Can thieves digitally hack their way into your keyless car? New cars with fobs that activate keyless entry have now become targets for thieves overseas. According to according to Australian media the issue has not yet reached Australian shores but it bears being mindful of.
It has been reported in the U.S. and Europe that thieves are using a radio-controlled device to unlock and steal cars. This is possible because the radio signal from the car’s fob can be activated remotely.
The device that amplifies the signal of the car’s keyless entry is a badly kept secret. Police departments and other official channels have been reluctant to name the device to deter would be criminals.
Cars with keyless entry systems communicate with the key fob via a limited broadcast range of 1 metre. The amplification device can increase the range of the signal of the car so that the key fob acknowledges it from inside your house, thereby admitting entry and ignition activation.
A possible solution for this problem is keeping your keys in the freezer, microwave or any other large metal impenetrable box. It doesn’t matter what it is, just have to be thick and rectangular. It was reported in the New York Times last month that this is the recommended solution for remote break-ins.
Automakers are perplexed by this issue and some of the higher end manufacturers have started designing keyless entry which recognises your finger prints or keyless fobs which combine multiple radio channels, instead of just one.
Convenience is good; unless things become so simple that security goes out the window. The answer to the common question, “Has anyone seen my keys?” used to be, “Have you checked the couch?”
It may very soon become, “Did you check the freezer?”