What Does a Zip Tie on a Car Door Mean?

December 4, 2023

Apparently, finding a zip tie on your car door can be a serious warning from human traffickers. A viral post that was shared in October of last year and again in July of this year claimed that sex traffickers were marking cars by leaving zip ties on them, as well as on homes and mailboxes. It was said that the zip ties were black in color and would be tied to your door handle, as well as the side mirror and other parts of the vehicle. The implication was that you would be followed home to the point of being kidnapped for sex trafficking.

This story was a hoax, and there have been many similar ones in the past. While it's important to remain alert and mindful of your surroundings, it's also vital not to let fear or paranoia drive your decisions. It's also a good idea to do a once-a-day visual check of your vehicle. You never know what you might find!

Albuquerque father warns of disturbing trend

Several TikTok users have reported on social media that they've found zip ties on their car doors. It's alleged that human traffickers use the markers to identify people who are alone and easy targets. They're also used to mark houses and mailboxes in a particular neighborhood. The father in the video, which has been viewed over 26.2 million times, says that he wants his daughter to check her car every morning and night for any signs of such markers.


Traffic Dave is on a mission to help traffic engineers, transportation planners, and other transportation professionals improve our world.
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