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Old 28th November 2017, 15:41   #1
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Default Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

Thieves Filmed Stealing A Mercedes With A Relay Box.

Quote:
Police have just released footage of a Mercedes-Benz C-Class being stolen in the British town of Solihull.
Quote:
CCTV footage of the crime shows the two thieves approaching the car with two relay boxes. This little device can receive the signals from a keyless remote through walls, doors, and windows. Once one of the thieves captures the signal, it is automatically passed through to a second box being held near the car, opening the vehicle’s doors.




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Old 29th November 2017, 16:48   #2
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Default Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

Hi Mods: Could not find appropriate thread on this, hence creating a new one.

Found this news on Relay crime quite amusing and hence thought of sharing in this forum.

Tech-savvy thieves were able to steal a pricey Mercedes in seconds - using a gadget to override the car’s security system.

http://www.bbc.com/news/av/uk-421328...ught-on-camera




So, what is Relay crime?

The latest type of vehicle theft doesn't require a key and can take less than a minute to carry out. Known as 'relay crime', thieves can hack into a car's security system using computerized unlocking technology

Criminals armed with relay gadgets can hack the security code from your car key remotely and then use the code to unlock your vehicle.

How are they doing it?

Even when you're not using it, your car key emits a signal.

The footage, released by Police, shows two men - both carrying relay box devices - pulling up outside the victim’s home.
In a relay theft, one criminal will use a device to pick up the signal and steal the car's security code. The thief will then relay it to his accomplice holding another transmitter near the vehicle. The signal will be sent to the vehicle causing it to unlock. In the CCTV, one of the men can be seen waving a box in front of the property. The device receives a signal from the key inside and transmits it to the second box next to the car. The car’s security system is tricked into thinking the key is present and the vehicle unlocks, with the pair then driving away.
The car has not been found till now.

How did they get hold of these relay devices?

Are they some jugaad equipment?

Really scary to see how easily thieves got away with the car.

According to the cops, solution is equally simple – Keep the keys in a metal box as the signals cannot pass through metal. I am sure thieves will come up with something more smarter

PS: I am a complete layman when it comes to technology and all the content have been taken from publications.

Source; BBC News, Examiner.co.uk

Last edited by Rehaan : 30th November 2017 at 12:39. Reason: Adding video link :)
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Old 29th November 2017, 17:18   #3
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Default Re: Relay Crime – Car gone in 60 Seconds

Here is another link covering the same story.

Article:
Quote:
two men with relay boxes approached the car parked outside in a driveway. The boxes are able to detect weak signals – in this case the signal from the Merc’s remote fob – and amplify them. With the signal dialed in, the thieves simply opened the car, started it up, and drove away. All total, it was 58 seconds from when the car thieves got out of their car to when the Benz was reversing out of the driveway.

Authorities warn that such high-tech crimes are on the rise. The signal booster is becoming more common in the world of auto theft as automakers shift away from traditional ignition systems to the keyless variety. The West Midlands police say that the best defense against hacker thieves is to install a tracking system into your car, or to simply use an old-school steering wheel lock.

In other words, the best defense to protect your keyless car against is to add a devise that requires a key
Shocking. The relay boxes amplify the signals which tricks the car's security system.
IMO its prudent to say that such a crime can be carried out in other cars with such keyfobs emitting a signal. Not sure what the usual range of kebfob signal is, but how about having a signal off switch in keyfob itself ?

Last edited by aaggoswami : 29th November 2017 at 17:19.
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Old 29th November 2017, 23:18   #4
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Default Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

Came across this article today.
Never thought that such a thing was possible.

source: Link
Quote:

The technology savvy thieves exploit the car's keyless technology to gain access to the car and drive it away all while the owner is sleeping inside the house. Dubbed a ‘relay crime’ by police, the theft works by using relay boxes to pick up and carry signals. In this case, each thief had a box; one was pressed up against the exterior wall of the house and the signal from the keyless car fob was detected, it was then relayed to the second box that was making contact with the car. The fob opened the car and allowed the ignition to start. The clever and swift robbery was captured by the car's owner's CCTV and published this week by the West Midlands Police Department in an attempt to educate owners of the risks of keyless technology.
Wondering how safe the new age keyless-entry cars are, after seeing the video in that article.
If they could steal a Mercedes within a minute, imagine the plight of other brands!

In the past, robbers had to spend atleast some amount of time and do some physical exertion to get access to the car by breaking open the door/glass using crow-bars or some other weapons, and then try their luck to get access to the car's ignition somehow.

With keyless entry, I think their job has also been made simple.
Keyless robbery- can we call it so?

I feel that rather than completely relying on the car's digital lock mechanism, some old school type physical locks like gear-lock or steering lock should also be used as an additional safety measure, atleast in those cars which are parked outside by the side of the roads, during night time.
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Old 30th November 2017, 08:44   #5
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Default Re: Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

That's quite a known style of car thieves in Europe. I recollect a similar robbery that happened in Germany in 2010, some 10 cars were stolen in this style from our locality. They even managed to stop GPS tracking. I guess the thieves were from poorer countries of Europe (Romania, Czech etc). the robbed cars were loaded in container trucks and transported across countries to places where law and order was not that effective.

I believe that most security systems, key, keyless, alarms, GPS tracking... are meant to stop Gentlemen. All that a thief need is a scale or a lever or this keyless signal recording device or in the worst case, just a Stone.

Last edited by Thermodynamics : 30th November 2017 at 08:58. Reason: Typo
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Old 30th November 2017, 11:01   #6
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Default Re: Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

That was quick & easy! And it's a modern Mercedes, not some old generation using outdated tech.

