Watch CBS News

Car Burglars in Gilroy Likely Gained Vehicle Access Via Hacked Electronic Key Fobs

GILROY (KPIX) -- More than a half-dozen cars were broken into overnight in a new Gilroy subdivision but it's how the thieves apparently got inside the vehicles that has stumped homeowners and has security analysts sounding the alarm.

"Security people have been raising the alarm that there is a way to essentially hack a key fob," said CNET analyst Ian Sherr.

Gilroy Homeowner Renee Anaya
Gilroy homeowner Renee Anaya. (CBS)

That's what appears to have happened overnight in Gilroy. Homeowner Renee Anaya says she's security conscious and always makes sure her car door is closed and locked.

"I remember my husband closing the trunk. And I said, 'Did you lock the door?' He says, 'I locked it.' I went back out anyway to double check and it was locked," Anaya said.

But when her husband got up to go to work, she says he discovered his truck and her personal car unlocked, doors ajar and contents of the glove box strewn around the front seat. Several of their neighbors' cars had also been broken into.

"I looked over to the right and there was a car with the door open and I looked to the left and I saw a few more cars with the doors open," Anaya said.

Sherr says thieves can use a device that can trick your key fob into sending a signal to unlock your car door.

"The car companies are trying to come up with a way to combat this but it is a potential threat if people know how to do it," Sherr said.

Sherr says the only way currently to safeguard against this type of break-in is to place your keys in a pouch or container designed to block radio waves.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.