Tag Archives: tantalum corporation

96% OF CAR OWNERS VULNERABLE TO A RELAY ATTACK BY CRIMINALS TRACKER urges motorists to safeguard their keys to prevent theft

tracker

According to the latest figures from TRACKER (part of the Tantalum Corporation), 96% of motorists it surveyed are at risk of having their car stolen by criminals using the latest theft technique – a relay attack.   In 2016, 66% of TRACKER’s stolen vehicle recovery customer thefts’ were committed by way of a ‘relay attack’, confirming just how prevalent this crime has become.

Not only are so many people vulnerable to the risk of theft via this means, 25% of those surveyed by TRACKER said they leave their car keys somewhere in the hallway overnight.  This is the most common room in the house for thieves to target to intercept an electronic car key’s signal, and it’s where the signal is likely to be strongest because of its proximity to the vehicle itself.

A ‘relay attack’ is a new method used by car thieves, which involves two criminals working together using electronic signal relay devices.  Just recently, CCTV footage obtained by West Midlands Police of a theft of a Mercedes2, confirmed just how easily criminals can use a device to receive the car key signal from inside the victim’s home, transferring that signal to the second box, which is placed next to the car. The car’s system is tricked into thinking the key is there, allowing thieves to unlock the vehicle and drive away within minutes.

The TRACKER survey shows that 13% of people leave their keys on the hallway table, which is as good as leaving the door open for thieves. A quarter (25%) leave their keys in a dedicated key pot or on a key hook elsewhere downstairs, whilst 15% put them in a drawer in a downstairs room.  Although putting keys in a drawer means they are out of sight should an opportunistic burglar be on the prowl, it won’t protect them from a relay attack should a techno savvy car thief be lurking outside.

“We’re seeing more and more of these relay attacks taking place across the country,” explains Andy Barrs, Head of Police Liaison at TRACKER. “It’s clear from our survey that many people are unintentionally leaving themselves vulnerable to these kinds of attack, by putting their keys in easy reach of  relay devices.

“The good news is there are simple precautions people can take. Whilst the relay devices can receive signals through walls, doors and windows, metal is its enemy, so putting keys in a metal tin or the microwave is a cost effective way to thwart the criminals.  Alternatively, invest in a metallised signal blocking pouch, such as a Faraday wallet, which is designed to shield electronic keys from relay attacks.

“It’s also worth remembering that vehicle security should be multi-layered and shouldn’t just rely on the keyless security system. Physical barriers, such as crook locks and wheel clamps will deter thieves. And whilst investing in a tracking device won’t stop a car being stolen, it can significantly increase the chances of police locating it and returning it to the rightful owner. This, plus added vigilance, dramatically contributes to keeping thieves at bay.”

Unlike other devices, TRACKER’s unique technology can locate stolen vehicles anywhere, even when they are hidden in a garage or shipping container. TRACKER has been reuniting car lovers with their vehicles for nearly 25 years, and it’s this expertise which makes TRACKER the leader in stolen vehicle recovery. TRACKER stolen vehicle recovery systems work like an electronic homing device. A covert transmitter is hidden in one of several dozen places around the vehicle. There is no visible aerial, so the thief won’t even know it’s there.

Where do you typically leave your car keys at night?

1.     In the hallway – either on a table or in a bag or coat pocket                                25%

2.     A dedicated key pot or key hook elsewhere in the house                                   25%

3.     In a draw downstairs                                                                                           16%

4.     In my bedroom                                                                                                       12%

5.     A combination of 1-4 above                                                                                  10%

6.     Somewhere in the house – I usually have to hunt for them in the morning          8%

7.     A metal container to ensure it is protected from a relay attack                            4%

 

TRACKER’S TOP TIPS ON HOW TO AVOID VEHICLE THEFT

Check it’s locked. Always double check that your car is physically secure and alarmed, when using keyless locking systems. Wait to see the flashing hazard lights confirm it’s locked. Thieves frequently lie in wait and block locking signals as owners walk away from their cars.

