posted 6 years ago

High-Tech Gangs Steal Cars in Moments

Technology is enabling Eastern European gangs to steal new vehicles within moments.

Technology is enabling Eastern European gangs to steal new vehicles within moments. The Mirror, in fact, has reported that: BMWs, Audi Q7s, Range Rovers, Ford Transits, Mercedes-Benz Sprinters, and Ford Fiestas have been targeted because of their electronic keys or key-less entry systems. The scam is simple. The criminal buys a 'device'. He then waits in, say, a residential road for someone to park a suitable car. The owner of this vehicle then leaves after locking it via its wireless key fob. Or so he thinks. In fact, the crook's device has blocked the fob's signal so the car is unlocked. The criminal then enters and programs a blank key via the diagnostic socket. These have a legitimate use for replacing lost or damaged keys, etc. The criminal then simply drives away. Alternatively, a crook enters a car, installs a tracker, downloads key data from the diagnostic socket, then returns later with a cloned key. This is not as challenging as its sounds. The most prestigious cars are often moved to Russia, others are sold in parts, and vans find work in Poland/Lithuania.

Fortunately, motorists can take steps to minimise the risk. The objective is to make your vehicle harder to steal than the one parked adjacent. This encourages criminals to look elsewhere. So, first and foremost, check that your car is locked by pulling its handles. This sidesteps the crook's key fob blocker leaving him with no choice but to either leave or break-in. The latter is hard work, noisy, and time consuming. Secondly, fit a steering wheel lock or a similar immobilisation device. That brings us to parking. At home, leave it in a garage or block its escape route with something less valuable. An older car, perhaps. Also, while out and about try to park in well lit areas monitored by CCTV. Then cross your fingers.

Could Ant Man elucidate please. Also - Art Mather, I like!

In response to Dave Dibble with regards making the diagnostic port harder to get to, I think a simple locked metal box with a seperate key to lock/unlock it would be simple. This way the crooks would have a lot of 'noisy' work to do in order to break it open, therefore deterring the crook. This way it wouldnt affect the benefits of you having keyless entry/start (just make sure the doors are locked before you walk off). It also wouldnt be a problem for a dealer etc as they would have the key from you if they needed access to the diagnostic port.

BMW now have a fix for their models impacted.

I have keyless entry and keyless go but never lock the car with the remote I always use the button on the doors and tailgate, much safer.

stop east europeans from coming here!!

Use a steering wheel lock - So you get rid of a perfectly good conventional key (with immobiliser ideally) that locks the steering wheel to replace it with a wireless one that then needs to have a bulky steering wheel lock fitted. Vorsprung durch Stupidity!

In my days when driving my first car a Morris Minor, one simply removed the rotor arm in seconds. No amount of trying to start the car and drive off was ever successful.

I have got one of these cars with keyless entry. The idea of using a crooklock or similar defeats the whole idea of a modern keyless system, I guess we need to protect the diagnostic connector with some sort of lockable cover so they cannot plug in to use their clever box!

It's a pity that his flaw in the system was not detected by the clever people who invented it.