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Old 7th July 2007, 13:49   #16
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Having said all these, Does it really work 100% per design? Can't anyone tamper with it at all?
There isnt an anti-theft system yet, thats tamper proof. I remember reading on a car that one high-end luxury car maker had prepared. Had each and every gizmo that one could think of (alarm, keyless entry, engine immobiliser etc.) but it yet got stolen.

The key is to dissuade the thief as much as possible.
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Old 8th July 2007, 21:26   #17
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It is not too difficult to clone these keys using a pc. A local locksmith to me (in UK) has all the gear to clone these so called smart keys. He charges the equivalent of 640RS to cut and program 1 key. Of cause you need the actual key or smartcode to program the chip but whats there to stop someone gathering data from these when you hand the key over at a petrol pump or service centre. As GTO puts it, there is no anti theft system which is not tamper proof.

Gear locks appear to be a sturdy visual deterant but a determined thief can remove it in less than 30 seconds. So all that marketing rubbish about laser cut keys made of kryptonite etc etc is just talk.
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Old 8th July 2007, 21:38   #18
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Let's wait for the first clever thief to do it. Please do not give any ideas guys.
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Old 8th July 2007, 21:53   #19
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Off the topic but how about these safety devices ?




Last edited by Tech : 8th July 2007 at 21:54.
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Old 9th July 2007, 11:36   #20
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No security system is tamper proof, even the gear locks can be overcome , but they take time to break.

BUT, statistics from the countries where immobilizers are implemented show that they do help in reducing car thefts and the numbers have gone down.
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Old 9th July 2007, 12:13   #21
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You do not need to have a tamper proof lock, all you need to have is that your car should be more difficult to break into than the car next to you.
This does not hold true if the thief is Nicholas Cage.
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Old 9th July 2007, 12:47   #22
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Originally Posted by dadu View Post
No security system is tamper proof, even the gear locks can be overcome , but they take time to break.

BUT, statistics from the countries where immobilizers are implemented show that they do help in reducing car thefts and the numbers have gone down.
Gear locks are very easy to overcome. Brute force alone is enough to break some models in less than 30 seconds.
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Old 9th July 2007, 15:38   #23
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If the time and effort required to break a security system is more than the perceived value of the secured item, then we can consider it to be decent enough security. But then, it keep reducing over a period of time due to advancements in technology and skills and finally breaks even. Thats when thieves can afford to break it. The same thing applies to any form of security including computer security and VVIP security.
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Old 9th July 2007, 15:52   #24
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key has a 'chip' thats what the manual says and doesnt mention RFID, again they do caution against strong magnetic fields, my guess it should be RFID itself.

coming back to the discussion in hand, yes this will go a very long way in stopping car thefts but breaking open and stealing of stuff inside can happen as usual.

atleast indian car thiefs dont come equipped with high tech readers and all, so hopefully word will soon spread that these cars are difficult and loose charm with the thieving community. then they will surely do some online purchase of equipment for stealing cars
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Old 16th September 2007, 10:41   #25
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Hi all!
Was wondering how effective this iCATS (intelligent car anti-theft system) thing is.
Maruti has been fitting it to all it's new cars as of around mid-April this year. Many other makers were fitting it to their higher end models only.
This is a factory fitted anti-theft system, whereby a 'chip' in the ignition-key fob carries a specific code and it must match the code in the ECU for the car to start. No other key will work, nor will 'hot-wiring'.
Please do not confuse this iCATS system with various other types of 'engine immobilizer' systems that are retro-fitted to cars.
My question is: Has anyone had an iCATS car stolen? Or has anyone heard of one being stolen? In other words, has this system been 'cracked' by our auto thieves here in India? To my mind it would require our car thieves to go fairly hi-tech to defeat this system.
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Old 16th September 2007, 12:19   #26
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Even I want to know this, it woud be good info to collect here, if anyone has/ or is aware of a car being stolen, which was company fitted with iCATS or Immobilizer device.

