Police issue warning about social media trend targeting Kia, Hyundai vehicles

Kia and Hyundai have issued anti-theft software upgrades to address the issue.

Matt Trapani

Oct 2, 2023, 9:59 PM

Updated 286 days ago

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The Newark Police Department is warning residents about a nationwide social media trend impacting New Jersey.
Police say that the so-called “Kia Challenge” involves thieves targeting Kia and Hyundai vehicles. Police say these vehicles lack push-button ignitions and immobilizing anti-theft devices.
“Thieves can simply break into the vehicle without setting off the alarm by breaking a rear window. Then, the steering column is peeled back and either a screwdriver or USB charging cable can be used to start the vehicle,” police wrote in a statement.
Kia and Hyundai have issued anti-theft software upgrades to address the issue. Owners are advised to visit the Kia and Hyundai websites to obtain free anti-theft software upgrades and steering wheel locks offered by the vehicle manufacturers.
The impacted vehicles include:
• 2011-2022 Accent
• 2011-2022 Elantra
• 2013-2017 Elantra GT
• 2013-2014 Elantra Coupe
• 2011-2012 Elantra Touring
• 2011-2014 Genesis Coupe
• 2018-2022 Kona
• 2020-2021 Palisade
• 2011-2012, 2019-2022 Santa Fe
• 2013-2018, 2019 Santa Fe; Santa Fe XL
• 2013-2018 Santa Fe Sport
• 2011-2019 Sonata
• 2011-2022 Tucson
• 2012-2017, 2019-2021 Veloster
• 2011-2022 Sportage
• 2011-2020 Optima
• 2011-2022 Sorento
• 2011-2021 Forte
• 2020-2022 Soul
• 2012-2021 Sedona
• 2021-2022 Seltos
• 2021-2022 K5


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