With car prices surging, yours is a prime target for thieves

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You can blame the Covid pandemic for one more factor: a surge in auto thefts.

Vehicle thefts within the United States jumped 9% final yr from a yr earlier to 873,000, the best quantity in additional than a decade, in response to statistics from the National Insurance Crime Bureau supplied to CNBC’s “American Greed.”

The pandemic created a “perfect storm” of circumstances for auto thefts to extend, mentioned NICB President and CEO David Glawe.

“We have a lot of disenfranchised youth that are unemployed, and outreach programs are shut down or limited due to Covid,” he mentioned. “There is frustration and anger in society. We are also seeing public safety resource limitations and withdrawal of proactive policing due to budget constraints.”

Vehicles are additionally particularly precious today. Because of tight provide and heavy post-pandemic demand, used car prices are up practically 30% from a yr in the past.

The improve in thefts started slowly, coinciding with the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020. They accelerated by final June as the primary wave of Covid lockdowns subsided and a second wave loomed. By November, month-to-month thefts had been working 18% forward of 2019.

The greatest soar was in Chicago, which noticed a 134% improve in car thefts final yr, the NICB mentioned. The Chicago Police Department mentioned it additionally recorded a doubling within the variety of carjackings.

“This has been a year that has presented numerous challenges to law enforcement,” Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown mentioned in a statement in January asserting the figures.

Numbers leveled off a bit as pandemic restrictions have subsided, however Chicago police data launched this month present thefts are nonetheless 9% greater than a yr in the past.

Elsewhere, thefts surged 68% in New York City and 50% in Washington, D.C., the NICB mentioned.

Hot commodity

How to thwart the thieves

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