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VIN #, Key SCAM

 
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Old 08 Feb 2005, 01:40 am
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Default VIN #, Key SCAM

I got a heads up e-mail on a new scam where the criminal type writes down your VIN # inside your windshield cheks for dealer ID's on the car (license plate bracket, stickers on the trunk)then goes to the dealer with the number and orders a new key. They wait, pay for the key and then steals the car with no broken glass and no marks on the car!
Now the deal is to tape over the VIN # on the dash to keep the thief from getting the VIN#. I wasn't sure if covering the VIN# was ilegal.
I asked an LAPD officer (my son) and he checked it out for California and came back with..."Not a bad idea. I could find nothing in the vehicle code that idicates you can not cover the VIN. I contacted Showcase Cheverolet and asked what I needed to get replacement keys for my Chevy. That dealership wants picture ID and paperwork (contract, registration, etc)showing my name and the VIN on it to "match it up." So the key is the VIN. If another dealer does not ask for the above information, all that is needed to get keys to your car is the VIN."
Now that is a big dealer in LA. But, what about a small dealer or some bad guy ring that is just getting one make and has an inside at the dealer. I think I'll tape all of mine. [?]
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Old 08 Feb 2005, 01:57 pm
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I think it was NBC's Dateline that did a story on this, they staked out a woman's car in a suburban neighborhood, got the VIN just by looking in the windshield, and went to various places and tested the ability to get a key made.

The scary part was seeing how easy it was to get the key made. Afterwards they knocked on the woman's door, and then proceeded to show her how they could simply get in the car and drive away.

I wonder how PT owners would make out, considering the key in the chip has to be programmed???

SRG


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Old 08 Feb 2005, 02:21 pm
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Any vehicle that has a programmable key SHOULD be better protected. I don't think that the dealer can/will reprogram the key from the VIN. When I had to replace a lost key, the dealer would sell me the key and cut it for me but would not program it unless I bought the car in.
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Old 08 Feb 2005, 02:43 pm
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See:
http://www.snopes.com/crime/warnings/vin.asp

for a discussion on this topic. It can be done, but it isn't as easy as the post implies. And frankly, covering a VIN is silly since most VINs can be found online through state registration records. It isn't at all private.
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Old 08 Feb 2005, 08:37 pm
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They key is worthless with out a dealership coding the SKIM (unless you have the two originals). The only way that we roll around here is that you have to have a key to cut off of, or you have to show proof of ownership and a driver's license to get a key off of the VIN. That is the way 5 star dealers are suppose to operate.
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Old 08 Feb 2005, 10:12 pm
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And in many states, it's illegal to intentionally cover the VIN.
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Old 08 Feb 2005, 10:55 pm
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Hey just get a sunshade like mine and put it on when you park. It's impossible to see the VIN with them on. Or throw a book, mag, or newspaper on the dash over the VIN when you park. That way you are not covering it when you drive. []
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Old 10 Feb 2005, 02:08 am
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I installed a dash cover and, gee it covered up the vin number!
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Old 10 Feb 2005, 03:03 am
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Bigtommy brought to mind a question that I've been wondering about for awhile. "They key is worthless with out a dealership coding the SKIM" Does the keys have some sort of chip in them if they got wet say going into a pool or the ocean would it ruin the key if it got water logged is that possible?[:I] I'm still from the days of geting a key cut at the hardware store for a few bucks. I heard these keys are about $80.00 to replace is that right.
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Old 10 Feb 2005, 03:27 am
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by stirfry

Bigtommy brought to mind a question that I've been wondering about for awhile. "They key is worthless with out a dealership coding the SKIM" Does the keys have some sort of chip in them if they got wet say going into a pool or the ocean would it ruin the key if it got water logged is that possible?[:I] I'm still from the days of geting a key cut at the hardware store for a few bucks. I heard these keys are about $80.00 to replace is that right.
Yup, they have a chip inside, at least the gray thick headed keys. If you have a black thinner headed key then it has no chip. As to the water question ... [:I]. It got soaken wet during a rain storm and had no problem starting my PT up. As for submurging the key ... [:I]
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