Police issue urgent warning to Ford Fiesta owners as criminals ‘target’ popular model

Hampton: Thieves use aerial to steal keyless car in 30 seconds

Police have confirmed the popular Fiesta ST models “appear to be a target” with thieves using new technology to break into cars. The thefts took place inside the Borough of Rossendale, just to the South of Burnley, Blackburn and Preston.

Rossendale Police posted on Facebook they had attended reports of two Ford Fiesta ST cars being stolen across the region before issuing a warning to road users.

The post said: “Tonight we have unfortunately attended reports of a Ford Fiesta ST being stolen from the Haslingden area.

“Then we have located another Ford Fiesta ST in the Edenfield area which had been interfered with in an attempt to steal it.

“If you own one of these vehicles please take extra care around security as they appear to be a target in our area at present.”

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Police officers said the thefts were linked to keyless car thefts where criminals can gain access to cars in seconds using new tools.

Thieves use relay devices to capture the signal used by a car’s keyless system to unlock the vehicle.

The device transmits the signal to someone standing by the victim’s car which tricks into thinking the owner has arrived.

Thieves only need to be within a few meters of your car keys for the scam to work.

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Keyless thefts are becoming more popular as criminals do not need to make a scene to gain instant access to a car.

Rossendale Police confirmed keyless thefts was a crime they were “seeing more and more of”.

They urged drivers to store their keys in a certain type of case which can stop the code from being accessed.

They said: “The vehicle is Haslingden was recorded which allowed the offenders to take the vehicle without the keys.

“This is something we are seeing more and more of.

“We have found that if you put your keys in a ‘Farraday’ case it prevents the code being obtained from your key, preventing the thief recoding the key and stealing the vehicle.”

Government data shows car theft is on the rise across England and Wales with a 52 percent rise over the past six years.

A total of 92 percent of vehicles stolen and recovered by car experts Tracker in 2019 were taken without the owner’s keys.

However, experts have warned drivers can take simple precautions to avoid falling victim to the offence.

Tracker warns metal is the enemy of relay devices so putting keys in a metal tin can be an effective way to stop criminals.

Clive Wain, Head of Police Liaison at Tracker said using keyless decides was a method thieves have “increasingly adopted” in recent years.

He said: “We are seeing more and more keyless car theft taking place across the country.”

“It’s fair to say that criminals continue to stay one step ahead of manufacturers and ‘relay attack’ is one method car thieves have increasingly adopted.”

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