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Gloucestershire Business News

Police warn keyless car owners to protect their vehicles from theft

Police are warning keyless car owners to be vigilant after the county has seen numerous reported thefts over recent months.

There have been seven thefts between 6 June and 20 August, with three vehicles stolen from Cheltenham, three from Gloucester and one from Cirencester.

All the keyless cars, cars that start by pressing a button, were stolen from driveways or residential roads despite them being locked and secure.

Offenders can use digital equipment to find and relay the signal given out by the car key fob to someone stood by the vehicle with a receiver, allowing them to unlock and start the vehicle the need of a key.

They can be stolen in this manner in as little as 20 to 30 seconds, making them attractive to thieves due to a quick getaway.

Vehicles with four doors and a large boot are also a target as they will sell for higher prices.

You can help protect your car from theft by following these measures:

• Store your key fob, and any spares, inside a car key signal blocker pouch such as a faraday pouch or box.

• Store your car keys away from the front door and away from the house.

• Consider using more traditional crime prevention methods such as a steering wheel lock or clamp, use of CCTV and security lighting.

• Some keys can have the wireless signal turned off - look inside your owner's manual or contact the manufacturer.

• Park defensively by going near to a wall or by using another car to block it in, or park in the garage if you have one.

• You can have your car fitted with a tracker or if you're buying a new car ask the showroom about the cost of activating the inbuilt manufacturer's system.

If you have to push a button on your keys to enter your car, your car is not at risk from this kind of theft but it is important to make sure your vehicle is secure all the same.

Find more ways to protect your vehicle on the Constabulary's website here: https://gloucepi.mpw.cds.co.uk/cp/crime-prevention/theft-of-a-vehicle/vehicle-attracting-thieves/ 

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