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Most cars are taken by amateurs who can be stopped. You can increase you protection against this type of crime by taking the following sensible precautions.
- An unlocked car is an open invitation to a car thief - and take the keys with you.
- Close all windows - professional thieves have tools that unlock cars through the smallest openings.
- When you park your car, remove the cell phone, cassette players and other valuable possessions. Do not leave gift-wrapped packages or cameras lying on the seat. Lock ALL valuables in the trunk or take them with you.
- Lock your car even if you are going to make a quick stop at a gas station or mini mall.
- Don't leave your auto in an unattended public parking lot for an extended period of time. A car is five times more likely to be stolen from an unattended lot than from the street or attended lot.
- If possible, park you car where you do not have to leave your keys. Only leave the ignition key if you have to leave the keys.
- Never attach a tag with your name and address on it.
- Park in well-lit areas at night with lots of people around.
- Turn your wheels sharply toward the curb. This will make it more difficult for thieves to tow your car.
- Keep your registration and proof of insurance in your wallet not the car.
- When buying a car, check out the anti-theft options, such as interior hood and trunk releases, locking steering columns and others.
- Consider the purchase of and installation of a security device's such as kill switches, fuel switch, locking gas cap, locking devices for batteries, wheels etc, alarms.
- Never leave your car running and unattended to warm it up in the morning.