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Originally Posted by anupmathur View Post
My question is: Has anyone had an iCATS car stolen? Or has anyone heard of one being stolen? In other words, has this system been 'cracked' by our auto thieves here in India? To my mind it would require our car thieves to go fairly hi-tech to defeat this system.
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Old 16th September 2007, 13:06   #27
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Originally Posted by anupmathur View Post
Hi all!
Was wondering how effective this iCATS (intelligent car anti-theft system) thing is.
Maruti has been fitting it to all it's new cars as of around mid-April this year. Many other makers were fitting it to their higher end models only.
This is a factory fitted anti-theft system, whereby a 'chip' in the ignition-key fob carries a specific code and it must match the code in the ECU for the car to start. No other key will work, nor will 'hot-wiring'.
Please do not confuse this iCATS system with various other types of 'engine immobilizer' systems that are retro-fitted to cars.
My question is: Has anyone had an iCATS car stolen? Or has anyone heard of one being stolen? In other words, has this system been 'cracked' by our auto thieves here in India? To my mind it would require our car thieves to go fairly hi-tech to defeat this system.
Wow!! Wasn't aware that Maruti has been fitting it to all new cars. Although sometime back as you rightly said it was being offered only on high-end vehicles. AFAIK, Mercedes was the first one to offer it factory fitted. The system has already been cracked abroad though not very sure about India.

The ECU is programmed with a specific code; and the transponder on the ignition key digitally communicates with the ECU. Unless the code provided by the transponder matches the code programmed into the ECU, the ignition will not turn on.

To get around the system, a method called brute-force is opted. If someone is familiar with basics of computer-hacking, brute force is the surest though not the fastest way to get around a passcode. Suppose the passcode is 4 characters long... The brute-force program will try all 4-character combinations of numeric/alphanumeric constants and will ultimately find the correct passcode.

To make the passcode more resistant to brute-force attack, it is always advisable to use a combination of numeric and alphanumeric characters. Also, the more number of characters a passcode has, the more combinations the brute-force program will have to try-consequently becoming more time consuming.

So all you need is a device attached to the key transponder, which does not transmit a programmed constant value, rather transmits variable values to the ECU at a rapid pace, trying every combination possible. Once the code transmitted by the transponder matches the one programmed into the ECU, the ignition can be turned on.

All this sounds simple in theory, but is difficult to implement. One needs a huge amount of portable processing power at one's disposal, because the thief cannot sit around for hours, waiting for the code combination to match the one programmed into the ECU. It also depends on the complexity of the code (number of characters, character types) which has been programmed into the ECU.

In the end, no code exists which is unbreakable. Some just take longer than others to be deciphered.
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Old 16th September 2007, 13:48   #28
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What you say is right doomsday, but to the best of my knowledge Indian car thieves are a pathetically 'low-tech' bunch. They use 'foot-rules', 'credit-cards', 'master keys' etc.. to gain access. Sometimes they remove windscreens or just break window glasses.
Each one of them KNOWS how to defeat the standard (Autocops, Xenos, Nippon etc) retro-fitted 'immobilizers'.
Which is why I'm asking about the iCATs systems. These would require hi-tech 'hand-held' computing systems to defeat them. Even 'hot-wiring' experts would not be able to steal these cars.
It would help us all to know what the incidence of car theft has been with the cars that came 'factory-fitted' with iCATs.
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Old 16th September 2007, 14:11   #29
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Very well described but to achieve all this you need to be really computer savvy with the right tools and laptop, sitting around the car and trying to first lock into the frequency of the radio waves being used between the ECU and key, then you can use brute force to crack open the key but sometimes even brute force doesnt work.

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Originally Posted by doomsday View Post
.
The ECU is programmed with a specific code; and the transponder on the ignition key digitally communicates with the ECU. Unless the code provided by the transponder matches the code programmed into the ECU, the ignition will not turn on.

To get around the system, a method called brute-force is opted. If someone is familiar with basics of computer-hacking, brute force is the surest though not the fastest way to get around a passcode. Suppose the passcode is 4 characters long... The brute-force program will try all 4-character combinations of numeric/alphanumeric constants and will ultimately find the correct passcode.

EXACTLY

Quote:
Originally Posted by anupmathur View Post
What you say is right doomsday, but to the best of my knowledge Indian car thieves are a pathetically 'low-tech' bunch. They use 'foot-rules', 'credit-cards', 'master keys' etc.. to gain access. Sometimes they remove windscreens or just break window glasses.
Each one of them KNOWS how to defeat the standard (Autocops, Xenos, Nippon etc) retro-fitted 'immobilizers'.
Which is why I'm asking about the iCATs systems. These would require hi-tech 'hand-held' computing systems to defeat them. Even 'hot-wiring' experts would not be able to steal these cars.
It would help us all to know what the incidence of car theft has been with the cars that came 'factory-fitted' with iCATs.
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Old 16th September 2007, 14:32   #30
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Well, there is no such thing as a theft-proof system. But word on the street is that the ICATS is extremely effective as a theft-deterrent system. Considering that Marutis (most models) sell like hotcakes in the used car segment, this has been a most welcome move from Maruti.
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