Keep keys out of sight.  Leaving keys in the hallway or on the kitchen worktop means thieves can break in and swipe them quickly, before driving off in your car. Put them in a drawer or out of sight in a bag, at least.

 

Block electronic key fob signals.  A faraday wallet is designed to shield electronic car keys from relay attacks – a new theft technique that involves extending a key fob’s signal by relaying it from one device to another.   But you could also put them in a metal tin or microwave overnight to protect them from a relay attack.

Add layers of security.  Physical barriers can be effective in deterring thieves. Consider adding a crook lock or wheel clamp to your car. Alternatively, a driveway parking post or just locked gates can stop thieves in their tracks.

Install a ‘ghost immobiliser’.  For another layer of protection, add a secondary barrier to your car’s factory fitted immobiliser by having a unique access code to start your car.

Invest in a tracking device. A tracking device won’t stop your vehicle being stolen, but it significantly increases chances of police recovering and returning it, if thieves do take it.

Source: Tracker

 

Over Half A Million Pounds Of Stolen Light Commercial Vehicles Recovered In 2016

tracker

 

  • Light Commercial Vehicles (LCV) worth over half a million pounds were recovered by TRACKER in 2016
  • The average LCV value was £19,333
  • 44% of the vehicles were stolen using the owner’s keys and 44% of them were stolen and recovered in London
  • The Ford Transit accounted for over 50% of all LCVs recovered by TRACKER

According to the latest figures from TRACKER (part of the Tantalum Corporation,) Light Commercial Vehicles (LCVs) made up over half a million pounds of the overall recoveries in 2016. The Ford Transit was the most popular van stolen last year and accounted for over half of the LCV recoveries made by TRACKER. The stolen vehicle recovery (SVR) expert is urging business owners to ramp up the security on their vans.

The latest figures reveal the average value of vans stolen and recovered was £19,333, with 44% being stolen using the owner’s keys. Furthermore, London was the hot spot for van thieves in 2016 as 44% were stolen in the Capital.

Andy Barrs, Head of Police Liaison at TRACKER, comments, “A high number of vans are stolen in the UK every year, and our latest figures highlight just how much of an impact this can have on businesses. Nearly five and a half thousand Ford Transits were stolen in the UK last year, which is a thousand more than the previous year. Additionally, Mercedes Sprinters are proving to be equally as attractive to organised criminal gangs.

“The theft of a van can hit companies really hard regardless of their size, such as the loss of valuable tools and equipment, loss of business and costs associated with hiring a replacement, so van operators really need to consider protecting their vehicles with TRACKER’s market leading SVR technology.”

Unlike other stolen vehicle recovery devices, TRACKER’s unique technology can locate vehicles anywhere, even when they are hidden in a garage or shipping container. TRACKER has been reuniting car lovers with their vehicles for nearly 25 years, and it’s this expertise which makes TRACKER the leader in stolen vehicle recovery.

“Although using a TRACKER may not stop vehicles from being stolen in the first place, it dramatically increases the likelihood of it being recovered before it’s too late,” concludes Andy Barrs.

Source: Tracker

Wifi and cloud based applications bring a new wave of car hacking

Wifi and cloud based applications bring a new wave of car hacking

tracker

Security researchers* have exposed security vulnerability in Mitsubishi Outlander hybrid cars that allowed hackers to remotely turn off the car’s alarm system, control the lights and drain the battery. Stolen vehicle recovery expert, TRACKER (part of the Tantalum Corporation), which has been a longstanding campaigner against vulnerable vehicle security systems, warns that in-car wifi and cloud based applications present a wide range of opportunities for thieves to attack, making it even more difficult  for modern vehicles to be completely secure from determined hackers.

Head of Police Liaison at TRACKER, and a former Chief Superintendent for South Yorkshire Police, Andy Barrs says, “The latest security breach, involving the Mitsubishi Outlander, demonstrates just how advanced thieves are in developing their tactics to tackle new technology. Although manufacturers are constantly developing new immobiliser technology, designed to outpace criminals and make new models significantly more secure, thieves will continue to look for new ways to outwit them, including exploiting telematics and mobile connectivity.

