Issues of car theft protection, review and classification of anti-theft systems
Crimes related to the theft of cars, more than a decade are a serious problem for countries around the world. It is very difficult to calculate the total number of annual thefts, but there is an assumption that the total profit of the hijackers for the year of “work” is more than 21 billion dollars.
Only in the US, about 800,000 cars are stolen each year. It is 1 car every 30 seconds! According to statistics of NTSB (National Insurance Crime Bureau USA).
Over the past two decades, the reason for the theft has also changed. If earlier cars could be stolen for resale (with re-written VIN on the body), then with the development of automotive electronics it becomes not actual, as the VIN number of the car is registered in the electronic components of cars.
Nowadays a lot of stolen vehicles end up in road clashes. They could be sold for parts at the same auction Ebay.
With the development of automotive electronics, the development of vehicles for the theft of cars is also under way. For example, a Code Grabber to crack the alarm, and the vehicle Emergency start to start the vehicle without keys via diagnostic connector, and relays smart keys and radio tags, and much, much more.
You have purchased a car with a Keyless access system and the “Start-Stop” button – congratulations, your car is absolutely not protected from lightning-fast theft.
Immediately after the appearance of these systems on the market, (smart key system) criminals have developed a radio relay device: there are two suitcases with two-way communication, stuffed with electronics. When you need to get inside the car and start it, one attacker must be near to the owner, the other – with the car. Imagine Parking near the supermarket: the owner of the car with Keyless access goes out, closes it with a touch of finger and goes shopping. At this time, one of the hijackers is behind him, and the second stands near the driver’s door and after some time begins to pull the handle or press the button to unlock the locks. The machine immediately sends a signal to the key, and at this time the suitcase (number one) intercepts all the radio waves and frequencies that are in the area, and transmits them to the suitcase number two. The one next to the owner, sends absolutely all the signals, and one of these signals is the one from the car, gets on the key. In General, there is a constant exchange of radio waves, so the hijacker unlocks the car door. In the same way, the engine is started with the button — and the job is done. Even if the car is some kind of alarm, it could be turned off by a mark in the key and deactivated by these suitcases.
Absolutely similar situation when you sleep peacefully in your cottage, and the car is on the street. One criminal approaches the house , the second to the parked car-and all signals from car keys, radio-marks of the immobilizer will be transferred to the second thief who will open and will lead the car.
Fantastic? No-conventional technology
You could be surprised, but the theft of such a masterpiece of the German automotive industry as the Mercedes s-Class w222 takes criminals ONLY 15 SECONDS!
Subscribe to our channel and later we will post a video of the theft of this car, filmed by a video camera of Parking security.
Below we will talk about the different ways to protect your car from criminals.
So what is an car anti-theft system?
In other words, it is the protection of the vehicle, which provides a set of alarm, anti-theft security and protective equipment installed on vehicles to ensure protection against unauthorized entry of intruders. If you divide the anti-theft system on the principle of action, it is necessary to identify four main types:
- Electronic car alarm
- Electronic device (immobilizer «anti-theft» system)
- Mechanical devices (locks)
- The System of satellite tracking and GPS trackers
Car protection must be effective and meet the modern requirements of integrated security. It should also perform all the tasks assigned to it as efficiently and reliably as possible in a parked state, and in a car in motion. And now let’s talk about each type of anti-theft system.
Electronic car alarm
If you are going to buy an alarm, it is better to buy the latest model of famous brand produced in Europe, the United States or Russia. They usually update their product range at least once a year, responding to the latest technological trends. Unlike the cheap (up to$ 50-70) car alarms produced in China, these alarms are built on high-quality element base and you will not encounter unexpected failure when you yourself can not turn off the alarm to start the car. It is well if it happens near the house, and what about if a thousand kilometers away from home when you go on vacation? Remember-quality things are not very cheap!
In addition, you can install a stand-alone system. When an attacker tries to neutralize the alarm, the siren with Autonomous power will not be able to be turned off quickly. Modern alarms can not only report unauthorized entry, but also to start the car, warm it up.
The main disadvantage of car alarms is that they are elementary hacked by attackers using the so-called code grabber devices.
The principle of their operation is that these devices intercept the signal from your keychain at the moment when you close the car. And the attacker does not need to stand next to you. Remember the range of your FOB? Up to 1500 meters. At this distance you can intercept the signal and disable the alarm. At this distance your car could be opened for subsequent theft, or for theft of valuables from the car interior or trunk .
