Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Kia and Hyundai are offering a free software update after the viral TikTok "Kia Challenge" was connected to a massive increase in thefts


A video was posted on TikTok on July 12, 2022 where the author uses a USB connector on a naked key slot and successfully hotwires a car


In Los Angeles, the trend has been linked to an 85% increase in thefts of Kia and Hyundai vehicles in 2022 compared to 2021. In Chicago, thefts of the affected vehicle models increased by over nine times, and children as young as 11 were reported to have participated in these thefts


Insurance companies have taken notice of the elevated theft rates. State Farm said in January that it has temporarily stopped offering insurance for some model years and trim levels of Hyundai and Kia vehicles in some states because thieves were targeting the cars.  

The Verge today:

Previously, Hyundai was charging owners at least $170 for security kits to fix the issue. With installation and labor, those costs could soar to $500. 


Hyundai and Kia are [now] offering free software updates