“Of late, standalone key programming theft tools have been making news headlines, but over the next decade, cloud-based theft tools that simply require internet connection are anticipated to dominate.  By hacking this type of technology thieves are able to easily target the most desirable models and steal to order, requiring no tools to enter or drive the vehicle away.”

TRACKER’s stolen vehicle recovery (SVR) device is the only solution used by all the UK’s police forces; it works like an electronic homing device.  A covert transmitter is hidden in one of several dozen places around the vehicle, and there is no visible aerial, so the thief won’t even know it’s there.   Uniquely, TRACKER combines GSM, GPS and VHF technology, which means it is able to locate a stolen vehicle anywhere, even when if it is hidden in a garage or shipping container.  It’s this matchless combination of technology that makes TRACKER’s SVR solutions resilient to ‘jamming’ – another commonly used tactic by car thieves – creating the most robust stolen car tracking and locating unit available.

Source: Tracker

BMW X5 reclaims reign as most ‘stolen and recovered’ car in 2016 reports TRACKER

tracker

According to the latest figures from TRACKER (part of the Tantalum Corporation), the prestige 4×4, BMW X5, reclaimed its place as the most stolen and recovered vehicle in 2016.  BMW, Range Rover and Mercedes-Benz models dominated the 2016 TRACKER Top 10 Most Stolen and Recovered league table, but the Land Rover Defender entered the league for the first time, confirming a rise in demand since its production stopped in January of last year.  Audi falls out of the league table for the first time since 2011*.

2015 was the first time in the last 8 years when the BMW X5 didn’t hit the top spot; it was ousted by the Range Rover Sport which returned to second place in 2016. Four BMW models feature in the 2016 table, with the BMW M3 making a return appearance at third place; it dropped out of the table last year. The Range Rover Autobiography moves up to seventh place and the Range Roger Vogue drops to eighth.

In 2016, TRACKER reported a year-on-year increase of over 10% in the total volume of stolen cars it recovered; over £11.5 million worth of stolen vehicles were returned to their rightful owners. Andy Barrs, Head of Police Liaison at TRACKER explains, “Our latest figures reveal a shift in the most desirable makes and models that thieves are stealing to order, but 4x4s remain the most popular type of vehicles for thieves.  However, with the Mercedes C and E Class sitting in fourth and fifth, respectively, premium executive cars are also proving to be a target for criminals.”

The most expensive stolen car recovered by TRACKER in 2016 was a Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG worth £120,000, followed by a Range Rover Autobiography and a Porsche 993, both worth £100,000.

“However, it’s important to note that the average value of vehicles stolen and recovered dropped to an average of £16,436, down from over £19,000 in 2015,” continues Andy Barrs.  “Thieves continued to target more affordable, yet popular brands, such as Ford, Vauxhall, and VW models, which were stolen in even greater numbers in 2016.  27% of all vehicles recovered by TRACKER in 2016 were valued at less than £5,000, including a VW Golf worth £400.

“1 in 3 vehicles recovered by TRACKER were stolen using the owner’s keys.  Although a TRACKER device won’t prevent a vehicle from being stolen, it’s clear from our figures that they significantly increase the chances of it being recovered and returned by the police. We continue to work closely with all UK police forces and in 2016 we assisted with 62 arrests, helping to close the net on the criminals.”

Unlike other stolen vehicle recovery devices, TRACKER’s unique technology can locate vehicles anywhere, even when they are hidden in a garage or shipping container. TRACKER has been reuniting car lovers with their vehicles for over 23 years, and it’s this expertise which makes TRACKER the leader in stolen vehicle recovery.

