Police warn Falkirk motorists about 'relay' car thefts
As the number of vehicle thefts rise in the Forth Valley area police have issued security advice to car owners in an effort to thwart the criminals.
A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “Relay theft is when two thieves break into cars which have keyless entry systems – using equipment to capture signals emitted by certain keys which are used to start vehicles.
“One offender stands by the car with a transmitter, the other stands by the house with another, picking up the signal from the key which is usually kept near the front door.
"This is relayed to the other transmitter at the vehicle, causing it to think the key is in close proximity and open the vehicle. The thieves can then drive the vehicle away and replace the locks and entry devices.”
Thankfully there are a few simple measures people can take to prevent these tech savvy offenders from pinching their cars.
Police state it is important to make sure that your car key is as far from the front door of you house as possible so its signal cannot be picked up by someone standing nearby on the street outside.
People can also store their keys in a metal box – which might seem a bit excessive, but the metal can block the signal.
They can also invest in a Faraday pouch or container – a device which is lined with layers of metallic material and works in the same way as the metal box.
These Faraday pouches can be purchased online.