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Alphabet calls for more driver education as vehicle theft hits ten-year high

Date: 09 November 2017

Business mobility company Alphabet has published a security and safety guide to help educate drivers about the latest cyber security and privacy, personal safety and vehicle security threats.

Recent figures released by the RAC point to a 30% increase in car thefts between 2013 and 2016.

"Fleet drivers are statistically more likely to be targeted by criminals, who are increasingly trying to exploit technology like keyless entry and remote ignition, as well as 'connected car' services, that are widely found in the latest, modern company vehicles," said John Chuhan, chief risk officer at Alphabet. "But this new 'tech' approach to car crime doesn't mean that the traditional threats to business drivers have gone away either."

Some high-end passenger cars today contain as many as 100 million lines of computer code, twice as many as the Large Hadron Collider and eight times more than in the flight systems of a Boeing 787 Dreamliner, the guide reports.

"As a business mobility company, we fully appreciate the advantages that organisations gain from these technologies in terms of mobility, connectivity and productivity," Chuhan said. "They make business travel easier and safer for employees, and help deliver on employer duty of care responsibility. Connected Car technologies also open up truly game-changing services for organisations, such as innovative Corporate CarSharing with AlphaCity and proactive servicing and maintenance via Teleservices.

"But there is a downside to this. Although car criminals are usually one step behind the manufacturers, they are often ahead of fleet decision-makers and company car drivers. So, we are publishing this new advice guide today to help fleets bring company drivers up to date with new risks to their security and that of their vehicle. These are practical steps every business driver can take to improve their personal and vehicle security."

Alphabet's guide covers three areas of security risk to drivers: outlining how criminals exploit them; suggesting ways in which drivers can protect themselves, and offering advice on what to do if they should become a victim.

"Drivers now need to be more aware of and vigilant against vehicle crime than has been the case in recent years," Chuhan concluded. "It's taken criminals more than 20 years to turn the tide of car crime briefly in their favour but if history is any guide, the automotive industry will anticipate and respond successfully to each new attempt by the 'bad guys' to exploit new advances in technology."



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