Digital Odometer Tampering
- Posted by Hovanes Margarian, Attorney At Law
- Posted in Car scamsGeneral ArticlesHelpful tipsOdometer Fraud
Odometer tampering or odometer rollback is the unlawful practice of concealing the vehicle’s actual mileage reading to be able to sell the car at a higher price. Generally, it was an easy task for some dishonest people to tamper the traditional mechanical odometer. Today, manufacturers have designed digital odometers so that people could not tamper them. But the fact is that nearly every day we can come across with the phenomenon of digital odometer tampering.
More and more cars have been equipped with digital odometers during the last eight years. A digital odometer, once thought about as a luxury element, is now quite a usual part of nearly new cars. In a digital odometer the vehicle’s mileage can be seen on a screen installed in the speedometer panel.
The system is designed in such a way that a hacker may be able to change the figures in the dashboard using a computer, software and system interface. These facilities are not expensive and they are rather easy to get from an appliance shop. These are the things a hacker needs to roll back an odometer mileage in less than 5 minutes.
You will ask: how is it possible to tamper a digital odometer so easily? The thing is that jump-starting, for example, may result in faults in the electrical system of the vehicle. The odometer and fuel reading thus may show incorrect figures. This will need immediate fixing, that’s the reason why the manufacturers have made digital odometer readings so easily changeable.
In the newest cars, the mileage is stored in the car’s central computer. To have access to the data of this computer means being able to “type” whatever figures you want in the dashboard.
You can be aware of digital odometer tampering if you see asterisks or a line of 9’s or unusual characters on the display. These are the warning signs designed by the manufacturers to inform you that there is something wrong with your odometer.
If you have been sold a vehicle with a tampered digital odometer, you can contact Hovanes Margarian who will help you make a claim towards the company selling you the car.