Every year, many folks across the country wait in anticipation of reviewing the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) "Hot Wheels: America's 10 Most Stolen Vehicles" report. The NCIB is the nation's not-for-profit trade group, solely committed to preventing, detecting and defeating insurance fraud and car theft through investigations, advocacy, data collection and public awareness. Statisticians at NICB gather data from law enforcement to determine which vehicles can be categorized as "hot wheels" or the most sought after cars by thieves.
Just released data from NICB points to the Honda Accord as reigning supreme with regards to car thefts. The Japanese automaker's older Accords that were built before 1997, claims top prize for the fifth year in a row, as the most enticing vehicle for thieves on the prowl for a solidly built automobile. As a matter of fact, nearly 554,000 Accords were snatched from owners in 2013 states the NICB report.
Check out ten of the most stolen vehicles across these shores according to NICB (total thefts in parenthesis):
1. Honda Accord (53,995)
2. Honda Civic (45,001)
3. Chevrolet Pickup (Full Size) (27,809)
4. Ford Pickup (Full Size) (26,494)
5. Toyota Camry (14,420)
6. Dodge Pickup (Full Size) (11,347)
7. Dodge Caravan (10,911)
8. Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee (9,272)
9. Toyota Corolla (9,010)
10. Nissan Altima (8,892)
Even though car theft is still a problem despite the anti-theft deterrents, the FBI reportedly is still hopeful that the rate will be considerably less than it was in 2012 when there was quite a spike according to NICB. “The drop in thefts is good news for all of us,” said NICB President and CEO Joe Wehrle in a press release. “But it still amounts to a vehicle being stolen every 45 seconds and losses of over $4 billion a year. That’s why we applaud the vehicle manufacturers for their efforts to improve anti-theft technology and pledge to continue to work with our insurance company members and law enforcement to identify and seek vigorous prosecution of the organized criminal rings responsible for so many of these thefts.”
Meanwhile, NICB recommends drivers play it smart when it comes to safeguarding their vehicles and offers four strategies for keeping car thieves at bay:
- Lock your car and take the key, a simple enough rule but surprisingly, there are still far too many absentminded owners who forget to do this.
- Install a warning device that can be seen or heard by anyone contemplating making your ride, theirs! Car thieves want to commit the crime and not be obvious and installing anti-car theft devices, makes their job harder.
- Consider an immobilizing device that will prevent your car from starting up. Unless the thief plans on towing your vehicle, a car that can't start is useless to them.
- Use a tracking device that can be monitored by law enforcement or a private monitoring station. If the thieves manage to steal your car, the tracking device can pinpoint its location.