June 6, 2023

Vehicle theft reaches a crisis level as Canada becomes a source nation for illegal trade

Équité Association recommends a layered approach to combat the dramatic increase in Canadian vehicle thefts

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TORONTO – June 6, 2023/CNW/ Today, Équité Association released its 2022 Vehicle Theft Trend Report, and the numbers are staggering. For the first time in history, insurers lost over one billion dollars in stolen vehicles, which directly impacts Canadians at a time when inflation and affordability are putting excess strain on consumers.

The trend clearly indicates that organized crime syndicates are looking at stolen vehicles in Canada as a low-risk/high-reward opportunity, regardless if the vehicles are for export or domestic sale. Illegal profit margins are very high and the risk of prosecution is considerably low.

“There is no doubt that vehicle theft has reached a national crisis in this country,” said Terri O’Brien, President & CEO of Équité Association. “We know for certain that vehicles in Canada are being stolen by domestic and international criminal organizations. The proceeds are then being used to finance domestic drug trafficking, arms dealing, human trafficking, and international terrorism. These crimes hurt our communities, and puts Canada in the spotlight internationally as a source country for illegal trade.”

For those provinces where data was available, Canadians witnessed double-digit increases in vehicle theft in 2022, with the provincial breakdowns as follows:

  • Ontario up 48.3% year over year
  • Quebec up 50% year over year
  • Alberta up 18.3% year over year (after several years of decline)
  • Atlantic Canada up 34.5% year over year

There are however, measures Canadians can take to put a stop to this alarming increase in vehicle theft.  Équité Association recommends a four-step layered approach as the best way to protect your vehicle.

“The techniques the criminals are employing are constantly evolving and becoming more sophisticated,” said Bryan Gast, VP of Investigative Services at Équité Association. “Adopting a layered approach is the best way for Canadians protect themselves, their families and their vehicles. Remember, when it comes to vehicle theft, the best offense is a good defense.”  

The full 2022 Vehicle Theft Trend Report can be found here. The report also includes the information for applying a layered approach to protect your vehicle.

About Équité Association

Équité Association is a not-for-profit, national organization, supporting Canadian property and casualty (P&C) insurers. Équité combats the insurance crime problem that exploits vulnerable Canadians through advanced analytics, intelligence best practices, and coordinated investigations. Delivering improved service and fraud analytics for vehicle, property, and cargo recovery to its members, Équité collaborates with law enforcement, partners and industry organizations to protect Canadians against exploitation.

For further information, contact Jordan Kerbel, Director, Media Relations, Équité Association, media@equiteco.ca

Learn more about Équité Association at https://www.equiteassociation.com/.