Box clever to beat the car thieves
Stay one step ahead of the game in the war on quick-change tech-savvy criminals, writes Florence Snead
In the battle between car thieves and motorists, the keyless car was supposed to be the secret weapon that finally defeated sophisticated felons who can whisk stolen cars across the world. But underestimate your enemy at your peril.
Rather than being the last word in security, the technology is increasingly open to hacking by thieves. Insurers have spent a third more on payouts for vehicle theft this year compared to 2017.
The idea behind a keyless car is simple enough. Instead of pressing a button on a key, drivers have a digital fob which can unlock their car and start its engine within a certain range.
The fob works by emitting radio signals that are picked up when it is in close proximity of the car, usually a couple of metres. Between 1 and 3 per cent of cars – roughly equivalent to between 350,000 and one million vehicles – in Britain use the technology.
“When you have a £30,000, £40,000 or £50,000 car as a potential target for them, they are very motivated to try to find ways of fooling the