In 2018 and so far in 2019 we have seen a fair amount of car burglaries. Just a few weeks ago a 16-year-old from Roselle was arrested and charged with a slew of thefts in that happened in Cranford, NJ. These thefts occurred from May 7-9 and each incident took place at night. Various items were taken from unlocked vehicles. Theft from parked cars is one of the most common complaints police receive in residential neighborhoods. According to the U.S Department of Justice statistics, these types of crimes make up 36% of all larcenies that are reported to the police. Thefts from vehicles typically involve smaller dollar values regarding property that is stolen, but they take up considerable police resources and increase residents’ fear of falling victim to vehicle theft.
Below are the three general reasons that cars are often stolen:
- Temporary transportation/ “joyriding”
- To strip the car of its valuables
- To re-sell the car
Where and when you leave your car is one of the most significant factors that offer the opportunity to thieves. Parking your car in the driveway is usually safer than parking your car on streets, but this also depends to some extent on the length of the driveway, visibility, and other factors that affect natural surveillance. The safest place to park your vehicle is in the garage. Suburban areas are usually overall seen as safe areas, residents can easily become unconcerned about their vehicle’s safety. Residents of suburban areas may tend to leave their car doors unlocked or leave their keys inside their cars. Unsecured cars, cars with valuables left in them, poor house and street lighting, vegetation, and other factors that provide concealment for thieves are a commonplace. Often times outside lighting is inadequate. With bad lighting and tall shrubbery on the property, it gives thieves good hiding places and good cover. A thief will have a field day in a neighborhood filled with poor lighting and unlocked cars.
Car thefts in suburban residential areas usually occur at night because that is when most cars are present and there is very little lighting at night. In residential areas that contain multi-family apartment complexes, parking lots can be vulnerable to theft during the day because it provides anonymity to the offender due to the number of people using the parking lot.
Frequently car thefts occur in clusters. Numerous burglaries may be reported during the early morning hours when thieves have already passed through a neighborhood looking for valuables to steal. In general, two kinds of properties are stolen, personal belongings and car components. Personal items can include but are not limited to loose change, laptops, wallets, music places, purses, etc. Personal components kept I the passenger compartment accounted for 35% of stolen items. Stereo components made up 27% of stolen items.
Below are some simple tips to prevent falling victim to vehicle theft:
- Always lock your doors and roll up your windows– Thieves often look for unlocked cars, as well as open sheds and garages. While this is a very simple tip, up o a quarter of vehicle thefts are from unlocked cars. Whether you’re running into the store for a soda or going shopping at the mall for a couple of hours, you should always make sure your car is locked and your windows are closed
- Don’t leave your valuables. Take your valuables with you when you leave your car. Make sure you take your phone, wallet, purse, etc. with you. In today’s day in age, change has been something taken out of cars more often than you would think. Don’t leave anything that may look appealing or worth a lot of money to a thief. Stowaway anything that may be of value.
- Hide your valuables. Stash and hide any valuables before you park. Put any shopping bags in your trunk. Sometimes thieves will linger around a parking lot looking for valuables that are being moved out of plain sight. If you have an SUV or wagon that leaves your cargo area on display, consider getting a cover for it.
- Turn your car off. All too often we see cars left running in front of local convenience stores such as Wawa or we see our neighbors’ cars running in their driveways. When you leave your car running it shows a thief that it’s open and the keys are in it, making your vehicle an easy target.
- Never leave the keys. Make sure you keep your keys with you for the simple fact that they usually have more than just a car key on them. Typically, your keys have your house key’s, work key’s, mailbox key, etc. on them. By leaving your keys in your car, not only does the thief have access to your vehicle but also your home.
- Park in secure and visible areas. ALWAYS park in a well-lit area. Parking in a secure area protects your belongings and can also protect you and your family from any dangers that may be lurking.
- Car alarms. If you have a car alarm, don’t forget to activate it. If you’re in a parking lot and feel that danger is around press your car alarm button when the alarm sounds thieves will usually flee.
- Get a vehicle locator. For stolen vehicles consider having a vehicle locator/tracker installed.
- Report ANY suspicious activity. If you see something suspicious, report it. It is better to be safe than sorry.
- Add home security cameras. Consider getting surveillance cameras installed at your home. This can capture any car thefts or burglaries and give authorities a better idea of who they are looking for.
What else can you do to make sure your vehicle is safe and secure?
Installing a security system with line crossing detection is a great option to insure your vehicle and your homes safety. With security cameras placed outside of your home, you will be able to see what happens around your home and be able to keep an eye on your vehicle, even when you aren’t home. Never miss a beat on what’s happening at your home with having line intrusion alerts sent right to your phone.
What is line crossing detection?
Line crossing detection is a function of your NVR, DVR, or IP camera. It instantly detects any motion in a certain set area. This area is personally set by you for your alert needs. It will send immediate alerts right to your smart device directly from your camera. For example, if you want to know when someone enters your driveway you would go into the software of your NVR, DVR, or IP camera and start setting specific areas by drawing lines across the driveway. These lines are no visible to the human eye as they are only virtual lines set by you. These lines will activate the area you have created therefore if this area becomes breached, you will get an alert sent to you either through the app or to your email, whichever you choose. You can set line crossing detection to work on schedules, certain hours during the day, certain days of the week, or if you’re on vacation and want to be alerted if someone enters your “set” area. There are also sensitivity settings that you can adjust to fit your needs. For example, if you don’t want to be notified if a cat or other small animal enters your set area you would adjust the scale to measure larger objects.
Having home security cameras installed on the outside of your home is often the number one deterrent for stopping a thief. A home that is well lit and has home security camera signs will usually be passed by because a thief will not want to step foot onto your property or touch your vehicle knowing they will be caught on camera. With the advances in today’s security cameras, often the local authorities can identify or get a good look at those committing these crimes. Today’s security cameras can send you an alert right to your phone and notify you when someone is on your property when they aren’t supposed to be just by having line crossing detection set up around your home. Give Central Jersey Security Cameras a call today for a free on-site estimate. We can help you decide what security system is best to fit your security needs and budget. Give us a call today at 732-333-0227 or visit our website centraljerseysecuritycameras.com