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Los Angeles police report recent Chevrolet Camaro thefts are through the roof. During the first two months of 2023, thieves in LA stole seven recent Camaros. In 2024, that number’s already up to 90. What’s more, there’s a pattern to these thefts that may help you keep your Chevy Camaro safe.

Social media is causing “trends” of certain makes and models being stolen. Various Kias, Hundais, and Stellantis products have all had a turn in the spotlight. What’s actually going on is that clever thieves are finding vulnerabilities specific cars have, then sharing them on social media.

In this case, it looks like the thieves grabbing most Camaros in LA aren’t even professionals intent on reselling them. See, the LAPD is cracking down on street takeovers. That’s when a bunch of hoonigans pick an intersection and stop traffic by doing donuts and other stunts until the police arrive. The department has even started seizing and crushing these lawbreakers’ vehicles. Instead of finding something better to do with their time, many of them have resorted to stealing vehicles instead.

Stolen yellow Chevrolet Camaro abandoned in Los Angeles after theft
Chevrolet Camaro | ULU Bird via iStockPhoto

If the vehicles aren’t seized, the thieves might try to sell them after. But they are just trying to unload them quickly. Authorities said of one criminal, “This young person was stealing the Camaros and taking them to street takeovers and then selling them for $2,000 or $3,000 on social media.”

What’s the theft method? Police say the thieves are using a sort of repeater to amplify the signal of your key fob and start the car. To pull this off, they stand near your front door, hoping you store your key there, then have a friend check if the car is unlocked. This is not a brand-new method, but these devices may be getting cheaper. The latest generation of extenders may also have a longer range.

So what can you do? First of all, store your keys as far away from your car as possible. Keeping your fob near your bed has the added benefit of allowing you to trigger your car alarm if you see any funny business at night.

Another line of defense is to order a special key fob signal blocker box to store your keys. If you can’t get a purpose-built box, you can also put your fob in a tin box or even wrap it in aluminum foil. This will greatly reduce the signal. Do remember that your spare key fob is just as much of a risk as your primary. So think about where you store that too.

Next, find out why a mysterious light may mean your vehicle is being tracked, or see more ways to protect any car from keyless theft in the video below: