The NYPD is taking action to prevent car theft in New York City with the help of the Association for a Better New York (ABNY), which has donated 500 AirTags to be distributed to car owners. As per ABC, there has been a 13% increase in vehicle theft citywide compared to the same period last year, with almost 4,500 vehicles reported stolen.
The NYPD has attributed one of the reasons for the rise in thefts to TikTok users who are providing instructions on how to steal Kias and Hyundais. “This year alone, we have 966 Hyundais and Kias taken,” said NYPD Chief of Patrol John Chell. The automakers are offering owners free software updates to address this issue.
In addition to stories of people placing AirTags in their cars to prevent theft, Chief of Patrol John Chell is advising citizens to get their own AirTag to help combat the problem. By attaching an AirTag to their vehicle, owners will receive alerts on their phones if someone who is not authorized to be in their car enters it, or if it is stolen. They can then call 911 and inform the responding officers that they have an AirTag, which will help the authorities quickly locate the vehicle using the citywide apprehension system.
Priced at $30, the AirTag is a small tracking device that connects to your iPhone and only requires charging about once a year. By using the Find My app, you can easily locate your AirTag and the object it’s attached to. Apple utilizes the Find My network, which is an anonymous network consisting of millions of Apple devices that can help you track down your lost items.
If you attach an AirTag to your car, it will update its location every time it comes within range of an Apple device that’s connected to the internet.
To combat the increase in car thefts in New York City, the Association for a Better New York will be donating 500 AirTags to the NYPD. The police department will announce through its Twitter account how the item trackers will be distributed to citizens of the city.