Car theft is a scary trend that’s been increasing this month. St. Petersburg police say that 23 out of 56 cars stolen since July 11 have been Kia or Hyundai models. That’s about 41% of thefts reported, according to local police.
KIA & Hyundai Theft Alert!#stpete pd is seeing an unusual trend.Since July 11th, 23 out of 56 stolen cars have been Kia/Hyundais models 2021 and older,that use keys to start.— St. Pete Police (@StPetePD) July 27, 2022
Anyone with a KIA/Hyundai that uses a key, **please** #lockitup pic.twitter.com/l2ZwVHP7cd
But why is it happening to mostly these models? Well mostly older Kia and Hyundai cars don’t have an engine immobilizer, which is an electronic security feature that keeps cars from being hot-wired. So if you’re car is a 2022 model, you may not have to worry as much.
Believe it or not, criminals are getting tips from the social media app TikTok. A new “challenge” has created viral videos that show people breaking into cars and tampering with the steering column and turning on other people’s vehicles.
So what do you do if you own an older model of these cars? The easiest solution is to make sure your car is locked no matter where you go. Even if you’re running into a convenient store real quick, it’s better to lock your car than endanger yourself or your belongings.
If you have any information on these thefts happening in St. Pete, you can submit an anonymous tip here or by texting your tip to 847411 (TIP411)