GPS safety tip

dedtiredApril 23, 2010

We recently had items stolen from the cars on our street. Some numbskulls went around and stole small items out of unlocked cars. I almost always lock my car but it was open that night as well as in the driveway instead of the garage. They stole my GPS and cell phone charger.

The thieves were caught and I got my stuff back. Since then I have learned a very good tip I thought I would pass along.

The police were able to find me by getting my address from Home on the GPS. Burglars can do the same. If they steal your GPS when your car is not at home, they also know that you are not at home. They simply look at your Home address and go clean out your house.

So, be sure NOT to use your true home address. Use a commercial address nearby. I changed mine to the public library two blocks away.

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mustangs81

I'm glad that you were able to get your stuff back!

I read the same tip last week and made the adjustment. I keyed in the fire station in our community as our home. I have never left the GPS in the cradle/beanbag on the dash. I take beanbag and GPS and hide it when I exit the car. I'm sure though that those so motivated will still find a way to rip me off.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2010 at 12:30PM
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centralcacyclist

Do you think I'm safe with my stack of paper maps? ;)

    Bookmark   April 23, 2010 at 12:43PM
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dedtired

Barnmom, I don't know which is safer -- trying to read a map while driving or jumping out of your skin when the GPS voice announces an upcoming turn. I also have the urge to punch the damn thing every time it says "recalculating."

My GPS was in the console compartment of the car when it was stolen. That's how I knew it was gone - the console was open. My car is a stick and I rest my arm on the console while driving, so I always close it. It's a pain in the patootie to always have to hide it, but I do. I really don't use it much.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2010 at 1:03PM
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foodonastump

I don't know... Assuming that a house is vacant because GPS shows that one car isn't home at the very moment you stole said GPS would seem a heck of a way to try to find a vacant house.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2010 at 3:05PM
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dedtired

At least the crooks would know that one person wasn't home, so it's a start.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2010 at 3:18PM
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caliloo

Thanks for the tip!

Alexa

    Bookmark   April 23, 2010 at 7:08PM
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claire_de_luna

What a good idea! There police station is just a mile down the street from me, and I think that will be my new address.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2010 at 4:15PM
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kathleen_li

Thanks, I am going to remove my home addy right now!

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 12:00PM
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foodonastump

I did a little searching and it does seem this is at least a "slightly more than negligible" threat. One thing of interest is that if they steal your garage door opener at the same time, now they know what house they have easy access to.

Whatever the risk level, I suppose it can't hurt to change your home address. I think I'll program in a nearby crack house and hope that street justice prevails if someone steals my GPS and tries to use it for burglary!

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 12:48PM
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sushipup1

Don't get lulled into a false sense of security. There's also your car's registration to steal, which also has your address.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 12:56PM
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dedtired

I keep my registration in my pocketbook, not in the car. I guess this might not work if more than one person drives the car. I'm sure there are other ways to ID a person from whatever is in the car, but why not reduce the odds.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 1:42PM
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annie1992

Dedtired, I swear that woman sighs before she says "recalculating". And I always expect to hear her say "D*mn It" after she tells me to make a U-turn as soon as possible for about the 4th time...

I don't have the GPS in the Jeep, Elery uses it in the car when we take a trip somewhere. I use maps, like Eileen. I just like them better and I don't have a phone charger for my vehicle. Not that my cell phone is ever actually charged anyway.

My registration and proof of insurance (which also has my address on it) is in the console which locks and is always locked unless I need something in there. Then it gets locked back up.

Locking the Jeep isn't really a deterrent anyway. I have a hard top, but the doors are still canvas.

Annie

    Bookmark   April 26, 2010 at 4:24PM
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shaun

That's it - I'm moving!

    Bookmark   April 27, 2010 at 2:07PM
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dedtired

Shaun, just don't tell your GPS where you're going and that way you'll be safe.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2010 at 3:31PM
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