To collect this data, the NICB analyzed insurance claims for stolen tailgates from trucks nationwide. In 2012, it found 831 cases of the crime and 1,090 in 2013. Texas led the country in tailgate thefts with 752 claims in a two year period. California and Arizona were in second and third place with 334 and 207 claims, respectively.
NICB spokesperson Frank Scafidi told Autoblog that "it's hard to know with confidence" the reason for the rise in claims. He speculated that it could simply have been more awareness of the problem, which would mean more people filing insurance claims for it.
Black-market demand for tailgates is high right now, according to NICB, and thieves are making a lot of money off of the crime. Seasoned thieves can steal tailgates quickly and, in some cases, more than one at a time from malls or even car dealers.
The crime can be prevented by using hinge locks that keep the tailgate from opening when you're not around.