Feeling secure in your home is everyone’s desire. Homeowners want to feel confident in their home. Our homes are our castles. A castle is a safe place where we can relax and unwind from the stresses and dangers of the world around us. Unfortunately, the security of our castle may not be as strong as we think. What are we describing? We are talking about something called Lock Bumping.
Lock bumping is not new. Lock Bumping is a technique that originated in its earliest forms by locksmiths in Denmark. Using something called a bump key, a locksmith could open almost any lock. This technique is a problem when you are counting on a lock to provide deterrence from theft or illegal entry into your home.
Here are some interesting facts about lock bumping:
- cylinder locks makeup 90% of the locks in the U.S. and is vulnerable to lock bumping
- bumping one of these locks is so easy a child can do it
With the rise of the internet, anyone can learn to create a bump key and open over 90% of the locks in the USA. In 2002 criminals were getting wind of this technique and using it to access homes. Lucky for us, there are steps you can exercise to prevent lock bumping at your home.
How does lock bumping work?
Lock bumping is the process of creating a bump key that fits a particular lock. A bump key is a key that has ground in a specific way. You would think that someone would need specialized training to create a key like this, but the truth is that you can quickly learn how to create a bump key on YouTube. Once a key has been created, to use it, you insert the key and bump the end of the key with an object until the lock cylinder turns. It’s surprising how many locks are vulnerable to this technique.
How To Prevent Lock Bumping
Lock bumping is a vulnerability to most homes. If you have ever bought locks from a home improvement store, then you more than likely have a lock that is susceptible to lock bumping. So how do you prevent it?
First, the best way to prevent illegal access to your home is to have things in place the deter thieves from even trying. Recommendations include the following:
- Alarm Systems
- Increase Visibility Of All Doors
- Lock Guards
- Bump Proof Locks
Alarm Systems Can Deter Criminals
The goal of an alarm system is to deter criminals from attempting to bump your lock in the first place. In fact, according to a University of UNC Charlotte study, the university interviewed incarcerated criminals and found that 83 percent would try and figure out if an alarm was present before attempting a robbery and 60 percent would move onto easier targets if they found an alarm system. So, having an alarm in your home with visible signage can be a great deterrent.
Criminals Don’t Like Dogs
Second, guard dogs have proven to deter a criminal from even trying to enter a home. Criminals are creatures of habit, and because what they do is risky, homes without dogs are more favorable. Why risk dealing with a guard dog when plenty of other homes are available without them. A KTVB News Article asked 86 burglars if a pet in the house, like a dog, would make them think twice? Most indicated that smaller dogs did not bother them, but if a home had a large, loud dog, most would stay away.
One inmate said;
“Dogs are a deal breaker for me,” said one inmate. “Big breeds, home protectors are the best to keep people out.”
Increasing Your Visibility Can Deter Thieves
Anyone who is breaking the law does not usually want an audience. By clearing obstructions away from your doors, the increased visibility makes any suspicious activity visible to neighbors. Thieves like easy scores, easy targets, so this one step can help deter them.
Lock Guards Can Prevent Lock Bumping
A lock guard is a device that can prevent lock bumping by physically stopping the lock from turning. The only downside is that they work from the inside. A lock guard is not going to work when leaving your home for the day but is a useful security measure when retiring to bed for the night.
Get Better Locks
The final method to prevent lock bumping is to change all your standard locks to ones engineered explicitly to avoid lock bumping. These locks have unique mechanisms that work to protect the lock from turning without the correct key even when bumping occurs.
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