San Francisco, the tech-focused paradise for the new upwardly mobile middle class, has been struggling with an epidemic of car jackings and break-ins; but an unexpected party might be behind the problem: Amazon.
While you cant find Confederate flags, the childrens toy Buckyballs, or leggings featuring Hindu gods, Amazon sells an array of various tools to help customers break into automobiles.
As the Daily Mail discovered, some of the tools found at Amazon allows users to even steal a car in two minutes. The devices, which range from electronic gadgets allowing you to reprogram an electronic car key, to simple lockpicks made for specific models of cars, can be found for just under $30.
“Its very sophisticated. Within seconds, with no security needed, I can get into it and drive off,” Peter Thompson, who works for a stolen vehicle recovery service, told the Mail. “This is a very common form of attack. Amazon and eBay are unwittingly making the availability of the latest electronic attack tools freely available to anyone and on a next-day-delivery basis.”
The Daily Caller News Foundation conducted its own search of Amazon and found a number of items for purchase that market themselves as tools to help car owners stuck in a jam but can easily be appropriated for more nefarious intentions.
For just around $50.00, individuals can purchase a two-in-one, car-door lock pick “decoder” that can grant users entry to locked doors and trunks “within 3 minutes,” the product description boasts.
An ambitious criminal can also purchase a blank key fob and key programmer, which would allow him to easily and inconspicuously steal the car. On the item page for the SODIAL(R) 2014 CK-100 Auto Key Programmer, Amazon neatly bundles the item with a blank key fob for Honda Accords (for 2003-2007 models only) for the low price of $120.67 — shipping is free with Amazon Prime.
Of course, one could argue that if an individual is desperate enough, he can simply break a window and gain access to a car — no one would expect Amazon to stop selling baseball bats or crowbars.
Yet for a company so devoted to not offending anyones sensibilities, it seems rather odd for it to have dozens of pages of tools for would-be criminals.
As The Atlantics Conor Friedersdorf wrote in 2016, San Francisco saw more than 258,999 car break-ins in 2015 — a stunning 77 percent increase from 2010. That number went up to more than 30,000 in 2017.
If Amazon wont sell gun-shaped phone cases because some Democratic politicians refer to them as “ticking time bombs,” one would think theyd stop potentially abetting actual crimes.
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