Two surgical face mask-wearing thieves have been linked to two car thefts in north Swindon

The spate has prompted a warning from Wiltshire Police for those with cars that can be opened using a keyless fob.

The force said thieves had struck three times over the past three weeks. 

On Friday, July 24, at around 4am a car was taken from the driveway of a house in Standen Way. 

Those suspected of being responsible have been linked to two other incidents. 

On Friday, July 17, at around 3.30am a car was stolen from outside a house in Garnet Crescent. 

A week later, on Friday, July 24, at around 3.30am two men were seen acting suspiciously around a vehicle in Ensor Close. They were disturbed. 

One man was described by police as white, between 25 and 35 years old, slim build, short, dark hair, with a beard and was wearing a surgical face mask, baseball cap and a dark coat with light coloured jacket with a circular logo on the sleeve.

The second man was described as white, between 20 and 30 years of age, average build, short, light brown hair, clean shaven and was wearing a surgical face mask, a dark coloured hooded top with the hood up and denim jeans, carrying a dark-coloured backpack.

PC Pedro Wiltshire said: “In cases like these, thieves manage to get in to and drive the vehicle off by using a transmitting device which mimics the keyless fob.

“We’d urge vehicle owners about being extra vigilant and aware of this type of crime and where they leave their keys overnight."

Tips for drivers included putting the key card or fob in a Faraday case or pouch to block any transmissions, parking in a locked garage, installing a bollard on the driveway or using a steering lock.

Mr Wiltshire said: “These measures are all about preventing the opportunist thieves and are all fairly cheap and simple measures to stop an offenders.”