PARK FOREST – Owners of Kia and Hyundai vehicles are being advised to park their cars in garages following a nationwide criminal trend called the “Kia Challenge”.
According to Park Forest Police, the trend has emerged that went viral on social media outlining methods to exploit security flaws in Kia vehicles from 2011-2021 and Hyundai vehicles from 2015-2021.
Those vehicles are not equipped with a push button start and can be more easily hot wired than other manufacturers.
“In the past two days, there have been several Hyundai and Kia vehicles stolen or attempted to be stolen in our village.” Park Forest police reported Saturday. “Park Forest Police have also recovered several vehicles that had been stolen from nearby communities.”
Witnesses to some of the thefts reported seeing offenders as young as 12 leaving the vehicles behind.
“We urge owners of these vehicles, as well as all vehicle owners, to take steps to prevent theft. Park in a garage if possible,” Park Forest Police said.
The Will County Sheriff’s Office has taken three reports attempted thefts of Kia vehicles this week:
“The Sheriff’s Office has been advised that a recently new viral video posted on social media may have sparked these thefts. The video, commonly referred to as the “Kia Challenge”, dares people to steal Kia’s or Hyundai’s taking advantage of a default in the security issues related to these vehicles.”