NICB data finds car thieves don't take breaks for the holidays

(November 19, 2014) DES PLAINES, Ill. — Car thieves don't take a break for the holidays, according to new data released today by the National Insurance Crime Bureau.  NICB's 2013 Annual Holiday Vehicle Theft Report analyzes data from the National Crime Information Center (NCIC), which showed a total of 708,909 vehicle thefts for the year.

New Year's resolutions apparently didn't stop thieves on Jan. 1, 2013, the number one holiday for vehicle thefts with 2,184 vehicles stolen.  Their hearts may have softened for Valentine's Day, though, when thefts dropped to 1,757. 

Thieves apparently weren't feeling the spirit on Independence Day either, when thefts dropped to 1,750, and there were apparently more tricks than treats for Halloween when thefts spiked to 1,998.  And perhaps thieves ate too much turkey on Thanksgiving and Christmas when thefts were at their holiday lowest, at 1,353 and 1,244 thefts respectively.

Holidays ranked by the number of thefts in 2013 were:

1. New Year's Day (2,184)
2. Halloween (1,998)
3. Memorial Day (1,972)
4. Labor Day (1,915)
5. Presidents' Day (1,894)
6. Christmas Eve (1,774)
7. Valentine's Day (1,757)
8. Independence Day (1,750)
9. New Year's Eve (1,715)
10. Thanksgiving (1,353)
11. Christmas Day (1,224)

By comparison, the day in all of 2013 with most vehicle thefts occurred on Aug. 12 with 2,316.  The day in all of 2013 with the least vehicle thefts was Christmas Day with 1,224.

The NICB also reminds drivers to take extra care during the busy holiday shopping season. Aside from vehicle thefts, vehicle burglaries also increase in activity. Drivers should make sure they park in well-lit areas and keep packages in the trunk. Leave nothing visible in the interior and, as always, ensure your vehicle is locked before leaving it.

Anyone with information concerning insurance fraud or vehicle theft can report it anonymously by calling toll-free 800-TEL-NICB (800-835-6422), texting keyword "fraud" to TIP411 (847411) or submitting a form on our website. Or, download the NICB Fraud Tips app on your iPhone or Android device.

About the National Insurance Crime Bureau: headquartered in Des Plaines, Ill., the NICB is the nation's leading not-for-profit organization exclusively dedicated to preventing, detecting and defeating insurance fraud and vehicle theft through data analytics, investigations, training, legislative advocacy and public awareness.