Police advice re keyless car theft

Our Police Safer Neighbourhood Team for Upminster Ward have issued the following advice with regard to keyless car thefts –

Does my car have keyless entry?

A keyless entry car is one that can be opened by simply walking towards the car and the fob will emit a short range radio signal and unlock the doors. Once you are inside the car you can press the start button to engage the ignition.

Keyless car theft

It usually requires two thieves. One person stands near the car with the transmitter, the other will walk around the perimeter of the house with the amplifier in search of the key fob signal. If the key is close enough, the amplifier will pick up the signal and transfer it to the transmitter, which will then act as the key, tricking the car into unlocking the doors. The whole process can be done in less than 60 seconds and be done in relative silence.

Ways to keep your keyless car safe

Invest in a faraday bag or signal blocker pouch or you can use a tin or aluminium container. Always check the car is not picking up the signal by taking the pouch, bag or tin out to the car to see if you can still get into your car. 

You may be able to disable your keyless entry system, as some wireless signals from key fobs can be turned off. If you don’t want it turned off permanently, you may just want to turn it off during the night. The owner’s manual should provide details of how to disable your car’s keyless entry system if it possible. Alternatively, you can contact the manufacturer for more information.

If you park your car on the driveway outside the front of your house don’t leave your key fob near the front door or front windows. Leave the key the furthest away from the car so that the signal from the fob won’t work, however it is best not to rely just on this method but use extra security mentioned above.

Alternative methods

  • Park your car away from the house. The signal from your key fob is only strong enough to reach a couple of meters, so if your car is parked further away from the keys the signal shouldn’t get picked up.
  • Invest in a steering wheel lock which acts a visible deterrent and provides extra security.
  • Consider investing in driveway security posts to make it difficult to actually drive away in your car.
  • Fit a tracker to help find your vehicle if it is stolen. Some have this built into them by the manufacturer or you can have one installed independently.

For further advice on preventing vehicle theft and many other crimes visit met.police.uk/cp/crime-prevention/  .



Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.