WARNING TO DRIVERS AFTER RISE IN THEFT OF KEYLESS START VEHICLES
Message from Hertfordshire Constabulary…
Whilst vehicle crime has fallen over the last year in the county, a number of thefts of high value vehicles that use keyless entry/start have occurred over the last year, Hertfordshire Constabulary is warning.
Many of these vehicles have been stolen without causing damage to the vehicles, or the thieves getting hold of the security fob. These thefts may have been carried out by either cloning the security fob or employing electronic jamming or hacking equipment.
Following some of these steps will help to protect your vehicle:
• Never hand vehicle keys over to a third party or leave the vehicle unattended at a valet parking, car wash or other parking places, where criminals can gain access to the vehicle and code a key electronically.
• Consider fitting an ‘OBD safe’ device, a secure lockable device that fits over the vehicle’s on board diagnostic port, in the vehicle cabin. This prevents criminals using software to code a key from the vehicle. Devices that are Thatcham approved can be obtained from www.tieronevehiclesolutions.com.
• If your vehicle has a keyless entry system ensure you place the vehicle tablet key in your home address, as far away from the vehicle as possible, ideally place the key in a metal box.
• Consider fitting a dual band tracking device that works on VHF/UHF and GPS, to ensure that one tracking system is still functioning if criminals use GPS blocking techniques to avoid detection. Devices approved by Thatcham and Secured by Design help to combat this type of vehicle theft, as vehicles equipped with a tracking device are often promptly recovered.
• Criminals can also employ remote/keyless entry jamming equipment so make sure your car is locked by trying the door before leaving it.
• Ensure that ‘home’ on your vehicle ‘Sat Nav’ is shown as the post code of your local police station and not your actual home address.
• If advertising your vehicle for sale on line, ensure that the registration number is not displayed when photographed to avoid cloning of its identity.
Inspector Paul Lawrence of the Crime Reduction Unit said: “Recently we have seen an increase in the number of newer vehicles that use keyless entry and start technology being stolen. Whilst we have managed to recover a number of these, thieves seem to be targeting these vehicles and managing to override the security system. Following the advice we are giving will help drivers to keep their vehicles secure.”
If you have any information on motor vehicle theft or theft from vehicles please contact the police non-emergency number 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or through the secure online form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.