DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — With Hyundai cars the top choice of thieves in nearly 1,200 car thefts this year in Durham, police are offering free wheel locks for owners of some models of Hyundai vehicles, officials said Monday.

Durham police said the spike in vehicle thefts is believed to be linked to the “Kia Boyz challenge,” which is a method of theft popularized on social media.

“During this theft, thieves steal Hyundai and Kia vehicles with the help of simple tools such as a screwdriver and a USB cable,” according to a news release from the Durham Police Department.

Until Aug. 12 of this year, there were 1,177 motor vehicle thefts reported in Durham, police said.

“Hyundais have been the most frequently stolen car in Durham this year, as 175 Hyundai vehicles were reported stolen during the first half of the year,” the news release said.

Hyundai Motor America has donated 120 steering wheel locks to the Durham Police Department that are now available for owners of 2011-2022 Hyundai vehicles.

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The free steering wheel locks can be picked up any time or day at Durham Police Headquarters at 602 East Main St.

To receive one, a person must be a Durham resident and will need to provide vehicle registration.