Brexit may hit stolen bike re­cov­er­ies

MCN - - THIS WEEK -

Just as the mo­tor­cy­cle com­mu­nity is achiev­ing some good re­cov­ery re­sults af­ter the theft prob­lems of re­cent years, Dr Ken Ger­man, a mo­tor­cy­cle crime ex­pert and for­mer Head of Tech­nol­ogy at the Met, has warned that the abil­ity to track stolen ma­chines could be com­pro­mised by Brexit. Many car and mo­tor­cy­cle track­ing sys­tems make use of Galileo; Europe’s Global Nav­i­ga­tion Satel­lite Sys­tem (GNSS). When com­bined with GPS and GLONASS (the Rus­sian al­ter­na­tive to Amer­i­can GPS), the GNSS adds an ex­tra layer of ac­cu­racy and re­li­a­bil­ity.

If the UK leaves the EU with­out a deal in March this year, it’s pos­si­ble com­pa­nies in the UK will lose ac­cess to the Galileo sig­nal, re­duc­ing the ac­cu­racy of de­vices that ac­cept the sig­nal. In the case of ve­hi­cles with re­duced sig­nal strength, such as a bike in the back of a van or hid­den in a lock up, this could be the dif­fer­ence be­tween re­ceiv­ing a weak sig­nal or none at all.

“There are more con­tin­gency plans than you can shake a stick at be­ing pro­posed at this time to limit the ef­fect should a ‘no deal’ oc­cur,” says Ger­man. “No doubt the po­lice here and in Europe will find a way to carry on; they usu­ally do. We may, how­ever, have to ask the Prime Min­is­ter to em­ploy two more of­fi­cers rather than one.”

Track­ing bikes could be about to get much harder

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