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Keep your keys safe

A car key burglary is a crime where an individual breaks into your home with the specific aim of removing your car keys and stealing your car.

Perpetrators of this crime often work to order and will target specific vehicles, based on demand and value. If a criminal is targeting a certain vehicle they will also be targeting the owner, looking for easy ways to exploit their security and get to their keys.

The most common methods used by thieves are to follow victims home or 'cruise' around residential areas looking for opportunities. If you think you are being followed or see any suspicious vehicles, take the registration number and report it to the police.

Reduce your chances of becoming a victim of car key burglars

Simple crime prevention methods are the most effective way to deter potential thieves. The more difficult you make it for them, the less likely they are to bother.  You can use a number of methods to protect both your car and home:

Protecting your car:

  • always keep your keys somewhere safe and out of sight
  • always lock your car away safely in the garage, if you have one
  • fit a high quality alarm to your vehicle
  • use additional security systems such immobilisers and visible security locks
  • always take your keys with you when leaving the vehicle unattended
  • always keep your keys safe and concealed in public places
  • make sure doors, windows, the boot and sunroof are secure whenever you leave your vehicle
  • if you own more than one vehicle, park the lesser valued vehicle behind  the more expensive one on the driveway, making it more difficult to remove

Protecting your home:

  • make sure all windows and doors are securely locked
  • install a high quality burglar alarm
  • install an exterior security lighting system

It's not just your car keys

Like all thieves, car key burglars are opportunists. If they enter your home and cannot find your keys they will steal any valuables they can fit into their pockets or remove without arousing suspicion.

Wallets, purses, credit cards, cash, watches or jewellery will all be taken along with your car keys and car if left on display.

What to do if you are burgled

If the burglary is in progress, call 999 immediately. If you find yourself face to face with an intruder in your home DO NOT confront them. The minute you confront an intruder you increase the risk of personal harm to yourself and others. Don't take the risk.

To report a burglary that has already happened, call 101.