DES PLAINES, Ill. — The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to preventing, detecting and defeating insurance fraud and vehicle theft, has introduced a program that supports vehicle finance companies in locating stolen, illegally exported, abandoned and impounded vehicles.

Through the program, vehicle finance companies can receive real-time notices of recovered stolen and impounded vehicles, and those exported or located in foreign countries. This notification process is a result of the NICB's data-sharing agreement with the Federal Bureau of Investigation's National Crime Information Center in which the NICB maintains a "mirror image" of the FBI's vehicle theft database. Using internal data analytics and investigative capabilities, the NICB can determine when and where a vehicle has been recovered or impounded and provide finance companies with real-time notification.

"Finance companies pay the price every time one of their financed vehicles is stolen, illegally exported, or left unidentified or abandoned in a law enforcement impound lot," says Robert Wilson, the NICB membership director who heads this new initiative. "With nearly 100 years of experience in locating and recovering stolen vehicles, along with our longstanding exclusive relationships with law enforcement agencies worldwide, the NICB provides finance companies with unique solutions to help them put their money back where it belongs...their bottom line."

Program Features

The NICB vehicle finance industry program currently features three primary components:

1. Impound Services — Through data-sharing agreements, the NICB gathers impounded vehicle information from law enforcement agencies and cross-references it with finance company vehicle data. Notifications of matching records are immediately sent to participating companies.

2. Interdiction Services — To help stop the flow of stolen U.S. vehicles sold on the black market worldwide, specially trained NICB agents, vehicle identification specialists and investigative staff work with U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents at key seaports and border crossings nationwide to review export records and match them against files from multiple databases that contain salvage, rental fleet, previous export, insurer theft data, purged FBI records and lien/finance vehicle records. Identified stolen vehicles are interdicted prior to exportation and notifications are provided to finance companies so they can recover their assets.

3. Repatriation Services — The NICB locates, identifies and returns stolen and impounded vehicles from foreign countries, most notably Mexico. Dedicated NICB agents and staff gather information about these vehicles and cross-reference it against theft data to uncover matches. Finance companies receive notification of the identification and provided the opportunity to have their vehicles returned to the United States.

"This program offers vehicle finance companies significant benefits. Through it, they can capitalize on the NICB's expertise and exclusive data-sharing agreements to support the prompt and accurate location and recovery of their vehicle assets, and reduce financial exposure to impound lot vehicle depreciation and vandalism," says Wilson.

Vehicle finance companies can obtain further information about this program by contacting the NICB's Member Services Group at 1.800.447.6282 x. 7001.