Car cloning is when a criminal clones your car’s identity to disguise their car’s own, original identity. This involves either taking the number plate of a registered, licenced car and placing it on a car (stolen or otherwise) of similar model and colour. It can also be done by ordering licence plates that are copies of another car.
Why do they do it?
People clone cars for different reasons. Some are trying to avoid speeding tickets or fines by having them sent to a different person instead. The person whose car has been cloned will then receive fines that they did not actually get.
Other times it’s for much worse reasons. Criminals also use cloned cars to commit serious crimes like armed robbery and drug trafficking.
This is all done to shroud their own car’s identity with someone that is completely unrelated to any crimes they might commit.
How would I know my car has been cloned?
People whose cars have been cloned usually find out by one of two ways.
- They start receiving parking tickets, speeding fines, and more from places that they’ve never been to.
- The worse scenario would be that the police arrest you for the crimes ascribed to your vehicle’s registration.
Both of these scenarios will require an incredible amount of legal action and exhausting investigation to clear up the mistake.
So, what do I need to do?
While there’s no hard and fast way to make sure your car never gets cloned, you can still be observant and alert to catch it as soon as it happens. Keep track of your vehicle’s fines and tickets and make sure you can match them up to your own actions. If you are even slightly unsure of any of the fines, visit your relevant authority to inquire about it.
If it does turn out that your car has been cloned, make sure to co-operate fully with the police, DMV, and any other relevant authorities. While it will by no means be a pleasant experience, you can still get it over with as quickly as possible by providing authorities as much help and patience as you can.