Home Industry News QuestGates : forensic key analysis helps bust keyless car theft mysteries

QuestGates : forensic key analysis helps bust keyless car theft mysteries

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The introduction of forensic key analysis and other tools has played a significant role in identifying and proving discrepancies in alleged high-tech motor theft cases, according to leading specialist loss adjuster QuestGates.

Over recent months, over 70% of cases where key analysis has been undertaken revealed some form of anomaly enabling insurers to repudiate the claim.

Gary Woodhall, Director of the QuestGates Motor Division says: “There has been much discussion and debate about so-called keyless entry theft, however, full scrutiny and forensic inspection very often reveals other issues to explain the theft. Close examination of all aspects of a claim will often identify an irregularity in the claimant’s story that the insurer can then work with to reach a decision. We have found the forensic inspection of keys to be a particularly valuable tool in assisting motor insurers to reduce their exposure to fraud risk – particularly when it comes to alleged keyless theft cases – as they no longer have to make assumptions about how a loss took place.”

QuestGates engages the services of forensic locksmiths and court registered expert witnesses to perform in-depth analysis of keys and vehicle security issues to determine whether electronic and mechanical security devices have been compromised such that a vehicle can be started and driven without its proper key.

Some examples of the discrepancies found by forensic inspection to date include:

– The keys presented were not correct for the vehicle concerned

– The level of wear on the keys did not match the use described by the owner or the vehicle’s mileage

– The keys were found to be replacements whereas the insured stated they were originals

– The last use information recorded did not match the version of events provided by the insured

– The key was not functional, however, the insured claimed they remotely locked the vehicle with it

Woodhall concludes: “While the debate on the theft of vehicles without a key continues, we’re focused on deploying whatever technical skills we can to help our motor insurer clients reduce their exposure to fraudulent claims. Our results, in many cases, have allowed insurers sufficient scope to repudiate such claims.”