Thursday, November 8, 2018

HGV driver demonstrates his simple tip to stop your car being stolen by hackers

This video created by an HGV driver reveals how drivers can use empty drinks cans to protect their cars from being stolen. 
Adam Farmiloe's clever video shows motorists how they can block the signal from 'relay' devices which can be used to force entry to a keyless car. 
Putting his key in a Coke can, he tries to operate the Ford car but finds that the key is not detected through the aluminium foil. 
The simple technology functions as a 'Faraday cage' which means criminals cannot track the electromagnetic signals. 
The 43-year-old from Wolverhampton says in the video: 'It's just a very simple, easy solution. 
'It's the sort of thing you want to do as a very cheap option. Try it - if it works, it works. 
'People say wrap them in silver foil, normal alloy foil, but that's quite thin and these cans are made of the same stuff. 
'Put the key in, even when the lid's open, press start and no key detected. Hope it helps some people out and saves them £5 on a Faraday pouch to protect their expensive car.' 
When he presses the start button with no protection around the key, the vehicle picks up the signal and the ignition starts.
But when he puts the key in a can of Coke there is no response as no key has been detected. 
Mr Farmiloe then repeats the trick with cans of Fanta and Carlsberg and it works again though the top of the cans has been cut right off.  
Keyless technology is designed to increase convenience for motorists as it typically means they need just a small fob to unlock their cars, and can drive by pressing an ignition button.
However, criminals are exploiting this with devices such as relay boxes, available to buy cheaply on Amazon and eBay for as little as £260 ($344). 
The thieves can use equipment to capture signals emitted by certain keys which are used to start new vehicles. 
Thieves can then drive the vehicle away and quickly replace the locks and entry devices. 

What is a Faraday cage? 

Faraday cages shield their contents from static electric fields.
All Faraday cages take electrostatic charges, or even certain types of electromagnetic radiation, and distribute them around the exterior of the cage.
Electromagnetic radiation is all around us. It's in visible and ultraviolet light, in the microwaves that cook our food and even in the FM and AM radio waves that pump music through our radios. But sometimes, this radiation is undesirable and downright disruptive. That's where Faraday cages come in.
As a Faraday cage distributes that charge or radiation around the cage's exterior, it cancels out electric charges or radiation within the cage's interior.

How do thieves steal your car without the keys? The hi-tech 'relay' gadget that uses signals to unlock vehicles parked outside homes

What is relay theft? 
Relay theft occurs when two thieves work together to break into cars which have keyless entry systems.
The thieves can use equipment to capture signals emitted by certain keys which are used to start new vehicles.
One thief stands by the car with a transmitter, while the other stands by the house with another, which picks up the signal from the key which is usually kept near the front door on a table or hook.
This is then relayed to the other transmitter by the vehicle, causing it to think the key is in close proximity and prompting it to open. Thieves can then drive the vehicle away and quickly replace the locks and entry devices.
Technically, any vehicle with keyless entry could be vulnerable to relay theft. 
These included cars from BMW, Ford, Audi, Land Rover, Hyundai, Volkswagen and Mercedes cars.
How can you protect your vehicle against relay theft?
According to research by the Institute of the Motor Industry, over half of motorists are worried their car could be accessed and stolen by remote thieves.
Fifty per cent of people surveyed weren't aware that their car might be vulnerable to cyber attacks, and while drivers shouldn't become paranoid about the safety of their car it's always a good idea to take precautions.
This has long been a necessary precaution in order to avoid car theft, but it's important to make sure that your key is as far from the front door as possible so its signal can't be picked up.
As hacking devices get more sophisticated, they may be able to pick up signals from further away.
This may seem a bit excessive, but a metal box could be the best place to store your keys overnight as the metal could block the signal being detected.
Lorna Connelly, head of claims at Admiral, said: 'Unfortunately, we do see a claims from customers who have had their cars stolen due to relay theft and it's a problem that we would advise motorists with keyless cars to be aware of.
'Despite progresses in anti-theft technology, thieves are always coming up with new ways to make off with your vehicle.
'We are urging all of our customers to keep their keys a safe distance from the door and consider storing them in a metal box. While this may seem like an extreme solution, relay theft is an extreme practice.'

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