New OnStar tech keeps stolen vehicles from starting

OnStar's Remote Ignition Block prevents stolen vehicles from being restarted once stopped.

OnStar's suite of Stolen Vehicle Assistance services currently includes GPS technology that pinpoints a stolen vehicle's exact location, and Stolen Vehicle Slowdown, which can remotely slow a stolen vehicle to idle speed. Today, OnStar announces Remote Ignition Block, a new tool that will help law enforcement to safely and quickly recover stolen vehicles.

Remote Ignition Block lets an OnStar adviser send a remote signal to a subscriber's stolen vehicle to prevent the vehicle from being restarted once the ignition is turned off. By killing the ignition, OnStar can make sure that the stolen vehicle remains stationary so police can recover it without the need for a dangerous high-speed chase.

The process works like this: First, the OnStar subscriber reports his or her vehicle as stolen to the police and requests stolen vehicle assistance from OnStar. The police confirm to the OnStar adviser that the vehicle is in fact stolen, most likely using a police report number.

Next, the OnStar adviser locates the vehicle using its onboard GPS antenna and sends the Remote Ignition Block to the vehicle. The next time the vehicle is stopped, it will be unable to restart, and the authorities can then pick it up.

OnStar will make Remote Ignition Block available on select GM 2009 and 2010 model year vehicles in the U.S. and Canada.

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