Do connected cars attract connected thieves?
LoJack thinks so. I recently had the opportunity to speak with LoJack about the current state of vehicle theft and the implications of connected vehicles. Although one can’t say with absolute certainty that connected cars pose a higher threat for thieves, you also can’t ignore the possibilities.
LoJack is highlighting the concept of the “connected vehicle thief” this month as a part of National Vehicle Protection month in the U.S. The statistics around vehicle theft remain high. In 2013, the FBI Uniform Crime Report stated a vehicle is stolen every 45.1 seconds in the U.S. resulting in a loss of more than $4.1 billion per year. According to a recent Gallup survey, 42% of Americans frequently fear that their vehicle will be stolen or broken into. Yet, according to LoJack, law enforcement organizations are reducing the manpower associated with thwarting vehicle theft as these statistics have improved.
So where does this leave us? Car theft is still there, law enforcement focused on this topic is being reduced and car thieves are becoming more connected.
As cars become smarter and more connected, the thieves also must become smarter and more connected. Unfortunately, they seem up to the task. Some of the activities of these connected thieves include theft and copying of smart key fobs; using GPS and manufactured keys to access rental cars; vehicle identification number cloning; and identity theft to purchase/lease cars. As you can see, the days of smashing a window and hot-wiring or towing a vehicle have evolved to bring the online and wireless world into that of car theft. The linkage between car and identity theft is unfortunately growing.
As the online world, outside world and it seems moving world come together, this connectivity that increases the safety, functionality and pleasure associated with our vehicles also opens them up to more opportunities for theft. Not only of the vehicle itself, but the data contained within and transferred to-and-from them.
Although best known as a U.S. based company, LoJack is operating in over 30 countries.
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Claudia Bacco, Managing Director – EMEA for RCR Wireless News, has spent her entire career in telecom, IT and security. Having experience as an operator, software and hardware vendor and as a well-known industry analyst, she has many opinions on the market. She’ll be sharing those opinions along with ongoing trend analysis for RCR Wireless News.