Lock Picking: Everything You Need to Know to Keep Your Home or Office Safe
Lock picking is any business or homeowner’s nightmare. It’s the last thing you want in the back of your mind when your last employee goes home or you lock up your house for what should be a relaxing weekend away. Luckily, with the right security system or locks, you can stop worrying. That’s because nowadays, there are locking solutions that are so pick-resistant that prospective burglars won’t even be tempted to try. While nothing is 100% safe, its pretty safe to say that a burglar would probably want to find a different, easier target.
So, let’s talk about how your FA locksmith in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and surrounding areas can protect your home or workspace from lock pickers right now.
What is lock picking?
Let’s start with the basics:
Lock picking has been around for as long as locks themselves. But as locking technology has become more advanced and lock manufacturers like Schlage, Kwikset, Yale, Baldwin, Medeco and more have done and are doing a lot to improve security, so have the lock picking experts.
So, how do they do it?
Well, most dedicated lock pickers are specialized in pin-and-tumbler locks. These locks are spring-loaded, which means that with pressure and tension applied to the pins in the right order, they can be opened. This is usually done with:
- A hook or rake and a tension wrench
- Knife picks, which can be used for combination locks or padlocks
- Bump keys, which are made to be able to open a variety of locks, just the same as pick tools.
With practice and skill, a lock picker can use their specialized tools to manually push up the pins that are holding the lock in place. A very experienced lock picker, or anyone with a rapid entry pick such as a rake or bump key, can open a lock in a matter of seconds. Its not as easy as you see in the movies, but not that hard either for simple locks. Unfortunately for homeowners and business owners, the internet has given everyone the chance to learn lock picking. In fact, lock picking has become a popular sport, meaning that picking kits are widely available for a variety of different kinds of locks. While most people learn this old technique just for fun, it can sometimes be used for criminal purposes.
Upgrading your hardware
While you can’t remove all of the information on the internet about lock picking, you can upgrade the security on your home or office to lower your risk of a break in with the right lock.
High security locks such as Medeco and Mul-T-Lock – Locks that utilize high security hardware are more expensive, but they can slow down and deter even the most experienced lock pickers. FA Locksmith can install and change all types of residential and commercial locks into high security locks with a new cylinder or completely new lock.
While the people who pick locks for fun may be drawn to the most complicated locks, most burglars aren’t looking for a challenge. Upgrading your hardware can be an effective way to keep your home or office safe from intruders.
Investing in smart solutions
Smart locks have completely revolutionized security by allowing a door to be locked with a keypad or an app. Here are a few ways that they can help protect you against lock picking:
- Many smart locks don’t have anything to pick! A lock picking expert is going to have quite the disappointment when they get to your front door only to see that there’s no way to access the internal cylinder. That said, some smart locks do also have a keyhole, and may still be prone to picking. Most smart locks that do have a keyhole, are just as vulnerable as any other regular lock out there. They are not more secure!
- Smart locks can be outfitted with an alarm system. One of the huge advantages of a smart lock is the alarm system. Lock picking can be quite discreet, but many burglars will opt not to pick a lock that will sound an alert once they’ve opened it.
- Smart security systems often have cameras. Even though lock picking can be done in a very short amount of time, no burglar is fast enough not to be caught on camera. So, they may avoid a home outfitted with a smart security system with video or camera surveillance.
All of this being said, smart locks are not completely protected against attacks. Anything that uses smart technology can theoretically be vulnerable to hacking or interference, which may very well become the modern-day equivalent of traditional lock picking. You’ll want to look for a system that has been tested for cybersecurity and keep a strong password for your Wifi as well.
Other ways that you can prevent break ins
Here are a few final ways that you can lower the risk of your locks being picked:
- Make sure your security system is installed by a locksmith. Even if you’re a DIY enthusiast, we would still recommend that you have a professional locksmith install your security system. FA Locksmith technicians are trained to identify and fix vulnerabilities that lock pickers can exploit.
- Don’t let damage go unaddressed. Whether it’s a lock that doesn’t function well or a smart system with a few bugs, you do not want to ignore any issues with your locks. Call FA Locksmith to come out at the first sign of security failure.
- Make your home or office undesirable for a burglar. Simple improvements like adding more external light or signing up for a neighborhood watch program can make your house less of a target for burglary.
- Rekey your locks when necessary. If you worry that your keys have fallen into the wrong hands, a rekeying of your locks can be a simple way to restore your safety. In addition, it is the safe way to go in case you let one of your employees go recently or moved to a new home.
As you can see, many of these upgrades to your security system are best managed by a professional locksmith. FA Locksmith knows the ins-and-outs of locks better than the burglars, and we’re here to help you protect yourself against lock picking!