Sometimes I stumble upon an article while slumming the internet that shows me we’re all doomed. This latest article from Fox News is one of them. I know what they’re trying to say, but all it seems to do is incite hysteria and create more problems than it solves. Some of these suggestions are hilarious.
I do not subscribe to any particular news outlet. I believe they all have their inherent issues. They all are trying to steer us towards a particular political or social issue they find most important. My Google Chrome is constantly finding different articles based on what I knowingly surf in my free time. Sometimes it scores a win, and other times it finds the most odd articles. My Google account must think I’m part academic and part nut... it got one thing right.
The Fox News Article Titled, “Why you should wrap your car keys in aluminum foil”, I believe is geared towards educating people about new methods of auto theft. I think it misses its mark. It provides several pieces of advice to prevent thieves from stealing the electronic data from your key fob to unlock and steal your vehicle. Get ready for a laugh...
1. Sticking the keys in the fridge. Okay each of these will be some sort of ‘sticking your keys in a Faraday cage’ but this one is great for battery life. What could be better than a frigid environment than a fridge? The freezer? Why not put they keys into the Folgers can first AND then into the freezer? Double Faraday Cage! Old people will freeze anything (wedding cake, left overs from a restaurant, and even their beloved animals).
2. Placing the key into the microwave. This is the worst. I’m guessing that most of the people who actually searched for this article (instead of Google finding it for them because it thinks they’re crazy) are either old or nutty. Both of those segments of the demographic are forgetful people. You know what isn’t cheap? Frying your key fob in the microwave. Not only could you need new keys but a new microwave.
3. Wrapping the key in foil. Yes, the most simple Faraday Cage. Foil does work but it also makes you look like a tin-foil hat wearing weirdo. I once met a lady who wrapped all of her electronics in her residence in foil and all commonly touched surfaces in plastic wrap because ‘they’ could hear her. I’m sure she is now in a mental institution.
4. Buying an RFID blocker. This is most sensible thing but it also defeats the purpose of having a key fob in the first place. You’d have to pull it out every single time. Don’t the thieves wait for you to USE your key to steal the data? Why don’t we just go back to metal keys? Or go back to a time when no cars had keys? Can’t we just be on an honor system? What if the penalty for auto theft was to lop off an arm? I don’t think it would work. We worship the outlaw culture and ridiculousness associated with a risk taking philosophy in our country (USA).
I understand that people are worried about the risk of theft associated with a defeatable technology. Unfortunately, everything that has been invented will be defeated. When we invented metal armor for knights - they made guns to pierce the armor. The same will happen here, we invented a secure wireless transmission - criminals will find a way to crack it.
The thing people miss here is that it is expensive, and requires some know-how to defeat a key fob. There aren’t any common street criminals running around with these devices yet. If one day an iPhone app does the same thing, we’re in trouble. Time to invest in aluminum foil...