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Appeal for witnesses following Theft of BMW car

Thames Valley Police is appealing for witnesses and information following the recent theft of a blue BMW 535D saloon car from the owner’s private driveway in Linkway, Crowthorne. The car was stolen overnight, between Thursday 9 and Friday 10 November. 

A picture of a similar car is attached.

The car having been left locked and secure it is believed to have been stolen by individuals utilising WiFi technology to override the lock & ignition technology. 

If you saw or heard anything suspicious in the vicinity during the night,

Or if you have CCTV, Camera doorbell or Dashcam recordings of suspicious individuals, vehicles or activity you are asked to notify the police, Quoting  crime ref 43230505678.


As always a report can be submitted at any time of day direct to police, on line via www.thamesvalley.police.uk,  or by phoning 101.

If you wish to remain anonymous you can pass information via the independent charity “Crimestoppers” by phoning 0800 555 111 or via their own website. 


Crime prevention Advice

Opportunist vehicle crime is preventable, you simply need to ensure you close windows and lock your car doors whenever you leave it. Unfortunately though some relatively common makes and models of cars are targeted by organised criminal groups, often as they are worth more to criminals and easier to dispose of as parts rather than as an actual car.


Increasingly modern cars that have keyless entry and ignition systems are proving to be a particular target, as thieves can utilise electronic devices to copy and mimic the vehicle’s actual key in order to get into and start a car without causing any damage.


Keyless entry and ignition works by the vehicle's key fob constantly transmitting an electronic signal which can be picked up by a receiver in the car when the two get close to each other. To break the link you simply have to move the key far enough away from the car.
When at home be mindful that your key’s signal can be detected through doors, windows and in some cases even through a house wall.


A simple way of preventing your key’s signal leaking out and been picked up by a thief is to store your key in a tin. If you would want a more attractive solution there are specially made boxes or pouches to put the key in when not driving.


Worryingly there also appears to be an increasing number of high spec vehicles with electronics that are computer controlled which appear to be vulnerable to thieves who have acquired computer apps that enable them to hack the cars electronics in order to gain entry and activate the ignition. Because of these potential vulnerabilities Police recommend that when provided owners fully utilise the manufacturers security systems, possibly as simple as ensuring a PIN code is entered, so that like a bank ATM card or home Wi-Fi it can’t be used by anyone who doesn’t know the security number.


Police also recommend owners of such cars also consider utilising tried and tested forms of physical security


Examples are; 

·        An overt wheel clamp or Steering lock – either of which are readily available at motorist stores

·        A concealed “kill switch” to prevent the engine from starting – a relatively easy installation

·        Installing a rising/ folding security bollard to block your driveway

·        Parking so your car is blocked in my other vehicles



 In addition to these measures having your driveway or parking space covered by motion activated lighting and good quality CCTV will be a deterrent.


For more advice on how to keep your vehicle safe, visit the Thames Valley Police website; www.thamesvalley.police.uk


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Message Sent By
Jon Morris
(Police, Neighbourhood Administrator, Bracknell & Wokingham)

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