Last week we caught wind of a piece from the Today Show that shows very technically minded thieves stealing cars with a small device. The solenoid, or whatever is used in cars would need to have a driver board, which has constant power running to it.
I did that in the mid 70s putting a 6 watts neon tube pulled from a portable lamp near my CB rtx antenna. A new tool is allowing criminals across the world to break into cars without leaving a trace, and now that device has made its way to Winnipeg.
At first, he thought his wife had left the doors unlocked, but a neighbour told him he had phoned the police early that morning when he heard noise outside.
Thieves can be seen applying a device to a car and then opening the door as if it is unlocked. The device sends an electromagnetic pulse into the vehicle, tricking it into unlocking the door, much like a keyless entry key fob.

My 14 year old Smart City Coupe locks itself after a timeout if the doors haven’t been used after unlock. It will be relock again if you press unlock but you *didn’t open any one of the door*. My Skoda locks automaticaly if i unlock it with the remote and i do not open any door for a certain ammount of time.
That will do exactly nothing to any electronics nearby (except perhaps a brief amount of RFI while you do so).
Most cars that I know of if unlocked with a remote but not entered (door not opened, etc) will relock themselves after a short period of time.
Kia and Hyundai models with the smart key(push button start) will auto lock only if you pressed the unlock button and never opened the door after unlocking. Ford makes cars with outo lock featues, at least for the luxury vehicles, I had a 1995 Lincoln Mark VIII and the doors would auto lock once you stepped out of the car and closed the door.

Modern car thieves have been spotted new generation of devices that seem to be able to unlock many cars instantly by simply being held against the vehicle. The code was fine, but the door lock was a solenoid, and a magnet in the right place… Our baseball-cap wearing friend might just have an electromagnet or a neodymium one.
I'm guessing the reason for the direct contact with the car is because the device has a very low-power transmitter to keep other non-targeted cars from being triggered. I know that some cars have savety-features like if the battery is low, the car opens the doors.

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