Inside the U.S. alone, there are almost 3 million homes broken into every year. Most of us take precautions against a break-in with the best front door hardware that we can find but, unfortunately, those locks do not provide a guaranteed line of offense against a break-in. Hinges can be broken, bolts can be cut, and locks can be picked. Now, it is easier than ever for burglars to open key locks without the actual key, simply by using a bump key.
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What Is A Bump Key?
A bump key is a key that has been made to easily override the locking mechanism of a lock. It can be made within minutes using a file on an old or uncut key, and it takes seconds to bypass the locking mechanism in the lock. It can fit into any key lock and it doesn’t take any brains to be able to use it, which means all kinds of criminals are carrying bump keys on them at all times.
The truth is that even a 12 year old could use a bump key with practice, and no signs of forced entry would be noticed by you. This means that someone could easily come and go while you are out or sleeping without your knowledge. Using a bump key is a process known as lock bumping, and experts say that lock bumping can be used on almost 90% of homes.
How Does A Bump Key Work?
Inside of a key lock there is an inner part that turns and an outer part that stays still. There are also two rows of pins that meet together at various heights inside of the lock. When the lock is locked, those pins meet together below the intersection where the inner and outer lock meet, which provides resistance against turning the lock. However, when the key is inserted into the lock, it pushes up the pins to create an even horizontal line (where the inner and outer lock meet) between all pins in both sets. At this point, there is no resistance between the inner and outer mechanisms, and the inner part of the lock can easily be turned to open the door.
A bump key uses the knowledge of how pins work. The key is cut with similar sized teeth from start to finish, instead of the various sizes of teeth you see on regular keys, and then inserted into the key lock almost all the way. A blunt object is then used to bump the key into the lock which strikes force against all the pins at once causing the top row to bump above the intersection where the inner and outer part of the lock meet, allowing a brief moment that the lock can be turned with no resistance. Constant pressure on one side of the bump key ensures that it is able to turn at exactly the right moment when the pins move above that intersection.
Everyone Can Learn To Use These
Locking picking used to be something for people who had experience or locksmith tools, but now even a 12-year-old can learn to use a bump key. Type is ‘what is a bump key’ and you will find instructional videos on how to make and use the key all over the Internet. An old key and a file is all that is needed to create the perfect bump key for any key lock. The more coverage these bump keys get on the news brings more awareness to criminals, and the ease of use is very appealing to anyone who has the intention of breaking into a home.
What Can You Do To Prevent Lock Bumping?
You do need to worry about lock bumping. Because so many homes are at risk of burglaries, you and your family could be injured or killed during a burglary gone wrong.
You may want to install lights around your main doors to deter criminals from using bump keys and being seen. However, the fact that bump keys work within seconds may outweigh the risk of being seen for most criminals.
Having a loud barking dog is a great way to scare a criminal off before they attempt to break in. However, the dog must be able to react the moment the burglar approaches the door or else they will quickly open the door and put your dog at risk for injury or escape. This approach should only be used with alert, large dogs who are capable of making anyone think twice about breaking in.
Installing an alarm will also help deter burglars from proceeding into your house after they get the door open; however, it will not stop them from getting the door open in the first place.
You can also buy The Lock Locker, which prevents your dead bolt from being turned no matter how strong the burglar is. This is the best prevention against lock bumping if your locks are susceptible to it. The burglar who uses bump keys is not planning on standing on the porch for minutes trying to open the door, and the inability to turn the lock will have them retreating from your home very quickly. Ensure you have The Lock Locker on every door in your home for maximum security.