*The first The TRACKER Top Ten Most Stolen and Recovered League Table was published in 2011

TRACKER’S TOP TEN MOST STOLEN AND RECOVERED
TRACKER 2016 RECOVERY HIGHLIGHTS
Top Models Stolen in 2016 Top Models Stolen in 2015
1. BMW X5 1. Range Rover Sport
2. Range Rover Sport 2. BMW X5
3. BMW M3 3. Range Rover Vogue
4. Mercedes C Class 4. Mercedes C220
5. Mercedes E Class 5. BMW 3 Series
6. BMW 3 Series 6. Mercedes C63
7. Range Rover Autobiography 7. BMW 5 Series
8. Range Rover Vogue 8. Audi RS4
9. Land Rover Defender 9. Range Rover Biography
10. BMW 5 Series 10. Audi Q7
  • TRACKER recovered over £11.5million worth of vehicles in 2016
  • Average value of cars recovered in 2016 was £16,436 a decrease of £2,919, compared to 2015
  • A total of 62 arrests were made in 2016
  • 86 vehicles not fitted with a TRACKER device were also recovered alongside TRACKER recovered vehicles
  • January was the busiest month in 2016 with 74 recoveries in total worth £1,374,500
 Source: Tracker

Land Rover Defender thefts up 75%

 landrover def

 

Shocking new statistics from NFU Mutual, reveal that thefts of Land Rover Defenders have increased by a staggering 75%, as gangs of thieves target rural areas to swipe vehicles.  The Defender ceased production in January, which has led to a significant rise in demand for the car and its parts.  Backing NFU Mutual’s campaign to warn Land Rover owners to be vigilant, TRACKER, the UK’s leading stolen vehicle recovery (SVR) provider, adds that many of these stolen vehicles are being shipped overseas, and urges owners to fit a tracking device before they disappear for good, as recommended by NFU Mutual.

Police forces across the UK are reporting a rise in thefts, with many fearing that criminal gangs with links to the US and Eastern Europe are targeting owners.   Land Rover Defender owners are being advised to improve their security by investing several layers of protection, including trackers, alarms and steering-wheel locks.  NFU Mutual is also advising owners to mark components with paint and to keep vehicles locked up or parked in well-lit areas.  Following this advice will substantially increase the chances of these classic 4x4s being located and recovered.

Adrian Davenport, Police Liaison Manager for TRACKER, part of the Tantalum Corporation, says, “Criminal gangs often target particular vehicles when demand increases and the Land Rover Defender is a popular vehicle all around the globe. Not surprisingly, since they’ve been discontinued, the Defender has risen to the top of the car thief’s hit list, with the northeast, southwest and the midlands reported to be where the highest number of insurance claims are being made.

“Owners of Defenders tend to live in rural areas, so well-lit parking isn’t always possible, making it vital that people ensure they take ample security measures.   A tracking device won’t stop a car being stolen, but it can significantly increase the chance of police locating and returning a vehicle to its owners. Without a TRACKER fitted, Land Rover Defenders can be hidden in containers without detection and shipped abroad by organised criminal gangs who will make a tidy profit.  Don’t make it easy for thieves, fit a TRACKER device to help police close the net on the criminals.”

TRACKER’s SVR systems work like an electronic homing device. A covert transmitter is hidden in one of several dozen places around the vehicle, and there is no visible aerial, so the thief won’t even know it’s there.

Unlike any other provider of SVR devices, some TRACKER products combines GSM, GPS and VHF technology, and its use of VHF technology makes it resilient to ‘jamming’, creating the most robust SVR device available.   Jamming devices, readily available on the internet, are increasingly being used by car thieves to disrupt GPS signals so that the police are unable to track and locate stolen vehicles fitted with SVR devises that rely on GPS alone.
Adrian Davenport concludes:  “We strongly advise Land Rover Defender owners to choose a system that provides a more resilient solution and, better still, one that delivers multiple means of location and communication. TRACKER’s SVR systems use unique VHF technology, offering motorists effective safeguards against theft, even if the GPS does fail.”

Source: Tracker/NFU Mutual

TRACKER unveils the top ten regions where cars were most stolen and recovered in 2015

tracker

The latest stolen vehicle recovery (SVR) figures for 2015 from TRACKER (part of the Tantalum Corporation), reveal that London continues to top the list of regions where cars were most stolen and recovered.   Year-on-year TRACKER saw a 12% increase in the number of stolen vehicles recovered across the UK in 2015, equating to nearly £12.5 million worth of vehicles being returned to their owners.

