Thieves have discovered an easy way to get into vehicles — car remote jammers. These are cheap electronic devices which block the signal between your car remote and your car.
Many people click their car remote to lock their vehicle and then fail to verify that their vehicle actually locked. The thieves know this and they wait for vehicle owners to leave their cars and jam the signal so that the cars do not successfully lock.
The thieves may not be intending to steal the vehicles, but may only be interested in stealing the contents of the vehicles. This can be most profitable around Christmas time, but many cars contain small and expensive electronic devices such as radar detectors which can be stolen from an unlocked car in mere seconds.
More worrying is the realization that a bad guy could also use this technique to put something into your vehicle, such as planted evidence or an IED.
Bad guys can also use these jammers to prevent you from remotely unlocking your vehicle. This can be used to delay your entry into your car — extending the time you are at risk of robbery, kidnapping, or murder. These jammers also block most garage door and electric gate remote controls.
These jammers must work on the same frequencies as car remotes: 433Mhz, 315Mhz, and 868Mhz. They can have a range as large as a 100 meter radius.
Defense Against Car Remote Jammers
There is no real defense against these jammers. They are simple devices which transmit electronic noise “loudly” enough to prevent a legitimate signal from being received.
All you can do is:
- Park your vehicle in a secure area
- Verify that your vehicle is locked each time you leave it
- If your vehicle does not respond when you return, be on the lookout for a potential ambush
The good news is that these simple devices cannot be used to unlock your vehicle. They can only prevent your car remote from functioning.