As part of a series of crime prevention advice notices, the Metropolitan police have issued the following advice and simple steps to avoid becoming a victim of Car Crime:
· Always lock your vehicle and use an Alarm and Immobilizer. Motor cycles should have a disk lock fitted and be secured with a ground anchor.
· Always protect your keys, never leave a running vehicle unattended and place your keys and any vehicle documents out of sight in your home.
· Steering wheel locks or wheel clamps are also recommended.
· Fitting locking wheel nuts will reduce the likelihood of wheels and tyres from being stolen.
· Tamper resistant screws will prevent your number plates being stolen.
· All items should be taken with you or removed from open view and placed in the boot.
· Consider having your car or bike security marked with one of the recommended methods or fitted with a tracking device.
· When driving in slow moving traffic activate your central locking and keep your windows up and your handbag or valuables down in the footwell.
· When parking try to leave your vehicle in a safe place that is managed with security staff, good lighting, and CCTV surveillance – for a list of Police approved parking places please visit British Parking Association
Keyless car crime
· Ask to see proof of the seller's identity and address - an official letter or driving licence, for example.
· Make sure the vehicle's VIN matches that on the registration document (V5) - The VIN, formerly known as the chassis number, is a unique 17 character number issued to every vehicle by the manufacturer and can be found: Stamped on the body chassis or frame on a manufacturer's VIN plate under the bonnet or fixed to the post between the front and rear doors or on an additional plate fixed securely to the top corner of the dashboard where it can easily be seen through the windscreen - this is called a visible VIN.
· Never buy a vehicle without the registration document (V5) - make sure it has a DVLA watermark and has not been altered in any way.
· If in doubt, ask the AA, RAC or another reputable organisation to inspect the vehicle before agreeing to buy.
· You can check the vehicle's history and second-hand status by contacting Equifax HPI.
If you're buying a used vehicle, the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) can also tell you what it knows about the vehicle. That information can include the make and model, the year it was built, and whether tax is owed on the vehicle.
In an emergency you should dial 999, for all other calls to the Metropolitan Police Service please call 101 our non-emergency number. If you wish to report a crime, please see our section on reporting crime - click to report a crime
- Visit the Westminster Police Website