Londoners love Land Rover.  Three Range Rover models dominated SVR figures within London – the Sport, Vogue and Autobiography – but they also appear in TRACKER’s ‘UK top 10 most stolen and recovered’ table demonstrating the popularity of the brand with thieves across the UK.  The highly desirable Range Rover Sport was the UK’s most stolen and recovered vehicle in 2015.

Greater Manchester held the second highest number of stolen and recovered cars in 2015 after the capital, knocking Essex off the number 2 spot that it held in 2014.   Models from the Mercedes-Benz range of vehicles were the most commonly stolen and recovered in Greater Manchester.  The Mercedes Benz C220 and the Mercedes Benz C63 both feature in the UK’s top 10 most stolen and recovered’ table.    The Mercedes Benz C63 climbs six places to number four, having entered the top 10 last year.

West Midlands retains 3rd position for the second year in a row, where BMWs were the most stolen and recovered.  The BMW X5 had held the number one most stolen and recovered spot across the UK for the last 6 years, until the Range Rover Sport knocked it off poll position.  The BMW 3 and 5 series make a re-appearance in the league table after a number of years’ absence, last listed in 2013 and 2009 respectively.

Regions in the south east of England dominated the list including Essex, Kent, Surrey and Hertfordshire, where BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Land Rover were favoured in equal measure by thieves.

West Yorkshire and Merseyside represent the north of England; Merseyside reappears in the league table for the first time in a couple of years where Audi was most recorded as stolen and recovered; The Audi Q7 also makes its first appearance in the nationwide league table, coming in 10th.   In joint tenth place for regional hot spots were Lancashire and Leicestershire; Leicestershire replaces Lanarkshire which disappears from the top ten list in 2015.

Comments Andy Barrs, Head of Police Liaison at TRACKER.  “Our analysis highlights some interesting consumer manufacturer preferences by region, as well as an overall shift in the most desirable makes and models that thieves are stealing to order, with 4x4s dominating our top ten.”

“However, whilst it’s common for car thieves to target premium marques, we should not underestimate the massive appetite for Ford, Vauxhall, and VW models which are stolen in even greater numbers, but which most owners do not protect by fit tracking devices.”  Concludes Andy Barrs;  “A Home Office Report published in January this year suggests that fitting a tracking device could be the best solution against criminals succeeding in selling on stolen vehicles.”

By using its unique VHF technology, TRACKER stolen vehicle recovery (SVR) units can overcome potential theft recovery hurdles such as concealment in underground garages or shipping containers.  Crucially, the use of GPS/GSM technology also means it can beat signal jamming, a common tactic employed by professional criminals.

TRACKER’S TOP TEN MOST STOLEN AND RECOVERED

2014 2015
Top ten cars by make and model most frequently stolen and recovered
  1. BMW X5
  2. Mercedes C Class
  3. Range Rover Sport
  4. Mercedes Benz E Class
  5. Land Rover Discovery
  6. BMW M3
  7. Range Rover Vogue
  8. Audi RS4
  9. Mercedes Benz ML
  10. Mercedes Benz C63
  1. Range Rover Sport
  2. BMW X5
  3. Range Rover Vogue
  4. Mercedes Benz C220
  5. BMW 3 Series
  6. Mercedes Benz C63
  7. BMW 5 Series
  8. Audi RS4
  9. Range Rover Autobiography
  10. Audi Q7

TRACKER’S TOP TEN REGIONS WHERE CARS ARE STOLEN AND RECOVERED

2014 2015
1. Greater London and London
2. Essex
3. West Midlands
4 & 5. = Surrey/Greater Manchester
6. Kent
7 & 8. = West Yorkshire/Hertfordshire
9 & 10. = Lancashire/Lanarkshire
1. Greater London
2. Greater Manchester
3. West Midlands
4. Essex
5. Kent
6. Surrey
7. West Yorkshire
8. Hertfordshire
9. Merseyside
10. = Lancashire/Leicestershire
 Source: Tracker