One easy fix would be for manufacturers to mandate that the smartkey remains in the car for the engine to keep running. It's currently not the case.

The police's recommendation of using a steering lock is classic! Folks, we're back to the 80s & 90s .
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Old 30th November 2017, 13:35   #7
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Default

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
That was quick & easy! And it's a modern Mercedes, not some old generation using outdated tech.

One easy fix would be for manufacturers to mandate that the smartkey remains in the car for the engine to keep running. It's currently not the case.

The police's recommendation of using a steering lock is classic! Folks, we're back to the 80s & 90s .

Shouldn't this lead to a recall for a software update ? Hope the manufacturers treat this seriously.

I am actually surprised that Mercedes hasn't made an official statement on this.

I have one of the old steering locks, which I used on my Esteem. Guess what my C250 is going to have a new accessory.
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Old 30th November 2017, 13:59   #8
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Default Re: Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
That was quick & easy! And it's a modern Mercedes, not some old generation using outdated tech.

One easy fix would be for manufacturers to mandate that the smartkey remains in the car for the engine to keep running. It's currently not the case.

The police's recommendation of using a steering lock is classic! Folks, we're back to the 80s & 90s .
GTO, unless I am mistaken, this bypasses EVERY current anti-theft mechanism in these 'press to start' cars. Has any manufacturer evolved with a hybrid system which can stop this?

Way forward is to program curfew times into a Tracker or LoJack system. But smart thieves have already managed to outwit them too at least in the UK.
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Old 30th November 2017, 14:23   #9
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Default Re: Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

I think the main reason is the always on communication between the key fob and the vehicle. They are always trying to communicate and distance is the only thing that stops the vehicle from responding.

All these guys are doing is amplifying the signal and bridging the gap. Smart and simple way. So a switch to turn off the remote could be a simple solution. You can make it advanced by providing fingerprint enabled and as well integrate it with your phone.

In the video, we can see him doing it the second time to start the car ? After a timeout perhaps that disabled the engine start ?

Last edited by srishiva : 30th November 2017 at 14:26.
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Old 30th November 2017, 14:25   #10
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Default Re: Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
The police's recommendation of using a steering lock is classic! Folks, we're back to the 80s & 90s .


Many decades ago these locks were made and sold in India. I was in Kao Hsiung, Taiwan at the time and the lock mechanisms were exported to India from Taiwan.
https://www.taiwantrade.com/product/car-lock-61501.html

Then the market moved to electronic-remote locking systems and these systems disappeared.

Quote:
Originally Posted by srishiva View Post
I think the main reason is the always on communication between the key fob and the vehicle..
A simple solution is to keep your key in a metal bowl or box in the house. This will block any RF communication between the key and the car but also prevent any RF reader from reading the Key code.

Last edited by navin : 30th November 2017 at 14:28.
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Old 30th November 2017, 14:35   #11
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Default Re: Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

here you go, post #45 on this thread:

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/techni...y-steal-3.html
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Old 30th November 2017, 18:12   #12
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Default Re: Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box


I don't know why automobile industry is taking so much time to introduce security features used by smartphones in the vehicles. I think soon we will se automobile industry using security protocols used by smartphones. Smart cars are already here and probably soon we will see features like fingerprint sensor, face ID, IRIS unlock etc. to unlock and enable a car (imagine a built in camera in the instrument panel which will scan your face before enabling the car at all) Maybe soon people will be able to connect their mobile phones to their cars directly and will be able to literally talk to their cars, enable or disable functions/features, track live location, get live video feed of both inside and outside of the car, run diagnostics and much more just through their phones (imagine OBD2 built in and linked to your mobile phone), you can lend your car to your friend by sharing his security details with your car for a limited time as needed. All it takes is a device like smartphone built in in your car connected to you through your smartphone and it sounds like a easy incorporation of two platforms
EVs will further limit the use of physical keys as they already need electric current to start with, unlike ICE engine. So 'what to do when battery is down?' questions will no longer be asked. Physical keys will become obsolete in future.
I am not sure but I think apple's IMEI ID lock is still bust proof, imagine such an ID chip embedded in your car's system, it would be theft proof. Moreover EVs won't have a lot of parts that can be scavenged. And beyond EVs are autonomous EVs which hopefully will be even harder to steal.
So when the cars will become moving computers on wheels with encrypted security and what not, one would not just steal a car, one would Hack a car, but they will always get stolen for parts, purse or pleasure no matter the amount of security measures used.

There is nothing better than a well built garage with a couple of dobermans guarding it to keep your cars safe, period. No rat/pest infestation, no cats and no thefts.

Last edited by wrongturn : 30th November 2017 at 18:18.
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Old 30th November 2017, 18:26   #13
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Default Re: Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

Times are changing, we may probably get back to this humble old guy and hil tall girlfriend for the protection, no relay can open it - only a solid hammer needed and that will make noise on usage!!


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Old 30th November 2017, 21:06   #14
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Default Re: Thieves steal Mercedes in under a minute using Relay Box

Quote:
Originally Posted by wrongturn View Post

Maybe soon people will be able to connect their mobile phones to their cars directly and will be able to literally talk to their cars, enable or disable functions/features, track live location, get live video feed of both inside and outside of the car, run diagnostics and much more just through their phones (imagine OBD2 built in and linked to your mobile phone), you can lend your car to your friend by sharing his security details with your car for a limited time as needed. All it takes is a device like smartphone built in in your car connected to you through your smartphone and it sounds like a easy incorporation of two platforms
That is what Mercedes Connect Me does! Read more here,
https://www.mercedes-benz.com/en/mer.../connectivity/
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