Social media challenges are making some people do some crazy things, and one of the latest challenges is stealing cars. The Tik Tok trend called Kia Boyz first came out in 2021 but has recently gained some speed, creating a spike in Kia thefts. If you own a Kia, you can find out more about how to protect it by contacting your Kia dealer.
What is the Kia Boyz Tik Tok Challenge?
The thefts started two years ago in Milwaukee and quickly spread to other Midwest cities. TikTok videos had step-by-step how to steal a Kia using only a USB charging cord. Some of the videos showed the how-to videos and then showed the teens taking the cars for a joy ride before crashing them or dumping them. The videos resulted in a large rise in car thefts.
Why Kia Models?
The reason the thieves could steal the Kia models is that some of the lower-trim models still use physical keys and don’t have ignition immobilizers. In vehicles that do have an anti-theft immobilizer, the key has a computer chip that verifies that the key a driver puts into the ignition is legitimate, which allows it to start. Without this chip, the engine is much easier to get started.
How Do I Protect My Kia from the Tik Tok Trend?
If you have an older model Kia, an old-fashioned theft deterrent is your best answer. There was a time when immobilizers were not part of car design, so car owners had to take it upon themselves to protect their vehicles. An aftermarket steering lock will easily do the trick. It goes over the steering wheel and makes it extremely hard to turn. These steering wheel locks won’t come off without a key, so even if a thief got the car started, they wouldn’t be able to drive anywhere.
You can also protect your car by making sure it is locked before you walk away, parking in well-lit areas, and installing an alarm system. Making the car more difficult to steel may deter thieves. After-market vehicle immobilizers are also available. You can talk to a Kia dealer service department to find out if one will work in your Kia
Newer Model Kias
If you’re heading to your Kia dealer to trade in your car for a newer Kia, rest assured that 2022 models and newer ones will come standard with the ignition immobilizer. Kia is still working on other solutions for the older model Kias. While the older models meet federal safety standards, unfortunately, thieves have targeted the older technology.
While many Tik Tok challenges are harmless, this trend can cause harm to Kia owners and the thieves, who tend to be young. Kia is working to make steering wheel locks available at no cost to help prevent theft. Your Kia dealer will have more information about where you can get one if you own a vulnerable model.
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