How Car Thieves Operate, Khan Explains

Mr Khan emphasised the importance of having a licence for making keys and called on authorities to regulate this.
23 Feb 2022 14:28
How Car Thieves Operate, Khan Explains
Auto Car Locksmith director and licenced locksmith Nik Smith demonstrate’s how vehicle with electronic locks sensors are forced opened on February 22, 2022. Photo: Ronald Kumar

Police have arrested and charged people in relation to stripping cars and reselling them in the past.

This was confirmed by Police spokesperson Ana Naisoro who said there had been past cases where cars had been stripped and resold.

According to Police reports, the Central Division recorded two cases of vehicle theft while one case was recorded in the Western Division since last December.


Call for key making regulation

Managing Director of Safeway Electronics Limited Tauz Khan said the theft of vehicles could be stopped if getting a licence for making car keys was regulated.

“Our concern is that there are few of us who are legitimate licenced people and are traceable,” he said.

“If we make your key and your car gets stolen, you can report it to the Police.

“But if you see on social media, people are showing hundreds of remotes for making spare keys.”

Mr Khan emphasised the importance of having a licence for making keys and called on authorities to regulate this.

“It is very important that the Ministry of Defense regulate a licence because if a car is lost, it can never be found.

“It will be stripped overnight and parts will be sold.”

Mr Khan said customers also needed to be responsible when making decisions about making their keys.

He said those without licences charge more affordable prices which was why people opted for their keys to be made by someone rather than a professional.

“It is the people who can stop this by asking the licence number of the key maker,” Mr Khan said.

Mr Khan said keys can be imported from Japan or spare part companies locally.


Ways thieves steal vehicles

“The ones with a smartlock system need its data held from the previous cars to be erased,” he said.

“For erasing data, a machine is also needed for programming which can be done in five minutes so the only way is a licence to be regulated.”

Mr Khan said gadgets for these activities were imported without any licence.

“If I bought 100 keys and I go to the Post Office to collect my items, they don’t ask me if I have a licence or not and these things need to be enforced,” he said.

“Those people who do not have a licence should be stopped because they are the ones making keys for people to steal cars.”

He said stealing a smart vehicle using a key and stripping it to sell its parts could be done in a matter of minutes.

“It can be stolen if a key is made,” he said.

“Each one of those keys has a transponder chip that has security, but if I make one then where is the security?”

Mr Khan said the device was used to collect the data in a key, in order to copy it to another key, was easily available for purchase online.

“I can copy the data to another key, start the vehicle and take off, that’s how easy it is,” Mr Khan said while demonstrating how another key of a vehicle could be made.

“The device to copy data is very cheap and your anti-theft feature will be of no use if a key is made.”

Mr Khan also revealed a few other methods that thieves used to steal vehicles.

“Opening cars using a wedge is another way to steal cars,” he said.

“Another method is frequency grabber. There is a unit similar to a key maker that can be used for this.”

However, Mr Khan said the device used to capture frequency was very expensive and was used by professionals. He said as far as he was aware, the device was not available in Fiji at the moment but could be purchased from certain countries.


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