Government initiatives highlight focus on fighting vehicle theft

by | Feb 21, 2024 | 0 comments

In Monteal, a federal investment of $15 million has been announced to support law enforcement agencies’ work to combat vehicle theft.

Some $9.1 million will be extended to provincial, territorial and municipal police forces through the Contribution Program to Combat Serious and Organized Crime (CPCSOC) to increase their capacity to take custody of detained stolen vehicles from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA).

The Port of Montreal has been identified as a key export point for stolen vehicles being shipped overseas and recently more than 70 vehicles were intercepted on their way out of the port in a single operation.

While the issue of vehicle theft touches all parts of our society including the aftermarket, especially when it involves a vehicles that may have been left for service at an automotove service provider, the current ramping up of efforts to combat vehicle theft should also be noted for the potential impact it may have on the right to repair battle. As automakers look to control data and ramp up cybersecurity messaging, this space should be one watched carefully by aftermarket players.

In addition, to enhance information sharing and investigative tactics to identify and retrieve stolen vehicles and parts around the world, INTERPOL’s joint transnational vehicle crime project will receive $3.5 million. 

The Government of Canada will also continue to engage its domestic and international partners to ensure a coordinated response to this issue, supported through an investment of $2.4 million.

Auto theft is impacting thousands of households every year, particularly in our urban centres. It increasingly involves organized crime groups, who are using the proceeds of those thefts to fund other illegal activities.

The announcement is another step the Government of Canada is taking to combat auto theft, building on these recent actions:

  • Increasing the capacity of the CBSA by investing $28 million to detect and search shipping containers for stolen vehicles, as well as enhance collaboration on intelligence sharing with partners across Canada and internationally to help identify those involved within the supply chain and arrest those who are perpetuating these crimes. This includes exploring detection technology solutions and the use of advanced analytical tools, such as artificial intelligence.
  • Pursuing all avenues to ban devices used to steal vehicles by copying the wireless signals for remote keyless entry, such as the Flipper Zero, which would allow for the removal of those devices from the Canadian marketplace through collaboration with law enforcement agencies.
  • Modernizing the Canadian Motor Vehicle Safety Standards to ensure they consider technological advancements to deter and prevent auto theft.
  • Examining potential amendments to the Criminal Code to further strengthen the legal framework related to auto theft, including by reviewing existing offences and penalties.
  • Investing $121 million to help prevent gun and gang violence in Ontario, including organized crime and auto theft, through the Initiative to take Action Against Gun and Gang Violence (ITAAGGV).

The Government of Canada and its partners continue to work together to identify solutions to this issue. At the conclusion of the recent National Summit on Combatting Auto Theft, participants endorsed a Statement of Intent and are working to finalize an action plan, which will be released this winter.


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