Crooks used to smash their way into cars to steal valuable stuff, but the National Insurance Crime Bureau says a growing number of thieves are breaking in electronically by tricking keyless entry systems. One of the new and a favorite thing these days among the thieves and burglars.

One of the reports says that a Glendale homeowner was a victim this summer when a hooded man in a sweatshirt stole a gun that was in the center console of his car. The vehicle had keyless entry, was parked in the victim’s driveway, and the theft was caught on surveillance video.

The homeowner doesn’t want to be identified. Glendale police think that the way how the crook broke in, indicates that he may have  “Master Key.” During 2014  The National Insurance Crime Bureau, a non-profit organization that investigates vehicle theft trends,  started reporting about keyless systems that thieves increasingly use for burglary.

Electronic hacks still make up only a small percentage of car break-ins because tracking this kind of theft is difficult, said spokesperson Frank Scafidi because the method leaves no evidence to back it up and it’s hard to verify the car was locked in the first place.

Experts have shown at least two ways thieves can hack the radio frequencies used by keyless systems.

Cars that have doors systems based on the proximity of the key-  typically by pressing a button on the door handle with the key fob in their pocket –are the most vulnerable, said Ken Colburn of Data Doctors.

Criminals these days can magnify that signal. So, if you’re home sleeping, your keys are at the front table, and it’s close enough to the front of the house then they can use an amplifier to transmit that signal to your car in the driveway.The electronics need for such a device cost less than 50$.

These are the stats by Police Department for 2017:

• There were 18,262 motor vehicle thefts reported during 2017.

• Motor vehicle theft accounted for 6.1 percent of the total index offenses and 9.2 percent of the property crimes.

• December recorded the highest number with 1,689, while February recorded the lowest with 1,405.

• Autos represented the highest single category of motor vehicle theft with 12,656, or 69.3 percent.

• The total dollar loss amounted to $74,274,547. This includes not only the value of the stolen motor vehicle, but any other personal property reported taken during the incident.

The criminal will always be there with the possibility of getting more control and have fewer accidents in the future. There are extra safety gadgets that can help you with the protection of your vehicle like LoJack, Kill Switch, Baby Monitor, Tire lock and Steering wheel lock.

Kill Switch is hard to install but a thief will not be able to start your car. As for the baby monitor goes, many devices have night vision and audio, and they won’t notice the momentum you can catch thieves on camera. LoJack is a GPS Tracker.