How Not to Lose Your Keys in 2022

Losing your keys is one of the last things that you want to happen in everyday life; you might be locked out of your car, running late to an appointment or caught out in the rain, which undoubtedly, would have a negative impact on your day. However, there is a silver lining to this situation, as like most things it can be avoided. Make sure you never lose your car keys again through some nifty gadgets and helpful tips below!

If you have lost your house keys and are in need of a locksmith, we can help. 

If your car keys are lost stolen or damaged we can get an auto locksmith to you.

Can keys be tracked?

Most key fobs do not hold within them the technology to track them; however you can get some great gadgets that will allow you to track your keys. These devices can often be attached to your key ring and be activated and tracked through an app on your phone.

 

Is there an app to find lost keys?

Some tracking devices, such as the Amazon Tile work with an app on your phone that will allow you to locate the most recent location that your valuable has been pinpointed in and if in range will allow you to send a push to sound an alarm on the device attached to your valuable. Make sure you never lose your keys again with Tile!

 

What is the best tracking device for keys?

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Our top pick for a key finder device is the Amazon Tile.

This nifty gadget can attach to just about anything; your key ring, your backpack and even your purse! Using the smartphone app, you can locate any nearby valuable that you might have misplaced by the Tile Mate playing a loud tune to help you find it one prompted.

But what if your missing valuable is out of range? Have no fear, the Tile Mate tracked and pinpoints previous locations so you will be able to see where it was last pinpointed, but it doesn’t stop there. Through the extensive Tile community you can report an item missing on the app and if it is close to one of the over 5 Million Tile users can report its location to help you find it. Likewise, should you lose your phone, simply double tap the Tile button on any Tile device to make your phone ring, even on silent.

However, what is probably the best feature is that it is compatible with Alexa, so should you lose your keys down the back of the sofa, you can simple ask Alexa to find your keys activating the loud tune from your Tile device.

With 3 ways of securing your valuables, through adhesive dots; allowing even items such as your camera to be secure, the thread Tiles; which can threaded onto just about anything, or the slimline card version; allowing for it to be discreetly slid into your purse or wallet, whatever possession you would like secure there is a version that will fit you!

Buy the Essentials Combo on Amazon for £67.99, which includes 2x Adhesive Tiles, 1x Thread Tile and a Slimline Tile.

 

What is the best budget tracking device for keys?

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If you don’t want to spend quite as much for the Amazon Tile but still want all of the great features then the TrackR Pixel is a very agreeable second.

With many of the same features as the Amazon Tile with the added bonus of being able to see the last several places that were identified and not just the last one, giving you more options to search should you lose something out and about. Another great feature of this device is the light up LED alongside the activated sound; this means that you’ll be able to find your keys in a flash.

For the more than affordable price of £17.99 from Amazon, will provide you with 3 tracking devices in 3 different colours.

 

Best Alternative Tracking Device

Chipolo One has a history of producing trackers with very loud alarms; this makes it easier to find anything you have lost. It has a reasonable range of 40-50 feet and a nifty feature is that it will buzz if you go out of range of your keys (phone/wallet), meaning it will prevent you from leaving them anywhere. Unlike the Tile these extra features are included in the price, so there are no extra fees. The Chipolo One is best used when looking for your keys in your home and at £21 it’s a cheaper alternative to the Tile.

 

Most Stylish Key Finder

The Orbit Key Finder has a stunning brushed aluminium finish and you can choose from 12 colours making it a great choice for those looking to keep their keyring stylish. It does alert you if you stray too far from your keys, but the range isn’t great. Once you lose the connection with your phone app, it’s very hard to re-establish, so if you are looking for your keys in a hurry, that will be a hindrance. You can replace the battery, but you will need a plastic tool that comes with the Orbit to swap out the battery, unlike the Tile, which you just slide the back off to access.

5 Top Tips on How Not to Lose your Keys

 

1. Give your Keys a Home

Setting aside a set place for your keys will help to stop misplacing them when at home. A bowl or a set of hooks on the wall are easy places that you can throw your keys on when you get home. So when you get that sudden rush of panic ‘where are my keys’, you know that you would have put them in their designated space.

However, do keep in mind this space should be kept away from any windows to avoid ‘key fishing’, from burglars who may notice them when walking by.

 

2. Make Them Glow

Specialist luminescent paint will make anything you paint glow in the dark! Try painting one of your own keys, so if you’re searching in the dark you can easily spot them, with the added benefit that you can easily identify them in the day as well.  

If you rent a property, make sure that you don’t paint a key that isn’t yours as your landlord might not take kindly to painting their key, in this case try painting a bike lock key or another item on your key ring.