Immobilizer-a special electronic devices designed to protect the vehicle. These devices have undeniable advantages:
- Compact concealed installation
- Implementation in many of them of automatic control without much effort of the driver
- The effective logical or discontinuous multi-channel blocking.
In the event of a bursting, the ignition and starter circuit breaks. Due to the fact that discontinuous locks have a variety of multi-channel they are a powerful anti-theft device. The logical lock is a rather regular function of the car. It is performed in the same type and this is its drawback.
Modern immobilizers could be divided into groups by the type of electronic key and the nature of the control:
- Group 1-contact devices:
- with electrical contact (mechanical)
- with biometric contact
- Group 2 – non-contact devices:
- radio Controlled
- Group 3-special devices
After analyzing the statistics and methods of theft of modern cars, our company «CarScanners» choosed contact immobilizers as a best solution. The main advantage of contact immobilizers is that there is no radio signal that could be stolen by an attacker.
A small explanation – in contactless immobilizers it is used a radio tag that you carry with you. When you get into the car, the main unit of the immobilizer receives its signal and gives permission to start the engine.
Is it convenient? -certainly. Everything happens without your direct participation.
But there is a minus – one way of stealing cars with contactless immobilizers is that the attacker mounts miniature device that could steal a signal under the bottom of the car. And at night, when you sleep, he could just take off the device, which has already stolen a signal from your radio tag, and disable the contactless immobilizer.
For our contact immobilizers, we have chosen electronic keys (chip tablet) Dallas Touch Memory DS1990A (DTM) manufactured by the American company Dallas Semiconductor, which developed this technology. Our company “CarScanners” has developed a series of anti-theft systems Redut, Bastion, Fort, Castle, Citadel with Electromechanical and digital relays blocking.
The composition of these systems also includes anti-theft “secrets” with contact management from one of the two buttons (can be used any regular mechanical button of your car – for example the button of the handbrake, brake pedal, etc.). Anti-theft “secret” provides protection against theft, not allowing to start the car engine, if you do not enter a special secret Pin code by pressing the selected button.
Let’s talk about the features of some models of our anti-theft systems.
First, it is an anti-theft “secret” Redut. It is installed in the wiring harness. The connection is made with a dozen wires. Control is performed by two buttons. This system has two locking circuits. Among the advantages are small sizes, easy operation, and importantly – stealth installation. The attacker will not simply find a place where the car electrician installer hid the device – it is so small that it is woven into the braid of your car and could not be determined visually even if you disassemble your car.
Next is the immobilizer Bastion. This device is controlled by the tablet DTM firm Dallas. The installation of this device is also carried out in wiring harnesses.
The Fort immobilizer should be installed in a standard body relay. Control is a DTM key company Dallas. The blocking is carried out by an additional external relay. The output current to the lock is 10 A. This device has a dynamic MVI code (Matrix Verify identification). Thanks to this code, the protective properties have been increased, which do not give a chance to use a stolen electronic key, key simulator or electronic copiers.
Our most powerful anti-theft systems are Castle and Citadel. The main advantages of these devices are protection against selection of the EC code, control authorization of the car owner with the help of a button, protection of doors and the ignition circuit, the presence of a powerful output for the siren and an increased number of PIN codes with the distinction of short and long presses.
Also implemented “anti criminal” mode-in the event that the bandits throw you out of the car and try to leave. But they will not go far – after a few hundred meters the car will stall.
But there are also drawbacks to these systems, namely the multi-step procedures of training and programming modes require only a qualified auto electrician who will follow the installation instructions clearly. Please do not try to install Castle or Citadel systems yourself if you do not have technical skills.
Castle and Citadel systems differ in configuration.
Mechanical anti-theft devices for cars are usually divided into two classes:
- class of locks
- class of blockers
These devices have only one common property –locking mechanisms with larvae, which are opened with keys. Locks are a special design that is installed permanently and firmly fixed in the car.
The main function of the gearbox locks is to block the gear lever, which will not allow to steal the car under its own power. The car with a manual gearbox attackers will be forced to tow with the clutch off. Well, as for the automatic transmission, in this case, the lever is locked in the Parking position.
The main drawback of the gearbox locks is that the attackers have learned to quickly break these locks. Usually, the lock is filled with liquid nitrogen from the can (the temperature of liquid nitrogen is minus 195 degrees Celsius) – the lock metal instantly freezes and becomes brittle. After that, the lock could be simply broken with a hammer.
