Car security explored

With the exception of the 2011/12 financial year, car thefts have been falling for the past 10 years. Like the dramatic falls in car related fatalities, huge improvements have been seen in the area but as long as cars are still being stolen and unrecoved there is still room for improvement. With all that in mind we thought we would go through some of the important features which may help in your efforts to protect your car.

What are the most popular/standard features?

The standard security features  are exactly that, they're standard features for most new and a large proportion of older cars. Anyone buying a new or used car should expect most if not all of them to come with a vehicle and as the years go by their absence will become less and less common.

The immobiliser – this is a device which is fitted to a vehicle which stops the engine from running unless the correct key is present.
Car alarm – this long standing feature varies from the original pressure sensor activated alarm to the more sophisticated alarms which react differently to different and at times minute pressures.
Central locking/remote locking – this simple feature allows owners to lock all doors simultaneously with one button and helps avoid opportunistic break ins.

What are the up and coming security devices?

Data dot – this is a very simple system which covers the vehicle in a large number of micro dots which identify both the vehicle and the vehicle owner. Essentially it makes it difficult for a chop shop to resell parts.
Radio/GPS tracking devices – these track the vehicle with the help of either radio or GPS devices. This helps in the recovery of the vehicle.
Multi setting alarms – these can detect something as slight as a key being applied to the side of your vehicle. The alarm can be set to match the severity of the contact with the loudness of the alarm.
Long distance unlock key – these can be used to monitor and control the doors and other openings of your vehicle from further away than normal. Some even have an LCD display to show the status of the vehicle.

The extreme cases

Anti hijack system – these systems usually work in a few parts. The most typical ones are a lockout and transponder. A lockout system locks all doors and entrances on vehicle ignition while a transponder will stop the car working once the designated driver (who carries the transponder) is out of a specified range.
The Beast – the beast or the presidential state car as its officially known is the most talked about mobile fortress on the planet. Some of the extreme measures which you will probably never see in a conventional vehicle include a blood bank, biochemical sealing and a US military command and control unit.
The diplomat vehicle – These are basically scaled down, lower features versions  of the US presidential state car. Typically they include a number of features like inch thick glass, armour plating and run-flat tyres.


Car theft in Australia is relatively low in comparison with some of the more heated parts of the world. That said its still a good idea to protect yourself from damage and theft. Most vehicles have a standard alarm, immobiliser and locking system however most don’t have any features to aid recovery. This is the real area motorists should be focusing on especially as it can have an impact on insurance premiums. With this in mind it might be worth running an eye over your vehicle and weighing up some of the more reliable recovery related add-ons.

Have you had a car security nightmare?

What do you think of current car security devices? 

Please comment below.

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