DRIVERS have been urged to keep their keyless fobs as far away as possible from the cars when parked after a spate of thefts.
Thames Valley Police put out the warning after a string of thefts across Berkshire where keyless cars have been stolen.
One incident involved a keyless vehicle being stolen from outside a house in New Road, Ascot.
It happened between Tuesday, September 14, at 9pm to Wednesday, September 15, at 7am.
The officer reports the Dark Grey Range Rover Velare was stolen without the key fob in site.
The registration of the vehicle is RE**TWC and it has full GPS tracking, although the warning says it seems to have ‘disappeared’.
Adding: “These cars have full GPS tracking. It is almost impossible to de-activate it. More likely, it has been driven into the back of the lorry or a container, which prevents the GPS signal from escaping. These cars are stolen to order.”
Anyone with information on this is asked to contact police on 101 reference 43210415197
Another local report of a similar theft involved a Black Jaguar Pacer R Sport being stolen from the same road on Wednesday, September 15, at 2am.
The sports car was outside the house and video doorbell footage captured the theft.
Police described the video showing a car being driven slowly past the road a few times, before a couple of people appear to get out. One was filmed getting into the back of the car and the other in the front before driving off.
The warning said: “Again a relay device must have been used to boost the signal from the key fob inside the house.” (Reference 43210415234)
Police described how criminals use a ‘relay’ device to boost signal from a key fob that is inside a house, to fool the car into thinking it is nearer and as such is able to open and start up ‘in a matter of seconds’.
Elsewhere another vehicle was targeted on Sunday, September 12, at midnight, from outside a house in Horton Road, Datchet.
Thames Valley Police said the keyless fob entry Land Rover Range Rover was tracked by the Land Rover tracking department who alerted the owner that is was being driven without a fob inside the car, and believed it may have been stolen using a ‘relay’ device.
Tracking signal dropped out momentarily but the firm was able to pick up tracking again and the car was recovered by the Met Police (reference 43210411276).
The following day, on September 13, another keyless white Jaguar E-Pace was stolen. It happened about 7.50am in Montagu Road, Datchet. Police have no more details at this time.
Police warned: “Range Rover and Jaguar seem to be the cars stolen most frequently at the moment.”
Adding: “Car thieves use the ‘Relay’ device, to boost the signal from inside the house, fooling the car to open and start in a matter of seconds.
“Keyless fobs, MUST be kept as far as possible from the pavement/public access to the home. Keep them in a ‘Faraday’ Cage – or if you don’t have one – the fridge!”