One of the most common methods of theft, to quickly start the car equipped with a regular immobilizer, is to replace the ECU (electronic control unit) engine with another unit with a disabled system of the standard immobilizer.
Basically, this method hijackers use to rather simple (from the point of view established by manufacturer of protection systems) cars – Kia, Hyundai, Toyota, Lexus, Nissan, Infinity, Honda, Acura, and most American cars (Chevrolet, Ford and so on).
The attacker opens the car in one way or another, opens the hood of the car, changes the standard engine control unit to a pre-prepared, starts the car with a screwdriver and leaves.
Seems complicated? Believe me-the crooks do it faster than you read this paragraph.
Hood locks are used to prevent this method of theft.
The most common type of these locks is the hood lock with cable drive. It is protected by a strong metal braid. The lock larva, which is located at the end of the cable, is placed in the car. And at the second end of the cable is fixed locking pin with sled. In order to close the lock, it is necessary to press on its larva, then the locking pin comes out of the sled and locks the hood bracket. The lock can only be opened with a key.
The mechanical locks have a main disadvantage-you can get to the rope and tear it up with powerful clippers, and then open the hood.
Our company uses Electromechanical device, which has a fundamental difference from the cable locks in the top system Citadel. This device has an even more powerful locking mechanism in the form of a hook and pin. Its position is controlled by an electric drive, and the secrecy is provided by the head unit.
The main difference from cable locks is that there is no cable that can be eaten, everything is controlled only electrically.
There is a minus – if the car battery is discharged, you can not open the car’s hood to charge the battery.
But we have provided and complete the complex Citadel emergency socket, which is displayed in a convenient place to supply electricity to the main battery from any charger 12 volts – to unlock the electromagnetic lock.
Steering wheel blockers
Mechanical anti-theft device on the steering wheel in its properties similar to the lock of the steering shaft, as the main task of both designs is to block the start of the vehicle. Traditionally, the design of the steering wheel lock includes a wheel rim grip, a metal rod and a lock type lock. Metal rod rests against the windscreen or the front panel.
Of the advantages of these devices-a very low price.
Of the minuses-break with hydraulic cutters or using liquid nitrogen (as well as with the gearbox locks)
The main task of the anti-theft device on the pedal is to block the clutch and brake pedals of the vehicle. They could be installed at the bottom of the pedal unit, and it is extremely inconvenient. Despite the fact that the locks of the pedals of the car are massive, they are often overcomed by attackers, cutting the pedals themselves, or simply removing them from the axis.
Or in the same ways as with the steering blockers.
In General, we can say that this is a good protection. They are mounted in the slot of the wheel, and the rod which protrudes rests on the surface of the road, preventing the movement of cars. The main advantage of this type of blockers is that the hijacker will have to break the device from the outside of the car, so you can easily find him. But there are drawbacks, and they are quite obvious. First, is a fact of slow and inconvenient installation, and secondly, the necessity of removing the decorative caps.
Satellite tracking systems and GPS (GSM) trackers
Satellite tracking system is one of the most effective ways to protect the vehicle.
The principle of operation of this device is to track the location of the vehicle satellite via GPS (Global Positioning System). The stolen car can be tracked anywhere in the World. If an attacker attempts to steal a car, the Manager receives a signal from the satellite. Then you should call the car owner to confirm the theft. If the fact of theft is confirmed, the task force immediately leaves and detains the hijacker.
The main disadvantage of these systems is the extremely high price and cost of annual maintenance. And also the fact that satellite tracking systems do not work in all countries and there are many cheap systems that block the transmission of signal.
GPS (GSM) tracker. Funny toy-in the same place in China, where you buy a similar device, you can buy a GPS jamming system. It costs the same as the tracker and must be inserted into the cigarette lighter in order to do the location of the car not determined, as the GSM signal is suppressed. Hijackers immediately use these jammers and only then understand – is there a tracker in the car or not. Waste of money…
The car must be protected, for your own peace of mind.
Naturally, we need to take an adequate approach to security issues. If you have an old car, it is enough to put a simple car alarm and a lock on the steering wheel-it is reliably scare away teenagers who want to” ride ” on your car.
And the cost is not high – about 100 usd for your peace of mind.
But if you have a car as Mercedes or Lexus-this car can attract the attention of professional hijackers, for which the regular security system of the car is not a problem.
Taking into account the cost of your car, you can think about the CarScanners Citadel level of protection complexes and turn the car into a real “digital fortress” inaccessible to hacking by any modern means. And then the hijackers will go to your neighbor, who did not care about the protection of his favorite car :))).