Serious About Recovering Your Stolen Car? Go Unconventional

It can be a terrible experience to stand in an empty parking slot and see that your car is simply not there anymore. As depressing a feeling as it can be, though, it’s important to take a few steps immediately. You need to improve your chances of finding your car and minimize the fallout.

Your first steps

Parking areas can be confusing. Many car theft reports happen simply because the owners have forgotten where exactly they parked their car. Sometimes, it turns out that their car was towed for outstanding parking tickets or car loan payments. You could ask people standing around it if they saw a tow truck, for instance.

Once you are sure that your car is in fact stolen, you need to begin with the first steps to recover your property. The police and the insurance company need to know about it right away. If you subscribe to a car tracking service like OnStar, you could need to call them, too.

There is one more step to think about – considering identity theft. Many people leave important scraps of information in their cars – something from the bank, the car’s registration or insurance card and so on. Criminals can easily use these for identity theft. To minimize the damage possible, you should call the credit bureaus and place a credit lock on your name.

Who will help you find your car?

Stretched as they are, law enforcement officials usually recognize their limited ability in dealing with car theft. While the police have always stressed the importance of involving the community in solving crimes, the recommendation is actually easier to implement these days. The social networks, online forums and the Internet make it easy to put the word out and involve people.

Any forum could help. You should try Facebook, Twitter and every car forum and local community website you can find. You should leave pictures of your car and your phone number everywhere you go asking for help (you could get a disposable prepaid number just for this to protect your privacy).

Look for security cameras in the area

It was the security cameras that caught the Boston bombers. Look for private security cameras on buildings around the place you lost your car and then ask the security staff there to let you look at their footage.

You need plenty of eyes on the road looking out for your car

Finding a stolen car in a city can be extremely difficult. One thing that can help is to have as many eyes on the road as possible. Where are you going to find all these volunteers?

There are many people whose job involves driving around a lot – the tow truck companies, the pizza delivery people, messengers, postmen and so on. They don’t usually have owners of stolen cars asking them for a favor. If you go to them and ask them if they could keep an eye out you could get results. Announcing a small reward could help.

Most people don’t try this hard

It doesn’t take much time to take all of these steps. These do dramatically improve your chances of recovering your car.

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