By Greg Bartlett
Insurance companies have long recognized the value of GPS tracking in aiding the recovery of stolen vehicles. In fact, most insurance companies offer substantial savings to their customers in the form of lower premiums if they have a GPS device installed in their insured vehicles. Allstate Auto Insurance Company is now going a step further in an all out effort to reduce the number of car thefts that take place in this country. They are donating cars equipped with a great deal of high tech equipment, including hidden cameras, GPS technology, and remote kill switches, to 14 cities in the nation that have a high rate of automobile theft.
Nobody but the local police forces in these cities will know what make or model of car is set up as a bait car. The goal is to put a car in a position where it will be tempting to would-be thieves. As soon as the car goes into motion, the GPS tracking device alerts police nearby who can attempt to stop the car. If the thieves attempt to flee, the officers can trigger a remote kill switch that will shut down the car’s engine and effectively stop it. The GPS data log and the images recorded by hidden cameras will be used as evidence when the case goes to court.
This is a more proactive approach to the use of GPS tracking in the deterring of car thefts. However, if the bait car is tempting enough, thieves may find themselves hooked and reeled in with record ease because of the ability of police to locate the car and follow its movements, no matter what time of day or night the theft occurs.
GPS auto tracking has been used as a tool for tracking and recovering stolen cars for quite some time now. In this case, the technology is being used as a deterrent and a method of catching thieves by placing bait in front of them and making the catch when they attempt to steal the car rather than waiting until after the damage is done. And, of course, this program is sponsored by a large insurance company who has a vested interest in reducing the number of cars stolen as a step to reducing the number of dollars they pay out each year in claims that arise from vehicle thefts and damages that occur as a result of thefts.