Keyless Car Access

Here’s one that should interest those of you with who have vehicles that don’t need a key to unlock the door:

Many new cars just require that you have the key on your person and the door automatically unlocks when you approach it. Likewise–the ignition does not have an ignition key. You just have to have the key with you. So what’s the problem? Seems like there are a number of reported incidents where unknown persons have obtained access to locked cars of the type mentioned. There is no evidence of forced entry and it has puzzled many a law enforcement organization. Now we know what is happening.

The newer cars are always wirelessly scanning for the proper key. When you approach it with the proper key, the car unlocks itself and can be started. (The distance may be 50′ or so). The bad guys have a power amplifier that they carry with them and turn it on as they approach the car. It extends the distance that the car can search for the proper key. So–if you need to be within 50′ then the amplifier allows the distance to be increased to maybe 100′. If you key is in the house on the kitchen counter, the car can most likely find it easier and unlock the door. Note that the distances used in this example are guesstimates and are used only to give you an idea of how it works.

So what do you do? According to a writer with the New York Times, just put your keys in the refrigerator at when you are not driving your car. Why? The ‘fridge acts as a Faraday Cage (well, not a perfect one, but close enough) which will not allow the wireless signal to get in or out.