Nowadays, it can be really easy to forget just how far technology has come over the years.
Take cars for example. So many of us drive vehicles that come equipped with airbags, backup cameras, Bluetooth technology, blind spot detectors, remote starters, and keyless entry.
These are all features that were unimaginable just a couple of decades ago, but now we can't seem to live without them.
However, with advancements in technology comes certain setbacks, and we often end up paying the price.
Car owners often have to worry about their vehicles being broken into because the parts and features built into the cars make them very valuable. What's even worse is that these days, a car thief doesn't even need to get their hands on your keys or pick the door lock to get inside.
If you drive a modern vehicle, chances are you use a keyless entry system or a fob to unlock it (and even start the engine) from a distance as long as you're within a couple hundred feet of the car.
Unfortunately, this feature isn't just convenient for you, it makes it that much easier for thieves to get a hold of your car.
They can easily break into your car just by intercepting the wireless signal that is emitted from the chip embedded into the key fob. Since it requires a unique code for this to work, all a hacker needs to do is steal the wireless signal just twice, then use a software to narrow the code down to the right one.
Criminals can also get amplifiers that will strengthen your car's signal, so for those who use always-on key fobs, the system can be activated even if you're 300 feet away.
While automobile manufacturers are working hard to figure out how they can solve this growing issue regarding car security systems, you can take steps to protect yourself until a solution is available.
One of the easiest methods only requires the use of a household item that you probably already have in the kitchen - aluminum foil.
While speaking with USA Today, retired FBI agent and cyber-security expert Holly Hubert advised vehicle owners to wrap their fobs in tinfoil because the metal helps block signals from being picked up by criminals.
"Although it's not ideal, it is the most inexpensive way," said Hubert, adding, "The cyber threat is so dynamic and ever changing, it’s hard for consumers to keep up."
If you're willing to spend a little bit of money, there are products designed specifically to protect your key fob from thieves.
This one from Amazon will set you back $32, but it comes with free shipping. In addition to your key fob, you can use it for your credits card, cell phone, and anything else that has a signal. It's small price to pay for the safety of your car.
[H/T: USA Today]
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