Having your car broken into is not fun. I remember having an old, beat up Volkswagen where the only good thing about it was the cheap stereo that linked to my phone and blasted sound through some busted ass speakers. Then some a-holes broke into my ride and took off with the stereo, forcing me to drive on the freeways with nothing but the sound of the engine getting closer to breaking down.
That was an old car, though. Manufacturers are now relying on booming technology to make their new cars impossible to break into without taking a crowbar to the windows. With keyless entry, the computer in a car makes it impossible to drive — or so we thought.
A troubling video out of England has revealed thieves are getting smarter, and not solely depending on hot-wiring your car to jack it from you. Now they’re using devices to fool your keyless car into thinking it’s you with your key fob, and driving off without the slightest hint of property damaged.
Local police released the video above of thieves using what are called “relay boxes” to trick a Mercedes Benz’s computer into believing the keyless remote is in the vehicle. Once the relay works, the car drives as if the owner is sitting behind the wheel.
These boxes send signals through walls. The first one, held by the crook standing near the house of the sleeping owner, picks up the signal from the key fob within the residence. That box then shoots the signal to the one held by the guy near the car. The signal then fools the door locks into opening, allowing these douchebags entry into the car. All they had to do was push the keyless start and you can say goodbye to the Benz.
This whole process took less time than it does to microwave a pizza, which we can only assume will serve as feel-good food when you find out your car’s gone. Police said the best way to combat this kind of thing is to use vehicle trackers, which is probably a worthwhile investment if you’re going to splurge on a Mercedes.