Your vehicle identification number can lead to a stolen car-Truth! & Fiction!

Your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) Can be Used by Thieves to Have a Key Made to Your CarTruth! & Fiction!

Summary of eRumor:

The eRumor warns that thieves can peer into your car, write down the Vehicle Identification Number, or VIN, take the number to a car dealer, have a new key made, and steal your car.  The email recommends covering up your Vehicle Identification Number so it can’t be seen.

The Truth:

It is true that Vehicle Identification Numbers can be used to generate a new key for many cars.  According to law enforcement sources, however, a person cannot simply walk into a dealership and have a key made.  Responsible dealerships require proof of ownership and some states have laws that require it.  Also, the Vehicle Identification Number is required to be visible.  That’s why it is located in a place where it can be easily seen such as on top of a dashboard.  While there are some thieves who may use VIN’s to have keys illegally made, the use of Vehicle Identification Numbers for locating and recovering stolen cars has been far more valuable than hiding them.