Can Hyundai, Kia cars be stolen using just a USB cable? Here's a quick check
Reports of increasing car theft in the US has been a concern for some time now but several local reports as well as social-media users have pointed to how it could also be a simple process in some models from Hyundai and Kia where the accused makes use of just a USB cable to drive off.
According to reports, Kia models from 2011 onwards and Hyundai models from 2015 onwards are being specifically targeted by those with nefarious intentions with just a USB cable. These particular models are the ones that do not have engine immobilizers, a technology that makes it necessary for a coded key or fob to be used. As such, it is reportedly possible to engage the USB cable at a certain place and potentially activate the engine. It is further reported that a certain group of people called ‘Kia Boys’ have even taken to social media platforms to show how this can be made possible without the need for a key or fob.
In major US cities like St. Louis, Cincinnati, Columbus, among others, there has been a rise in the number of car thefts with Hyundai and Kia models especially targeted. This however does not include newer car models which come with engine immobilizers.
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Customers are being advised to fit in additional security devices on their vehicles which include audio alarm locks, gear locks and steering locks. Tracking devices installed on vehicles can often help locate a stolen vehicle and could be crucial as well. As for engine immobilizers, it may not be possible to retro-fit older vehicles with this.