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View Full Version : Don't be a victim of 'Car Jamming'



Rudolph Muller
01-29-2012, 12:14 PM
The incidence of criminals using electronic devices to jam the remote locking systems on cars is on the increase. But how do you avoid becoming a victim? We spoke to Willem Smith, CE of Old Mutual iWYZE valuables insurance to find out.


According to Smith, ‘Car jamming involves blocking a car’s remote using a standard household remote that operates on the same frequency. This prevents the locking action of the car from being activated and leads motorists to believe their cars are locked when they are not.’


‘Although the criminals need to be close to the vehicle being targeted for it to be effective, they rely on motorists being distracted when they lock their cars and failing to notice the beep or the lights flashing to confirm that it has locked,’ says Smith.


‘The driver then walks away leaving the thief free to move in and steal any shopping or expensive items the motorist believes are locked safely inside the car or in the boot.’


What about insurance?


While you may believe you can claim from your insurer under these circumstances, the reality is that unless there are signs of forced or violent entry, most insurance policies won't pay claims for the theft of valuables from your vehicle.


‘The reason for this is that there is no real way of proving that you didn’t accidentally leave your car unlocked, leaving it a target for thieves,’ says Smith.


‘However, as a result of the frequency of this occurrence, iWYZE has decided that we will cover our clients, depending on the merits of, and procedures followed, in each case.’


These include:



The crime must be reported to the police and a case number obtained.
The policyholder must be able to prove that the items stolen belonged to them.
The value of the items must be specified.
The policyholder must be able to prove that there was no negligence on their part.

In order to prevent car jamming from happening to you, iWYZE recommends the following:



Don’t walk away from your car before you engage the remote locking.
Make sure you hear the beep of your alarm system and / or the audible sound of the locking mechanism.
Physically check that your doors and boot are locked – and then check again!
Always keep your valuables in your boot and out of sight.

‘Car jamming is being executed by professional gangs and motorists should remain vigilant to prevent falling prey to this type of criminal. By being especially alert in areas like shopping centres, public car parks and even outside your children’s school, you can avoid potentially expensive losses.’ Smith concludes.

MickeyD
01-29-2012, 12:42 PM
When the initial reports of this practice surfaced, it was laughed off as an urban myth.

Suppose they are laughing on the other side of their faces now....

mercurial
01-29-2012, 12:47 PM
I recently saw this in an article as well. These skelms will do anything!

Dragon_Void
01-29-2012, 01:51 PM
I saw this on the news. One question though, what type of person just locks their car with a remote, and walks away without looking if it locked?

mercurial
01-29-2012, 01:59 PM
I saw this on the news. One question though, what type of person just locks their car with a remote, and walks away without looking if it locked?

Someone who is pre-occupied and just assumes it is locked. It can easily happen. Mistaken happen. Plus, they try to distract you so that you don't notice.

McT
01-30-2012, 08:43 PM
When the initial reports of this practice surfaced, it was laughed off as an urban myth.

At some of the police stations in the northern suburbs of JHB, they are receiving up to 10 reports a day.

McT
01-30-2012, 08:46 PM
I saw this on the news. One question though, what type of person just locks their car with a remote, and walks away without looking if it locked?


Someone who is pre-occupied and just assumes it is locked. It can easily happen. Mistaken happen. Plus, they try to distract you so that you don't notice.

Yeah, that used to be me too. I would just press the button and listen for the beep or central locking. But the trap there is to walk away being distracted and forget to lock the car.

I am now in a habit of physically check doors before I walk away. I have almost become phobic :o

mercurial
01-30-2012, 09:23 PM
Yeah, that used to be me too. I would just press the button and listen for the beep or central locking. But the trap there is to walk away being distracted and forget to lock the car.

I am now in a habit of physically check doors before I walk away. I have almost become phobic :o

In this day and age, one has to be that way :)

McT
01-31-2012, 07:52 AM
In this day and age, one has to be that way :)

If we all adopted this attitude, then this sort of crime will be squashed.

Chaos247
01-31-2012, 10:54 AM
I think people need to start taking the Pavlov's dog approach.

mercurial
01-31-2012, 11:54 AM
If we all adopted this attitude, then this sort of crime will be squashed.

Indeed, but we can only hope...

McT
01-31-2012, 12:02 PM
I think people need to start taking the Pavlov's dog approach.

