come equipped with a plastic spare key for emergency use. The key can be used to manually unlock the doors and start the car. The Audi website warns customers that storing a spare key anywhere inside the vehicle is a security risk and that “there may also be insurance implications if your vehicle is stolen and it was discovered that a spare key was inside at the time.”
IAG NZ urges all car owners to never leave spare sets of keys in their car, and to take precautionary measures to protect yourself and your belongings from theft. Robert McDonald from IAG research centre said the spare key was designed to be used in emergency and should be kept in “your wallet or another secure location”. He said thieves were opportunistic and, in addition to removing spare sets of keys from inside the vehicle, motorists should follow a number of tips to protect their car from theft.
- Always lock your car when leaving it unattended;
- Never leave a spare set of keys in your car;
- If you have a GPS remove it from the windscreen and wipe off suction marks;
- Try not to leave valuables in your vehicle or signs of valuable items such as laptop bags. If you have to, lock them in the boot, but don’t do it where you park your car as someone could be watching you;
- Remove visible loose change from any trays;
- Make sure your windows and sun roof are closed;
- If you don’t already have one, consider fitting a car alarm. These can attract attention to your vehicle and scare off a thief;
- Never leave your registration, insurance or ownership papers in the glove box;
- Try to park in busy, well-lit areas; and
- Use security devices like steering wheel locks and immobilisers.
To read more on the story from Sydney Morning Herald, please click here.