Deadlocks and latches

After our daughter recently lost her house keys I looked at changing the locks but discovered that it is quite easy to buy master keys on Ebay for many of the popular locks. A consumer test in America found that only one brand of deadlocks/latches passed the test, one that isn’t sold in Australia. What are the best locks for home security?

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Hi @activgraphics,

I’m interested in looking into this a bit further. Could you post a link to some of the eBay sales you mentioned?

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It is probably over a month since I was looking and can’t find it in my history but this is the sort of thing I was looking at:

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If this product is, in fact, capable of picking most locks in Australia - that’s terrifying! This seems to be a simple, yet huge, design floor that puts many people’s security at risk.

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These are ‘bump keys’ not master keys. Master keys are legit and used in commercial situations where the owner is responsible for a wide range of locks. For example, in offices where each desk or filing cabinet may have the same type of lock, each with a unique key number (look at the number printed into the lock and key). _In some circumstance_s it MAY_ be possible for the owner to get a master key which will open all the desk drawers or filing cabinets.

Bump keys are a system of opening (breaking into) locks for which there is no legitimate key available. It is illegal to do this to locks on property which is not owned by the person doing the breaking in.

There are certainly locks which are resistant to bumping, and picking. Talk to a licensed locksmith to find out more, or just do an internet search, but be prepared to pay way more for these locks.

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You are right - “bump” keys are essentially a lockpicking tool and I believe take a certain amount of practice to use effectively. Like other lockpicking tools, they have been available for legitimate purposes (i.e. to locksmiths) for a long time. Inevitably I guess some criminals will use them too.

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This thread started with the question: "What are the best locks for home security?"

someone added:"There are certainly locks which are resistant to bumping, and picking."

The question remains: Which locks are [more] resistant to bumping and picking for better home security?

Look for locks which are ANSI Grade 1 certified. Go to your locksmith for them and expect to pay a lot more than for normal Grade 3 home locks. Grade 2 is in between and may suffice.

Be aware that most thieves are not going to take the time or effort to pick your locks, they will more likely look for an easy entry through an open door or window. If very keen they will smash a window or kick the door in.

If they were really knowledgeable thieves using Grade 1 would be advertising that you have valuables and make you a more attractive target?

PS if you want to know more do an internet search for >ANSI Grade 1 lock< and limit your search to Australia. You will find info from locksmiths as well as manufacturers who make Grade 1 locks in Australia.

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An acquaintance paid a qualified professional locksmith to rekey all doors in a house. It was not cheap!

A person with a cheap lock pick kit bought off ebay (there are kits for $15 to $75 today) was able to pick the locks in under 60 seconds, no training and virtually no prior experience except the instructions that came with the kit.

Hmmm… I’m guessing @PhilT that the locksmith kept the old barrels which were there and just re-pinned them to a new key when they [quote=“TheBBG, post:9, topic:9932”]
rekey all doors

They were probably the standard type of lock (probably ungraded) that can easily be picked. Rekeying doesn’t make them any more secure.

Absolutely. You do not always get what you pay for.

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