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Protecting Your Car Against Theft

Having your car stolen can be a nightmare, as you suddenly find just how much of your daily routine depends on your mobile independence. Any chance of getting your car back is down to luck in many cases, and if your vehicle isn’t insured against theft, well, you’ve got our sympathy.
But what can you do to reduce the chances your car will be targeted for theft, and what are some surefire ways of preventing the would-be burglar from getting away with it?
1. Be mindful of where you park
Anti car theft: parkingSource: El Ronzo
Park your car in well-lit areas that see a lot of traffic. You might feel like avoiding seedier areas, but a main street in a "bad" neighborhood might be safer than a remote and unguarded parking lot a few blocks away. Parking near a store could be a good idea. Remember: in the small hours of the night, every area is dark and deserted, so always park your car in a garage overnight if possible.
2. Secure all of your car keys
Anti car theft: car keys
Keep track of all of your car keys, and never keep a spare on the car. Hiding a key near the wheels may sound like a clever solution for a car lockout, but it’s also a great helping hand for would-be burglars. If you somehow misplace a spare, go to your dealership and get all of your locks changed.
3. Never keep anything of value inside your car
Anti car theft: valuables
One of the things that motivate car burglars are the contents of your car. Don’t leave anything of value inside an unattended car. Not a purse, nor an iPad nor a phone. Tucking it under the seats doesn’t cut it, either. If you’ve got a fancy aftermarket stereo system, consider taking the player out and putting it in your bag.
4. Use a steering wheel lock
Anti car theft: steering wheel lock
Steering wheel locks like The Club aren’t foolproof by any means, and most professional car thieves can get around them, but:
A. not all car thieves are professional.
B. just because you can get around a problem doesn’t mean you necessarily want to get into it in the first place.
If reinforced by other security measures, steering wheel locks are a fine deterrent against thieves.
5. Install a car tracker
Anti car theft: gps tracking
Probably the best anti-theft measure doesn’t actually prevent a burglar from breaking into and driving away in your car. A GPS car tracker will allow you to always know where your vehicle is and retrieve it in case of theft, and many insurance companies actually charge less if you have such a system installed.
Some people put stickers announcing the tracking system on their cars. DON’T. The biggest advantage of a car tracker is that the burglar isn’t aware of its existence. By announcing the tracker, what you’re telling the burglar is that he should pick apart your car until he finds the tracker. If you don't own a tracker and are trying to bluff the thieves away, all you'll get for your effort is a broken-down car.
6. What are you driving?
Anti car theft: fancy car
You might be thinking that the flashier and fancier the car is, the likelier it is to be targeted for theft. Well, you’d be wrong. Get into the mindset of a thief: what stolen jacket would you rather wear in public, an unassuming windbreaker that every other guy owns, or a mink fur coat?
It’s not just that high-end cars stand out more, it’s also that such cars often come equipped with parts that are highly specific to the model and make, and are thus of lesser value on the black market.
This also holds true to color, as thieves go for more popular and common color choices, such as black, blue and silver. By picking a less popular finish, you would be discouraging thieves, and the more garish, the more secure your car will be. 
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