What burglary techniques do burglars use to loot vans?

What burglary techniques do burglars use to loot vans?
When you pay 30,000 euros (or more) for a van, you can expect it to be well secured, right? Nothing could be further from the truth! A van's standard locks are easy for burglars to force. Every day, contractors are victims of burglary. Even the latest commercial vans can be opened in less than a minute. How do burglars do this? And more importantly how can you prevent burglary in your van?

How does a burglar break into your van?

If you want to prevent burglary in your van, you first need to know how burglars get your van open. We list the most common burglary techniques:

1. Forcing the lock

With a set of pliers, the standard lock of the latest vans can be opened in no time. A man from England made a video of this to warn other van owners. In less than a minute, he shows how he forces the lock and opens the van doors.

2. Capturing car key code

These days, most vans have a remote control car key that allows you to lock and open your van securely. At least, that's what you think. Unfortunately, this makes your van easy to hack. Every time you press the car key to open or close your van, the key sends a code to your van. With a €40 radio receiver, a burglar can capture this code. The captured codes are used to predict the next code. Using a transmitter, the burglar can then easily open your bus or ensure that the signal from your key never reaches your bus and thus does not lock it. Your alarm system can also be turned off this way.

3. Relay attack method

The latest vans are often equipped with a keyless start system. An electronic transmitter that lets you open the van automatically (from your pocket) and start it at the push of a button. Very convenient but prone to hacking. Vans with a keyless start system are increasingly being opened with a so-called "relay attack". That means a burglar captures the signal from your smartkey with a smart computer, amplifies it and sends it to someone standing close to your van with a transmitter. Your van thinks the real key is nearby and opens the doors. In the process, there is no trace of break-in damage, so the insurance company will not pay out anything either.

Electronic car key hacking van

How to prevent burglary in your van?

So with these burglary methods in mind, it is important to always check that your van is really locked by checking the door. For those who have a keyless key, always keep it in a metal case, locker or tin. This will prevent the key card from being hacked. The metal acts as a Faraday cage where electric fields do not penetrate. This will prevent thieves from robbing your van without burglary damage and the insurance will not pay out anything.

Security lock van

You easily mount a security lock on the side or rear doors of your van. Such an extra lock, also known as an anti-burglar lock, is often very strong, making it practically impossible for burglars to break in. On top of this, a security lock also deters burglars, making them more likely to leave your van to continue looking for a van without a lock. 

Additional measures against burglary in your van

To prevent burglary in your van, an additional alarm system is advised. But even these can be hacked. If you really want to prevent burglary in your van, it is better to opt for a non-electronic solution, such as an additional lock or latch. An extra security lock (like Gatelock) on the doors of your van makes it practically impossible to break in and also deters burglars.

What van lock is most suitable?

Want to know which lock is most suitable for your van? Check out our article on what types of van security locks are available