Car alarm jamming cases on the up

2012-01-26 07:33

Johannesburg - Insurance claims resulting from car jamming incidents in Johannesburg have risen in the past few months, an insurance broker said on Wednesday.

"The number of car jamming incidents in the Johannesburg area has gone up in the past 18 months, and not much can be done to stop the jamming as car remotes are electronic transmitters," Aon South Africa spokeswoman Kate Lellyett said in a statement.

She said exact numbers were not available, but quoted from a newspaper report that 40 cases a week had recently been reported in the Sandton area.


Lellyett said: "It's a challenge to give you a scientific figure as there are a number of insurance products that don't cover this type of loss, so we would not have total reported claims to check against.

"However, on the policies that do cover it we have seen a marked increase, but because of the number of unreported cases it's a challenge to quantify total losses as result," she said.

Car jamming involves blocking car remotes using a household remote because both remotes operate on a 400 megahertz frequency. Criminals prevent the locking action of the car from being activated.

Lellyett said the real defence was to mitigate risk by being aware of the practice and personally checking that car doors were locked.


"Make sure you hear the beep of your alarm system and the audible sound of the locking mechanism. Physically check your doors and boot... Your valuables should be kept in your boot and out of sight," Lellyet added.

"Jamming is being executed by professional gangs and motorists will need to remain vigilant to prevent falling victim to this scam."

On Wednesday morning, The Star newspaper reported that of the 40 cases of theft from vehicles reported in Sandton each week, at least 85% were thefts in which jamming took place.

Aon SA said that with the average cost of a laptop at R10 000 and a lady's handbag at R5000, the costs were substantial, with losses of around R510 000 a week and more than R2 million a month.

Car jamming had significant implications, Lellyett said.

"The reality is that unless there are signs of forcible or violent entry, most insurance policies won't pay out for claims of theft of valuables from your vehicle."

Have you been target by jammers? Share your story in the comments section below.


  • gregbecker - 2012-01-26 13:57

    This is where cars with folding mirrors come in handy. As I lock my car I hear the mirror motors and see the mirrors folding in! We have tested this jamming on several vehicles and so far several of the latest BMW's were immune to this issue as the locking code seems encrypted and unaffected by the operation of a househole gate/garage remote.

  • Zion - 2012-01-26 15:01

    When activating the locking system stand beside the car and make sure the audible alarm sounded and test the doors physically to see if they are locked. If not take our your cell phone and call the cops. When this trash see your phone they will suspect that something went awry and skedaddle.

  • nabeel.iqbal.986 - 2012-11-04 14:19

    Yesterday on durban North beach they used a car jam device on my car, stole my laptop bank card id’s. cell phones cash.and durban beach police is rubbish, they didn’t do anything. even refused to show me security camera footage. We was coming home. i parked my car at north beach police parking, and went for swimming, crooks took everything from my car, North beach police (next to milky lane) refused to let me make any calls,i even asked to have my watch just to give me enough money to make a call & buy a burger for my 5 year old son, R4500 worth watch they offered me R100,but refuse to give just R50 for just to make a call and burger for my son i search under my car seat and found five rand. Made a call to a friend, back in jhb (Nabs jhb)

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