Auto insurance: Drivers urged to check their auto insurance policies for fear of increased auto theft
Usually, drivers are warned not to leave anything of value in their car when it is not occupied. For this reason, Go Compare urges drivers to check their auto insurance policy and personal belongings coverage.
With the nights now approaching earlier, opportunistic thieves could make the most of the increased hours of darkness.
According to statistics, the most common items stolen from cars in 2019 and 2020 were valuables such as jewelry, purses, credit cards, documents and wallets.
The data also shows that the type of items stolen from vehicles has changed significantly since 2010, with the percentage of cellphones taken from vehicles falling by 39%.
At the same time, thefts involving exterior fittings of vehicles and electrical equipment fell by 74% and 49% respectively.
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Ryan Fulthorpe, automotive expert at GoCompare, explained how drivers could be affected by leaving valuables in the car.
He said: “When it comes to purchasing auto insurance this year, many drivers will naturally focus on the overall price and make sure there is some level of personal protection insurance in place.
“However, it’s important to dig into the details of the policy and make sure you have the right amount of coverage for the everyday items that come out with us.
“Accidentally leaving your wallet or phone in the car happens to the best of us, which is why it’s so important to check your level of coverage.
“Also remember that the valuables we are now likely to leave in our vehicles have changed dramatically over the past 10 years.
“We urge all car owners who are returning to work or going on a day trip this semester to think about the value of the items they would normally leave in the car – as well as those they might accidentally forget – and to make sure they are protected should the worst happen.
“Also remember to take simple precautions to protect your belongings, like not leaving anything of value on display and rechecking that your car is locked when you leave it, even when it is in a driveway.”
Most car thefts occur between midnight and 6 a.m., but there are now fears that there is an increase given the longer hours of darkness.
Just under half of all break-ins were due to the door not being properly locked.
About seven percent of thefts occurred because the offender was using an electric key or remote control.
In recent years, drivers with keyless entry have been warned to take extra care when protecting their property and car.
Criminals can bounce the signal from the key to a relay box that allows them to open the door and take control of the car.
For this reason, drivers are advised to place their car key away from their home door and keep it in a protective cover to prevent any signal from being intercepted.