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Title: Kids Are Stealing Hyundais and Kias. Government Officials Blame Hyundai and Kia—and TikTok.
Source: Reason
URL Source: https://reason.com/2023/03/22/kids- ... me-hyundai-and-kia-and-tiktok/
Published: Mar 22, 2023
Author: Joe Lancaster
Post Date: 2023-03-22 23:40:17 by Charles_Byrd
Keywords: None
Views: 59

All across the country, young people are stealing cars and taking them for joyrides, including teenagers who don't have driver's licenses. The trend is dangerous, having resulted in at least 14 recent crashes and eight deaths. And government officials in New York and California know exactly who to blame: carmakers. And for good measure, TikTok.

In July 2022, a TikTok user posted a video with the hashtag #kiaboyz in which young men steal a Kia using a USB cable. "You don't need a key, bro," one says as he uses the cable's plug to start the car. Known as the "Kia Challenge," the video went viral, and copycats followed. As the video demonstrated, certain Kia or Hyundai models manufactured between 2010 and 2021 lack an immobilizer, an anti-theft device that won't let the car start unless the correctly coded key is in the ignition, letting anyone steal them based on a little information gleaned from a short video.

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