Following the viral Kia Challenge on TikTok, which challenges largely teens to steal automobiles from those brands and has led to a sharp rise in thefts, a class action lawsuit has been launched against Kia and Hyundai, according to a report in Techcrunch. People who claim their cars were stolen as a result of this viral Kia Challenge have filed a lawsuit.
Car owners and police agencies around the nation are on high alert after a hazardous challenge involving young kids to take specific cars off the street using a USB cord began to circulate on TikTok and other social media platforms.
Certain types and models of Kia and Hyundai cars from 2010 to 2021 that require mechanical keys rather than key fobs and push buttons to start the car are being targeted by thieves, reports TechCrunch.
According to the lawsuit, Kia and Hyundai previously looked into the efficacy of building with engine immobilisers and decided against it, "blatantly valuing profits over the safety and security of their customers".
It claimed that after a TikTok "Kia Challenge," which made public a method for stealing specific makes and models of Kia and Hyundai automobiles, the automakers didn't even try to warn customers of the possibility of theft.
"With the massive rise in publicity of the defect, it is unlikely that the thefts will stop without active intervention by Kia or Hyundai," reads the lawsuit. "An entire criminal ecosystem has materialized; exacerbated by thefts only further fueled by TikTok, videos, and memes promoting the criminal behavior."
According to a CNBC report, the videos of the cars stealing and driving on social media using the hashtag "Kia Boys" have more than 33 million views on TikTok.