 

3. Big, Bold Keyrings

Decorative keyrings can be your best friend as they can make your keys easier to find at the bottom of your bag or when searching around the house, but they also make them easily identifiable. If you were to lose your keys, you could speak to someone of authority in the area you have lost them. Talk to a police officer or a shop manager, and enquire as to whether a set of keys has been handed in. If they have you can easily describe and identify them as yours by the unique and bold key rings you have. Click here for top reviewed keyrings you can’t lose!

 

4. Carry them in Secure Pockets

The most common way that your keys are stolen is through open pockets and bags. An expert thief would be able to grab something from your pocket or bag without you knowing in seconds. To prevent this make sure you put your keys in a pocket that is closed by a popper or zip and keys that are in your bags should be in an internal zipped compartment. This will reduce your risk of losing your keys through pick-pocketing.

 

5. Invest in a Bluetooth Key Finder

Unfortunately we are all bound to lose our keys at one point or another, however by investing in one of the products we have listed or even another one you have found that’s right for you can save you stress and time.

These products can help you find your keys faster and with more ease than ever before, so if you did lose your keys you’d be thankful you invested in a finder.

 

One of the most common and aggravating mishaps is simply losing your keys. Key loss can happen due to different reasons not just them being stolen, misplacing your keys or accidentally dropping them under your couch could all result in key loss. It’s even considered as one of the most common lost objects between people. Therefore, don’t panic and waste time blaming yourself and follow the steps provided above to avoid losing your keys again!

Top Locksmiths FAQs

We have created our top FAQs based on what our customers ask us on a day to day basis. This guide will give you all the answers to the most commonly asked questions that you might ask when you need a Locksmith on the double.

How Quickly Can you Get Out to Me?

The type of job can affect the response time of a Locksmith due to its urgency. However, we here at Keytek® have an emergency response time of 30-60 minutes, where possible, and for non-emergency cases will always try to get out to you within 1-2 hours.

Do you Have a Call out Charge?

Some Locksmiths will charge for call outs, some don’t. But we here at Keytek® Locksmiths we don’t have a call out charge, we only charge for Labour (the time on site) plus parts if they are needed plus VAT.

Find out more about our pricing here!

Can you Gain Access without Needing to Replace the Lock?

In the majority of cases, you can gain entry to a property without having to replace the lock. Most locks, including uPVC and wooden locks, can be bypassed by picking or other non-destructive entry techniques with relative ease when carried out by an expert Locksmith.

Our Locksmiths at Keytek® will always prioritize non-destructive entry techniques to help you gain access to your property and as experts with both uPVC and wooden locks and mechanisms can easily bypass locks to get you in as quick as possible. In some rare cases, it may be necessary to replace the lock, but this will depend on the circumstances of the lock out and the lock itself.

How Much will the Parts Cost?

Factors such as door type and lock type will affect the cost of any parts required when hiring a Locksmith and the price you can be charged will differ from company to company. For example, the cost for a new lock on a uPVC door will change dependent on size, make, model, and the level of security it holds as there are different standards of locks. See below for a brief overview of potential costs for parts.

Door TypeLock TypePrice Estimate*
WoodenYale Cylinder ReplacementFrom £119+
WoodenComplete Yale ReplacementFrom £140+
WoodenMortice Lock Replacement (5 Lever)From £125+
WoodenMortice Lock Replacement (2-3 Lever)From £145+
uPVCStandard Cylinder ReplacementFrom £125+
uPVCHigh Security Cylinder ReplacementFrom £150+
uPVCMulti-Point Locking MechanismFrom £220+

*These prices can vary and are only estimates. The exact cost of the lock will depend on size, make, and model.

For a detailed and expansive overview of the costs of hiring a Locksmith, head over to our Locksmith Prices page.

How Many Keys will Come with a Replacement Lock?

Each lock will differ with the number of keys that it comes with, but you should expect to get 2-3 new keys with the installation of a new door lock by an expert Locksmith. Again, it is always best to check the number of the keys with your Locksmith in case you will need extra copies.

Does the Work Come with a Guarantee?

All work carried out by a Keytek® Locksmith, including any parts supplied comes with a year guarantee.  Any professional Locksmith should give you a variation of a guarantee to ensure that all work is completed correctly.

Are your Prices Fixed or Estimated?

Locksmith jobs vary significantly, for example burglary repair could cost more than a lock replacement, so different parts can hold different prices which will then impact the overall price of the job. With the different parts needed and time needed to be spent on job, most Locksmiths will provide you will an estimate upon booking in.

Do I need a Locksmith to Change Locks?

Many customers get confused when it comes to changing locks, whether they should go down the DIY route or call a Locksmith. It’s always a risk to do something you are not specialised in as it can cost you a lot more in the long run if it failed and could even invalidate your home insurance. Therefore, it’s always wise to call out a Locksmith.

How Will I be Able to Pay?

Most Locksmith companies will take both card and cash payments. Some Locksmiths will be limited to only accepting cash while others can only accept cards. It’s important to ask what form of payment your Locksmith accepts before you hire them..

