OBD Tamper Terminator™ the latest in fraud detection
Opus Inspection has obtained a provisional patent for the OBD Tamper Terminator™, the latest innovation for fraud detection that for the first time in the I/M industry focuses on fraud caused by motorists.
Since the deployment of Onboard Diagnostic (OBD) systems on vehicles in 1996, enterprising performance enthusiasts have been looking for ways to “improve” performance of their vehicles. One way to achieve a performance improvement is by removing the catalytic converter. In addition to catalyst removal, an oxygen sensor simulator is typically installed to send a false signal to the electronic control unit (ECU) that is within the expected range, which avoids having the MIL illuminate.
Another way to achieve performance improvement is by installing performance chips in a vehicle’s ECU in order to pass an emission inspection. This vehicle tampering method uses the software contained in the performance chips to permanently set OBD test results therby achieving a passing emission inspection result.
Any such tampering with emission control devices is considered a federal offense.
For the first time in the I/M industry, Opus Inspection is now addressing this issue head-on. We are authorized by U.S. EPA to conduct research using tampered vehicles and establish its positive impact on I/M programs and applicability with the MOVES model as it relates to emissions benefit credits.
Implementing this reliable and easily deployed method for detecting OBD tampering provides enforcement agencies with a powerful way to identify such fraud and, as a result, increase emission reduction benefits. The full extent of performance ECU and catalyst tampering is not known today. Anecdotal information and the proliferation of websites selling parts and providing information on this type of tampering indicate that it is done by a significant number of motorists, in particular among certain target groups.
The OBD Tamper Terminator is a system that works by interrogating the vehicle’s ECU with our patent-pending method. Based on analysis of the ECU interrogation, the system can distinguish vehicles that have been tampered from those that have not.
Opus Inspection’s uVID includes complete server side support for this innovative product.