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Keyless van theft on the increase

Van operators are being urged to safeguard their vehicles as new figures show a rise in keyless van theft in 2017.

White van on road
Tracker said criminals are using more sophisticated theft techniques to overcome vehicle security technology, such as immobilisers and keyless entry systems.

Data from Tracker for recovered LCVs shows that 82% of the vans were stolen without the owner’s keys – up by nearly 100% from the figure of 44% for 2016.

The recovery specialist said the increase was due to rising uptake of keyless entry technology in the van marketplace.

Andy Barrs, head of police liaison at Tracker, said: “The relatively new trend in vehicle theft termed ‘relay attack’, that allows criminals to harness more sophisticated theft techniques to overcome existing vehicle security technology, such as immobilisers and keyless entry systems, has played a significant part in this increase.”

Tracker added that the cost of having a van stolen goes beyond the actual cost of the vehicle and also covers tool replacement, increased insurance premiums, administration and loss of business.

Barrs continued: “It is worth remembering it’s not just about protecting your van from being stolen but safeguarding your business too. Technology is just one part of vehicle security and more vigilance needs to be taken across the board; this includes van owners, manufacturers, dealers, insurers and the police. Whilst a tracking device won’t stop a van being stolen, it can significantly increase the chances of the police locating and returning it to its rightful owner.”

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Written by Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.

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