ARMD reveals how thieves are breaking into trade vehicles

ARMD reveals how thieves are breaking into trade vehicles

With tool theft still at record breaking levels, the team at ARMD reveals exactly how thieves are breaking into trade vehicles and how you can counteract this.

UK businesses reported £3.5 billion worth of stolen equipment last year and more than a third of van drivers fell victim to thefts, according to a report by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.

The manufacturer found that almost 50% of van drivers keep more than £2,150 worth of tools in their vans overnight. This means that UK tradespeople are risking up to £5 billion in lost equipment.

Steve Holland, co-founder of ARMD, explains: “The methods used by thieves to gain access to vans have evolved over time, becoming more sophisticated and challenging to prevent.

“Understanding these methods is crucial for tradespeople to safeguard their tools and livelihood.”

He continues: “Given these varied and sophisticated methods of theft, it’s clear why some traditional van alarms might not be sufficient. Vehicle alarm sirens are often ignored by both passer-by and the thieves themselves.

“They’re also usually only triggered if the thief breaks into the cab, when the vast majority of the time the tools are in the back of the van.

“In contrast, a system like ARMD Guard employs advanced technology to detect unusual activities or movements in the back of the van, potentially alerting the owner before the theft occurs.

“If they manage to unplug the device it triggers a phone call to the owner and if they try and take the whole van it’s built-in GPS tracks it.”

To show the scale of the problem, ARMD has identified how thieves are gaining entry to commercial vehicles and their precious contents:

1. Peel ’n’ steal

Using sheer brute-force, thieves physically peel back the side doors of the van. This technique involves applying force to the door or window to bend or break it open. It’s a quick method that can also be surprisingly quiet, making it less likely to attract attention.

2. Keyless entry hacks

The advent of keyless entry systems was seen as a step forward in vehicle security. But thieves have found ways to exploit these systems using electronic devices. These devices can intercept the signal from the key fob and replicate it to unlock the van without any physical key.

This method is particularly concerning because it leaves no signs of forced entry, making it difficult for victims to prove the theft to insurance companies.

3. Tampering with locks

Another common method is the manipulation or breaking of the van’s locks. Thieves may use various tools to pick locks or many resort to drilling them out.

4. Breaking windows

Thieves may also simply break the van’s windows to gain access. This method is noisy and conspicuous, so it’s often used as a last resort or in areas where the thief feels confident they won’t be disturbed.

5. Cutting through the van

In some cases thieves might cut through the van’s body to access the cargo area, using tools like saws or angle grinders.

The ARMD GUARD Smart Van Alarm is a plug-and-play sensor that is easy to install and, in the event of a break-in, the alarm immediately notifies the owner via a phone call, allowing them to take immediate action by contacting the police.

It also incorporates GPS tracking, so if the van does get stolen it can help the owner locate and recover the vehicle.

Get more details about the ARMD Guard Smart Van Alarm here

Read more industry feature articles here

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