According to the 2003 Uniform Crime Report released by the Michigan State Police, auto thefts in Michigan are up nearly 8 percent.
The upturn comes during a period of 14 years of declining car theft.
State police say new high tech ways of financial fraud and identity theft help thieves steal cars.
It's a change from the days when car thefts included breaking into a car and "hot-wiring" the vehicle.
Now criminals use identity theft and forged documents to outright purchase the vehicle and then quickly turn around and sell it and pocket the fraudulently gained profits.
For more information on car thefts visit www.michigaa.gov/msp
To give authorities tips on car theft or if you have questions call 517-336-6642.