Keytek® Locksmiths

Keytek® Locksmiths are the largest Locksmith community providing local emergency Locksmith services across the UK… no matter where you are we have a local mobile Engineer servicing your area!

Best Anti-Snap Door Locks

What is Lock Snapping?

Lock snapping is a method, which is being used more and more by burglars, that renders a euro lock useless. Burglars use this technique of breaking or ‘snapping’ the cylinder of a lock to gain access to the inner mechanism, this then allows them to tamper with the inner mechanism and gain entry to your home. Since the number of properties in the UK with a euro lock has grown, so has the ‘lock snapping’ method of burglary.

Why is Lock Snapping Used?

It’s not common knowledge that the cylinder is the most vulnerable part of your lock. This is because when tempered with or broken, your multipoint lock can become useless. The problem with lock snapping is that it doesn’t take much skill and even the most inexperienced burglar can do it. All it takes is a pair of plyers and the right amount of force on a certain point of your lock and the mechanism is exposed.

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How Do I Protect My Home Against Locks Snapping?

One way to protect you home against lock snapping is to install an ‘Anti-Snap’ lock. So, what are anti snap locks? These locks have been designed specifically to stop these kinds of break-ins from happening. Manufacturers have designed these locks to snap in a certain place when under attack, by breaking in this designated place, the mechanism cannot be exposed. This model can stop a burglar entering your home through lock snapping, but you will need to replace the lock once it’s been snapped.

Best Anti Snap Locks UK

There are many different types of Anti-Snap locks on the market, so below we will take you through the main contenders, so you can learn what you need to consider when buying an Anti-Snap lock.

1.     British Standard

A lock will only bare the ‘British Standard’ kite mark, once it has met the standards of manufacturing set by the BSI (British Standard Institute). It’s not uncommon that most insurance companies will specify that you must only use British Standard Locks to comply with their guidelines. The British Standard Kite mark is widely regarded as a sign of high quality and reliability, any lock that bares this mark can be trusted to be secure.

If you are thinking of using an anti-snap lock then the British Standard is the ‘TS007:2012’. A TS007 will protect your locks from various methods of attack such as: drilling, picking, and bumping in addition to lock snapping. An anti-snap lock baring the British Standard kite mark can protect you from these types of attack. It is advisable, however, to keep yourself updated on other ways to protect your home, it’s best not to rely on just one form of protection. It’s true that every TS007 is high quality, but there are 3 levels of security within it. We recommend looking into what makes a lock 3 star rated and the differences between 1 star and 3 star, before choosing a lock for your home.

TS007 Star Rating Explained

 1 Star Rating

For a cylinder to achieve this rating it is tested in the manner equivalent to the BS 3621:2007 and the minimum requirements of BS EN 1303:2005.

 2 Star Rating

For security hardware to receive a two star rating the protection offered by the hardware to the cylinder is tested in the manner equivalent to the PAS 24 test. In addition, where possible, the hardware’ durability and corrosion resistance are tested in accordance with the European handle standard EN 1906:2010.

3 Star Rating

For a cylinder to receive three stars, it must meet the requirements of the one star cylinder and also withstand an attack similar to the PAS 24 cylinder test without the benefit of any protective hardware. The 3 star TS007 British Standard is an anti snap, anti bump compliant!

Find out even more about British Standard here.

2.     Sold Secure Diamond Standard

Another trust signal you can look out for, which guarantees the secureness of a lock is the ‘sold secure’ sign. This means the lock has been tested and vetted by Sold Secure, a testing a certification house.

SS312 Diamond Standard was started in 2010 and is in a state of constant growth and development. The checks and test are updated constantly to make sure the locks can withstand new and more sophisticated attacks. One of these tests is the resistance to lock snapping, which it passes.

3.     Yale Anti-Snap Locks

There’s no doubting that you’ve heard of Yale locks, they are the biggest name in the lock industry and have been around for hundreds of years. With this amount of experience and years of producing reliable locks, you can trust that their locks are of a high quality. Yale state on their website;

Whereas previously Yale AS Series cylinders were approved by Sold Secure SS312 Diamond Standard, we have moved away from this standard and focused all our development activities on the latest British Kitemark standard TS007. Homeowners throughout the UK recognize the Kitemark logo as a symbol of product quality and performance. Yale KM, AS and AS Platinum Series cylinders are all approved to TS007.”

So, if you have confidence in the British Standard Kite Mark or your insurance policy states that your locks should be British Standard, then a Yale lock is a good product to go for.

This means that if your insurance requires a British Standard Kitemark and it’s something you put your trust in, then a Yale Lock might be the one for you. Yale euro cylinders are insurance approved and have anti-snap, anti-bump, and kitemarked features to provide additional protection.

