Door Armor for Side Light Doors

sidelightdisplayDoors with side lights present a special challenge. Regular door reinforcements most likely will not work, because of the side light between the door jamb and the frame of the house. To truly fortify the door requires some extra work. But Armor Concepts has you covered.

Click this link to check out their special kit just for doors with side lights. This is the only product on the market I’ve seen that offers this kind of reinforcement for these type of doors.


Now They Can Make Bump Keys with 3D Printers

keybump-inline-lead-660x443According to this article on Tech Crunch, a team has now developed a way to make a bump key with a 3D printer. Worse, they can take a picture of the keyhole to make a bump key for any lock. Having a deadbolt with an obscure keyway won’t protect against this technique at all. Even if yours is the only lock in the world with a particular keyway, they could make a bump key for it based on a simple picture.

The only way to overcome this deficiency is to install a lock that can’t be bumped–like the Abloy Protec2.

ADT Adding Support for IFTTT

ADTlogoFor those unfamiliar with IFTTT, it’s an app that provides automation between different services. Using “recipes,” you can have certain events trigger various tasks. For example, you can create a recipe that monitors your Instagram account and uploads any new pictures to your Dropbox.

Security system companies like ADT and Vivint have been jumping on the home automation bandwagon lately. This means that in addition to alarm systems, they can provide things like smart thermostats and small appliance controls.

Adding IFTTT into the mix, which ADT is apparently doing according to this article from Engadget, would mean that you could have your coffee maker set to start brewing when your smart watch detects that you’re awake. Or that you could have your front door opening when you get home at night trigger your lights to turn on.

This service is only entering beta testing now, but it’ll be interesting to see how it unfolds once it becomes public.

The Problem with Kwikset SmartKey

SmartKeyKwikset came out with their Smartkey technology back in 2008. Essentially, this allows the homeowner to re-key the lock to a different key without having to replace the lock itself. It’s a convenience factor for those times when you lose a key, or if a tenant moves out of a rental property.

But the problem is that the tool used to re-key the lock can also be used by a burglar the same way. In theory, you have to put the original key in the lock to use the re-keying tool. But in reality, there are easy ways to overcome this. A thin piece of metal can be inserted into the keyhole and used to engage the re-keying mechanism.

Worse, a wire can be used to bypass the locking mechanism all together. This gives someone entry to the home without even re-keying the lock.

These locks are extremely insecure, and account for nearly 75% of the locks being sold in this country today. If you have one on your door, I highly recommend changing it out for something much more secure.

Don’t make the burglar’s job easy

Lock your doorsThis point may seem obvious. But remember, the burglar is always going to look for the path of least resistance. If he spots an open window on a vacant home, that alone may be the reason he picks your house. If he can just open the back door, without kicking it in, without resorting to a bump key or picking the lock, his job becomes far easier. And burglars will and do enter homes through windows. So keep them closed, and keep the latches closed. 

Although 95% of the deadbolts in this country can be opened with a bump key, it’s also true that burglars will look for doors without deadbolts. These provide the easiest possible targets. So if you don’t already have them, make sure to install deadbolts in every entry door into your house!

Pick proof and bump proof deadbolt

abloyVery few deadbolt locks on the market are resistant to bump attacks. In fact, if a lock has a standard pin and tumbler mechanism, it can be bumped. Even fewer deadbolts are resistant to lock picking.

But the Abloy Protec2 is one that cannot be bumped or picked.

The reason for this is that it doesn’t use the pin and tumbler found on nearly every commercial deadbolt. Instead, it uses a series of rotating discs. This mechanism provides far greater security.

These locks are not the kind you can find at the big box stores. You’d have to find a locksmith that carries them. But you can buy them online here.

Watch out for those small openings

When I first started improving my home security, I just assumed my basement windows were too small for anyone to fit through. That is, until I watched that video.

The opening that man fits through is the size of a standard piece of paper–8.5 by 11 inches!

The important thing to remember here is that prison bars are spaced roughly 4.75″ apart from each other. If you’ve got a gap any larger than that just assume that there’s someone out there who could fit through it, and act accordingly! For me, this meant some DIY window bars on my basement windows.

(More on that in an upcoming post!)