Yeah, I agree, it sounds like a terrible idea. I was just looking for some feedback in case someone else has tried it (since it's not my car I don't want to ruin something).
Although I did find this info regarding resetting the immobilizer from http://www.myturbodiesel.com/1...r.htm:
General troubleshooting procedures
1. First, make sure the car battery is charged. A low battery can cause problems with the immobilizer. It also results in low cranking RPM during engine start - this will cause the ECU to prevent fueling.
2. Try another key - you should have a valet key and spare key that also have an immobilizer chip in them. If they work, then you have isolated the problem to the key. Again, there is NO battery for the immo chip, it gets power from the ignition switch transmitter. You can try reprogramming the chip with the procedures linked to below.
3. Check for error codes - scan the car with a VCDS to see if there is a problem with the system and refer to the appropriate procedure below.
4. You can try just leaving the key in the ignition to "ON" but not start for a few minutes. Many people report that the light just goes away after 10 minutes as if nothing ever happened. This and the next solution appear to have something to do with a capacitor discharge or something resetting. It sounds strange but many report that it works.
5. Try disconnecting BOTH negative and positive terminals of the battery. Then touch the cables to each other only, while not attached to the battery. This can reset the immo system. Again, don't touch the cables to the battery, touch them only to each other while both are disconnected from the battery - you don't want to short the battery out. Also step on the brakes - this turns on the brake lights and discharges any stored electricity.
6. Check wiring and plugs at instrument cluster and pickup coil at the ignition switch, there is a chance it could be faulty.