Keyless Car Theft

Keyless Car Theft

What is keyless theft?

The process criminals use to steal a car via keyless theft is relatively simple. First, they buy a relay amplifier and a relay transmitter. Next, they identify a house and by using these gadgets they can detect whether the car features keyless entry. One criminal then stands by the car with his transmitter, while a second waves his amplifier around the perimeter of the house. If the car key is close enough the amplifier will detect its signal, amplify it and send it to the accomplice’s transmitter.

This transmitter then effectively becomes the key and tricks the car into thinking the real key is nearby, so the thieves are able to open the car, get in and drive away. The whole process can take as little as 60 seconds and can be completed in near silence and as for safety reasons the engine won’t just cut out when the key is out of range, there is very little to stop the thieves.

How to avoid keyless theft – With growing numbers of cars being stolen via keyless theft, we look at the steps you can take to keep your car safe.

Top tips

Dont forget the basics – ensure your car is properly locked and keep keys far away from doors and windows. This will minimise the chances of a criminal being able to find and amplify the key’s signal and is general good practice, as it’ll prevent thieves from easily breaking in and swiping them. Owners could store their car keys in a metal tin to block signals.

Physical barriers – devices such as a steering wheel locks, a driveway parking post, or even a wheel clamp can prevent your car from being driven away, even if the thieves are able to access and start your car. Many criminals will consider bypassing these as they will be considered too much hassle.

Carmakers are working on countermeasures to combat the issue of keyless theft, with new frequency technologies, software and keys among the developments taking place.