Protect your BMW as Watchdog reveals Security Issues
Published: 19 September 2012
By Julian Stone Leave a Comment
Updated: 19 September 2012
The latest episode of Watchdog revealed the serious security issues surrounding BMW cars. Make sure you’re aware of these and take steps to protect your valuable car.
According to the Watchdog program, broadcast recently on the BBC, you will no doubt be justifiably alarmed about the statement made by Ann Robinson that a BMW car is the ‘ultimate gift to the car thief’.
She goes on to explain that if you own a BMW car built between 2006 and 2011 that your car is at risk because there is a gaping security problem which means a thief only needs a couple of minutes to steel your car and doesn’t even need your car to do so.
With a BMW car costing up from just short of £17,000 to over £100,000 you no doubt expect the car to have a high level of security. Worryingly many people are waking up to find their car has been stolen.
The issue stems around the communication between the onboard computer and the vehicle key. Basically by buying a device meant to be used by garages and the like, car thieves can take a blank key and very quickly turn it into a key that overrides your car immobiliser and allows it to be driven away.
BMW advised Watchdog that they take security extremely seriously and that all their cars meet all the UK and Global security standards. However no car is completely safe and unsteelable and BMW and other car manufacturers are in a constant battle against increasingly sophisticated criminals.
BMW do say that the problem is not unique to their cars and other manufacturers suffer from similar problems.
On a postive note, BMW are now contacting owners to pick up on this whole issue – you can if you want contact BMW Customer Service on 0800 083 4397.
Meantime car security experts advise people to add extra layers of security to their car to make it harder to steel. A steering wheel lock or wheel lock could for example be used.
Also make sure that you have adequate car insurance place should your car be stolen.
Don’t stop there either, consider also having GAP insurance, or Gap Asset Protection. This basically covers the difference between the market value your insurer will usually pay out and the actual value of your vehicle at the time it was stolen.
ALA is one provider of GAP insurance and ALA’s Managing Director, Simon England, commented: “Since the BBC Watchdog programme aired we suddenly started getting an unusually high amount of enquiries and sales from BMW owners.
“It was only when we started getting the testimonials in from these customers that we realised why!”
MoneyHighStreet comments: “Clearly having spent thousands on a high value car such as a BMW you really don’t want to hear this news about poor security. Clearly BMW are, albeit seemingly late in the day, addressing the issue.
“If you haven’t heard from them there is nothing to stop you contacting them, the sooner you do the sooner you will get peace of mind over your car.
“Taking extra security steps to protect your car and taking out insurance to protect yourself should your car be stolen is very much something you need to do.”