The Maryland Vehicle Theft Prevention Council is urging motorists who own certain makes and models of Hyundai and Kia cars to reach out to the automakers for a free security software update following a nationwide surge in thefts that led to at least 14 crashes and eight fatalities. The theft deterrent software is designed for millions of Hyundai and Kia vehicles that lack an immobilizer. The upgrade is available free of charge to vehicle owners. As part of the software update, the theft alarm software logic will extend the length of the alarm sound from 30 seconds to one minute and now requires the key to be in the ignition switch to turn the vehicle on. The software upgrades were announced following a viral TikTok social media challenge which showed viewers how to hotwire the vehicles. About 3.8 million Hyundais and 4.5 million Kias are eligible for the update, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). To see if your vehicle is eligible for the free updates, contact Hyundai at 1-800-633-5151 or Kia at 1-800-333-4542. Hyundai, which launched its service campaign last month, is first offering a software upgrade to car owners with the following vehicle models: 2017 […]
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