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Vehicle Crime Prevention

Keyless car theft – what is it?


Cars with keyless entry unlock automatically when the key comes within a short distance of the car.


Keyless car theft, also known as 'relay theft', occurs when a device is used to fool the car into thinking the key is close by; this unlocks the car and allowed the ignition to be started.


Thieves only need to be within a few metres of your car key to capture the signal and can take just 20 to 30 seconds.


If you must push a button on your car key to access your car, you don't have keyless entry – but please still be aware and look out for your neighbours!


How to protect your car -


Ask your dealer

•            Is keyless entry standard or optional fit on your vehicle?

•            Can the wireless signals on your fob be turned off overnight?

•            Is a motion sensor fob available? This puts the key to sleep and deactivates it when it's not moving.


Keep car keys safe

•            When at home, keep your car key (and the spare) well away from the car and avoid leaving near your doors or windows.

•            Put the keys in a screened tin/box/bag to disrupt the communication range. Test to check that it works.


Use a signal-blocking pouch

•            The pouch, such as a Faraday bag, is inexpensive and lined with layers of metallic materials.


Use a steering wheel lock

•            A steering wheel lock is an effective mechanical device that thieves' technology can't unlock.


Re-programme your keys

•            If you buy a second-hand vehicle, you may not have been given all of the keys. To be sure, get the keys re-programmed so previous owners can't access the vehicle.

•            Contact an approved auto locksmith or your vehicle manufacturer.


Check if your vehicle has an immobiliser

•            Find out by looking in the handbook or ask a mechanic to check. Fitting a Thatcham-approved immobiliser will make it harder to steal and can lower your insurance premium.



•            If you park on a driveway, park as close to the property as you can.

•            If you have more than one vehicle on your driveway, park the less desirable vehicle in front of the more desirable one to block its access.


Driveway bollards

•            Fold down or removable driveway bollards are a simple and secure solution adding an extra layer of security.


Security cameras

•            A wide range of wired and wireless options are available to put you in control of your security.




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Message Sent By
Wendy Leason
(Cheshire Police, PCSO, Chester LPU Saughall and Mollington area)

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