So you’ve outfitted your home with a brand new security system…only to realize your car remains vulnerable. While vehicles can sometimes be an afterthought when making security protocol arrangements, they shouldn’t be.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, there were more than 750,000 instances of grand theft auto in the United States in the year 2017 — and that doesn’t include the many, many times people had valuable items taken from vehicles that weren’t stolen.
If you are ready to take the plunge, you can install a comprehensive security system for your car to ward off intruders. If you’ve already done that and are looking to bolster your security — or if you’d like to try some a la carte solutions — there are plenty of safety tools you can employ.
Car Tracking And Remote Control Apps
Tracking apps track your car’s GPS via smartphone, so you can easily see the location of your car with the tap of a screen. This can be ideal for multiple situations: if your car is stolen, you can easily see its whereabouts. If you have a teen or elderly driver in your family, the apps can also provide an extra layer of supervision.
There are also apps that allow for remote control of a vehicle via smartphone. Features include remote unlocking — ideal if someone loses a physical key — and remote engine start, which can let you start cooling down or heating up a vehicle while you’re still walking towards it.
- MileIQ. Also designed to work for businesses that manage cars, MileIQ functions as a GPS tracker and also logs vehicle mileage data.
- Viper. The Viper app offers car tracking and location services, in addition to remote car start and lock. With more than 3 million app downloads, it’s clearly a popular choice, but it does require Viper hardware installation.
A dash cam — a camera installed on a car dashboard — can be a deterrent to would-be thieves and road raging drivers. The devices can help prevent illegal activity and provide helpful recording of accidents to send to insurance companies.
- YI 2.7″ Screen Full HD 1080P60 165 Wide Angle Dashboard Camera, $45. Coming in under $50, this dashcam has a four star-plus rating on Amazon and is a best seller.
- Rexing V1 Car Dash Cam 2.4″ LCD FHD 1080p 170 Degree Wide Angle Dashboard Camera Recorder with Sony Exmor Video Sensor, $100. A slightly pricier option, the Rexing V1 is reported to have excellent video quality.
For those who like to keep car security old-fashioned, there are plenty of non-tech anti-theft devices you can employ, such as hood, steering wheel and tire locks. These can be beneficial extra layers of security against cyber-related automobile theft like relay attacks. (There is no way to cyber-hack a physical lock!)
BlueTooth trackers can be of excellent help in keeping track of your car keys, which happen to be the primary building block to car safety and operation! How they work: attach a tracker to your car key (or any other valuable, easily lost item). Then, use a corresponding app on your phone to see information about the item’s location. You could also leave a Bluetooth tracker in your car, if that’s a better option.
- Tile Sport or Style, $35. Tile makes reliable trackers, with a great app.
- TrackR Bravo or Pixel, $30. TrackR’s tracker options offer battery replacement.
As you take pains to prevent against cyberattacks and home invasions, it’s easy to let vehicle safety fall by the wayside. Equip yourself with a few of these tools to inexpensively increase your car security.
For more information, check out our review of the best home security cameras.