Electric car owners warned of huge spike in thefts of charging cables

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Many scrap and recycling businesses are also receiving more questions regarding electric car chargers – including how much they would pay for one. The scrap value for expensive copper in a cable may be worth around £50 to a thief.

However, a brand new replacement charger could cost the driver around £700.

Experts are warning that stolen cables are likely to be sold on second-hand websites like eBay and Facebook Marketplace.

With the Government pushing for more electric cars to be sold, theft increases may increase over the coming years.

It is feared that the costs could overtake the current £10million a year it costs to replace catalytic converters.

Mike Thompson, Chief Operating Officer at Leasing Options, warned drivers to ensure their charging cables are securely stored.

He said: “Unfortunately, it is relatively straightforward for thieves to take charging cables, especially while they’re on charge. 

“Software experts have also highlighted that some EV chargers had cyber security flaws, which meant they could be accessed remotely to unlock charge points.

“Clearly, this isn’t great news for electric car owners.”

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An RAC spokesperson said charging cables are going to be high on the list for opportunist thieves.

They warned drivers to stay close to their cars when charging in public, rather than wandering off.

There are currently no official figures on cable thefts, but the Association of British Insurers admits it is a growing crime and could lead to a rise in motor insurance premiums. 

Mr Thompson added: “However, there are some extra steps EV owners can take to protect their electric car charger from being targeted. 

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“Including removing the charger from your car at night, installing a dash camera and using a padlock.”

Drivers are being urged to take some expert tips into consideration to minimise the risk of having their charging cables stolen.

One of the most common pieces of advice would be to try and charge the vehicle at home and away from street view.

This may be difficult given that around 25 percent of households in the UK don’t have access to off-street parking outside their homes.

For those that day, installing an electric car charger in a garage or away from street view can massively reduce the risk of being victimised.

Padlocks are another great way to deter thieves, and they can be used on cables.

In addition, many electric vehicles have a loop to secure your lock in place while it’s charging.  

In some cases, and depending on the wheels they have, motorists can loop the cable through the wheel and place the padlock on the cable.

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