Brampton’s mayor is proposing a pilot program to combat a significant rise in auto thefts that would see free Faraday bags given to residents in the city.
Patrick Brown said that the bags would be distributed to thousands of car owners in five areas of Brampton.
Faraday bags are “inexpensive bags” that car keys can be placed inside to block the radio frequency that emanates from key FOBs, Brown said.
Brown said a Faraday bag “is a $6 item that can protect a $60,000 car from being stolen in less than 60 seconds.”
The city said according to Peel Regional Police, there were 5,811, auto thefts in 2022, up from 3,119 in 2019.
“Car thieves use the vulnerability in the key FOBs to steal cars in under 60 seconds,” city officials said. “The process is called a relay attack.”
“Thieves read the radio frequency of the key FOBs in your house and relay that frequency to your car on the driveway, tricking the car into thinking the key FOB is next to, or in, the car. Because of this vulnerability, keyless ignition vehicles are now the prime targets of car thieves,” officials said.
The city said Brown’s motion will be presented in a committee meeting for debate on Wednesday.
If passed, it will be confirmed at a city council meeting the following Wednesday, Feb. 8.
“Auto theft represents hundreds of millions of dollars of financial loss to Brampton residents and is a major contributing cause of high insurance premiums. It’s time to put the brakes on,” Brown said.