...which is? :confused: :o

ptashark
02-07-2012, 10:10 AM
I've tried this on my own car and it works brilliantly. As long as you check that the doors lock and alarm go on, it'll be fine. I couldn't believe that it actually worked, it boggles the mind.

TheMightyP
02-07-2012, 11:13 AM
This happened to a friend of mine in PE. They lost an ipad and a gps. I always check carefully before leaving my car now.

McT
02-07-2012, 01:33 PM
This happened to a friend of mine in PE. They lost an ipad and a gps. I always check carefully before leaving my car now.

Best way to ensure not hit by scam. If the miscreants break in, then it is forcible and violent entry and should be covered by insurance.

ajules
02-07-2012, 04:20 PM
Glad I read this - often activate the alarm when I am already 20 meters from the car.

TonyA
02-07-2012, 11:17 PM
Do all car remotes operate on the same frequency? If not how do thieves determine which remote to use?

mercurial
02-08-2012, 03:26 PM
Do all car remotes operate on the same frequency? If not how do thieves determine which remote to use?

I have no idea but I'm also keen to find out.

TonyA
02-08-2012, 05:51 PM
Does anyone know the frequencies that these remotes use? I tried blocking with my garage remote as well as the gate remote and I couldn't block the car remote!

McT
02-08-2012, 07:21 PM
Does anyone know the frequencies that these remotes use? I tried blocking with my garage remote as well as the gate remote and I couldn't block the car remote!

Then you're fortunate. Not sure what frequencies are used. Would still not leave it too chance and always check the car is locked before walking off.

In a article a couple of weeks ago, there was mention in the Star/Motoring.co.za of devices these miscreants are using to block signals... stuff they can get off the internet which appear to be somewhat stronger than a normal remote. Where there is a will there is a way.

TonyA
02-09-2012, 12:18 PM
Still very cautious. Always check that car is in fact locking and that red light (interior alarm) is flashing. Still curious about what remotes thieves use though.

Space_Kriek
02-13-2012, 03:14 PM
They can try on my car, and ITS never gonna work. I dont have central locking. I have manual locking and there is no jammer for that

TonyA
02-14-2012, 12:04 PM
Found that on my car car disable sections eg the boot, so remote locks and unlocks rest of car except boot, use gear look to secure car so I thought, then realised that they just pull partition out between rear seat and boot, so still no real security for valuables.

McT
02-15-2012, 01:11 PM
They can try on my car, and ITS never gonna work. I dont have central locking. I have manual locking and there is no jammer for that

So you're in poll position, provided you remember to lock.

nanonyous
02-28-2012, 01:26 PM
You can get RF devices that will sweep a frequency range you determine on the device very rapidly with a high output power. Generally, these impede the ability for devices trying to operate on the same frequency band from working properly because of the noise generated. Think of it as trying to operate two different WiFi routers in the same room on the same frequency/channel but on different networks.

Not all cars use the same frequency ranges, but that doesn't mean wide-spectrum or multi-band 'jammers' couldn't be used. 'cellphone jammers' operate on a very similar principle to these, though those are usually directional to help with the intensity and, more importantly, to avoid the things becoming wholly illegal.


A friend of ours' Subaru fortunately uses a proximity system for its locking. If a jammer were to be used to 'blanket cover' his remote, the car would simply lock itself, because it wants to know that the remote is in range. If the remote were to lose power or 'break', even while in range, the car will simply lock itself.

In a way, this on its own is dangerous, too, seeing as a car can in some cases be your place of safety when coming back to your car. These very same jammers can be used to prevent one from unlocking your car, unless your car still has a key socket and you've not grown that used to using your remote that you can remember which key is used for the door...

tha-pendragon
02-28-2012, 06:40 PM
This is scary as hell!

stroebs
03-05-2012, 10:57 AM
I find myself feeling very careless after reading this. I often walk away without checking and sometimes even forget to lock my car completely. Let's hope this scared me enough (and others like me) to make sure our cars are locked.

McT
03-05-2012, 12:31 PM
I find myself feeling very careless after reading this. I often walk away without checking and sometimes even forget to lock my car completely. Let's hope this scared me enough (and others like me) to make sure our cars are locked.

It's all about changing our habits. It's been slow, but I almost 100% in the habit of checking.

waz7710
06-01-2012, 01:49 PM
where there's a way, there's a criminal lurking in the bushes! Just be vigilant

wallsend
06-01-2012, 03:26 PM
Good Read, I often, Manually check that my car is locked after pressing the remote.
It's a force of habit that I picked up when my central locking was faulty.