In Malaysia, we often hear stories and news about carjacking where the assailant robs you of your vehicle at (usually) knifepoint. The pros would discreetly work their way into the car and drive away.
For UK car thieves, however, they are a little more tech-savvy. By using a relay device and special transmitters, they are able to relay the keyfob’s signal to unlock and start the car in vehicles with keyless entry/start feature.
What Car? UK has tested that an experienced thief using specialised tools can unlock, start and drive away a vehicle in 10 seconds. Even premium models like the Land Rover Discovery Sport could also be stolen in 30 seconds.
However, that is not to say every keyless entry equipped vehicle can be easily stolen. Manufacturers have installed preventive measures on their keyless systems. For example, Audi, BMW, Ford and Mercedes-Benz, have introduced motion detection technology inside their car keys – if the key is left untouched, it stops emitting a signal.
Other makers like Jaguar Land Rover has taken a different approach, introducing ultra-wide-band radio technology which transmits a wide range of signals from the key, meaning thieves can’t lock onto the signal and fool the vehicle.
Keyless entry and start has become an expected feature on all new cars and you can’t deny that it’s more of a convenience than an accessory. Carmakers are also aware of the security risks involved and are working towards making keyless entries as secure as a traditional key.