The Regina Police Service is asking people to take extra precautions to protect their vehicles from theft.

According to police, the number of reported auto thefts has increased by around 45 per cent over this time last year. Police say their investigation has shown criminals are opening and starting vehicles using altered keys.

Hondas are the typical target of these thefts, but police say people are also targeting Acuras, Nissans and Fords. A steering wheel locking device isn’t susceptible to these altered keys.

Police say all vehicles could be potential targets for thefts. Owners can take preventative measures, including using a steering wheel locking device, locking vehicle doors, parking in well-lit areas and removing valuables.

Police say any vehicle theft or suspicious activity should be reported.