Laser beams in on security

Killingholme, UK - Since 1994, about 200,000 Kia cars have been protected against theft by Retainagroup security marking and registration on the International Security Register (ISR). Now, the overt marking of six windows per car has become much faster with the use of patented, state-of-the-art laser technology.

“Kia has always recognized that overtly marking glass with our unique code and 24-hour telephone number, with vehicle and owner details recorded on the ISR, is a major deterrent to vehicle theft,” explained Retainagroup Managing Director, Wendy Rowe. “But instead of using stencils and special marking fluid, Kia is now using our in-house developed laser system, which reduces the etching time to just 40 milliseconds per mark. It’s very easy to use as well as being totally safe.”

Security marking and ISR registration of all Kias, including the latest Picanto and recently launched cee’d models, is done here, at the company’s import center. Last year, more than 35,800 Kias were registered in the UK, with the cee’d now being built in Slovakia. Glass marking and ISR registration is provided by Kia at no additional cost to customers.

Each discreet mark comprises the Kia logo as well as a code unique to the vehicle and the ISR’s 24/7 telephone number. Marking and registration is a proven theft deterrent and the unique code is a powerful tool in helping to detect the growing problem of vehicle cloning.

Being in possession of a marked and registered vehicle poses a very real risk to a thief. A telephone call by the police, a dealer, or a member of the public can quickly and easily determine whether there is police interest in the vehicle or if its details do not match those recorded on the ISR. Retainagroup statistics prove that vehicles protected by the system are more than 50 percent less likely to be stolen.

Hamish McCowan, Kia after sales and operations director, said: “It has always been vital to Kia in the UK that our customers’ investment in their car and enjoyment of their car are top priorities. The new laser etching and data capture system gives us and our customers peace of mind while also speeding up the entire marking and registration process. Rowe added: “Kia appreciates that vehicle crime hasn’t gone away; it has simply changed in ways that alarms and immobilizers alone are not designed to combat.”

Kia is one of 14 UK manufacturers providing Retainagroup marking and ISR registration as standard and joins Toyota, Lexus, and Skoda in using the laser marking system. For additional details contact the company at

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