4.     ERA Invincible Locks

If you are looking for another well-known brand to go with, then you should look at ERA. They have been designing and producing high quality locks for over 175 years. They are known for innovation and pushing the industry into new ideas. They specialise in window and door security and have started focusing on smart home solutions.

The ERA doesn’t rely on the Sold Standard or British Standard to grade their locks, or give them a quality rating. They have their own test centre that is approved by UKAS. This means they are approved to independently vet locks to a ‘gold standard’ of PAS 24:2012.

Their solution to the lock-snapping problem is to design a euro lock that has a unique shape. The ‘Invincible Cylinder’ reinforces the central fixing hole with 5 times more material than a standard euro cylinder. According to the ERA website the ‘Invincible Cylinder’ boasts many security features including;

  • Reinforced with five times more metal than a standard cylinder lock.

  • 6 hardened high security pins for the ultimate anti-pick, anti-drill and anti-bump resistance

  • Robust shape is a strong visual deterrent to would be thieves

  • Independently tested to meet the latest security standards: British Standard Kitemark (TS007), Sold Secure Diamond and the police‘s Secured By Design accreditation

What makes the ERA locks different to other anti-snap locks is that whereas traditionally other anti-snaps locks are designed to snap in a certain place with being tampered with, the ERA locks are designed to not break at all. The purpose of this is to give the euro lock a ‘fighting chance’ against intruders, the benefit of this is that even if there is an attempted break in using lock snapping, you won’t have to replace your lock.

5.     Mul-t-lock Integrator Break Secure XP+

Established over 40 years ago, Mul-T-Lock has been developing and manufacturing high security locking products for commercial, industrial, and residential applications.

Their contribution to the anti-snap market is the Mul-t-lock Integrator Break Secure XP+. It’s the first cylinder on the market to achieve a three-star Kitemark accreditation without the need for a high security handle. The Mul-t-lock Integrator Break Secure XP+ comes with a reinforced bar that advances the cylinders protection and resistance to lock snapping. It also features 2 grip deflectors, which makes it difficult for any tool to actually get a grip on the cylinder in the first place. It is also impossible to copy the keys, unless you have the code, so you don’t have to worry about people copying them. All Mul-T-Lock products comply with the highest international standards, such as; UL, CEN, VDS, SKG, CPC, A2P and ISO 9001/2000, ISO14001, SI 18001.

Choosing an Anti-Snap Lock

So, when it comes to choosing an anti-snap lock, you need to look at the standards the euro cylinders adhere to. Whether it be British Standard or Sold Secure Diamond Standard, you need to check what standard your insurance provider requires you to have. For more information on lock types, click here.

Locksmith Scams

Like most other industries, Locksmithing is not exempt from scammers. The need for a Locksmith is not often a regular occurrence so most can just assume that any Locksmith is safe to use, however this unfortunately this isn’t the case. One of the most recently publicized Locksmith scams was a burglary ring who advertised themselves as a Locksmith service and then went out to place stickers on the home of people who had called for their ‘services’ to mark them for other members in the group as an easy target.

In this blog we discuss some ways in which Locksmith scams present themselves and what you can do to try and protect yourself and your home!

 

Stickers

As mentioned, above burglars can mark your home with fake Locksmith stickers. These are a sign to other members of the burglars’ group to of whom to target.

So, what should you do if you see a sticker like this? Firstly, you need to remove it right away and throw away in a bin that is inside your home. Secondly, you should report it to the non-emergency police line so that they can be aware that this scam is operating in your area.

It’s important to note that a real Locksmith company is very unlikely to cold call on your home and would never place a sticker – a real Locksmith would most likely put a leaflet of their services through your letterbox if this was their style of advertising.

 

Google My Business

We like to think that when searching through local businesses on Google that they are all trustworthy, however this is not always the case. Within the Locksmith industry there are no official regulations which means anyone can advertise as a Locksmith – even if they don’t know what they are doing!

Untrained individuals can pose as a professional Locksmith with a business listing on Google where unexpecting people who are in urgent need of a Locksmith unfortunately call them out. At first, they might quote a reasonable price but whilst on site they can often do more damage than good and then can hit you with a huge bill that is miles away from what a professional Locksmith would charge!

For advice on Locksmith prices view our Locksmith Pricing Guide.

Although Google maps is a great tool for finding local businesses before you make the call look for a few things:

 

  • Is a website linked?

Not all Locksmiths will have one, but it is often a good indicator.

 

  • Do they have any reviews?

Anyone can leave a review for a business on Google but if you have the time read through a few reviews and see what previous customers have said about the business. Our advice would be to avoid business profiles that have no reviews!

 

  • Is there a company name?

Most Locksmiths will have a company name, it may be a brand, or it may just be their name, but we would advise to avoid the ones which are just a variation of Locksmith services.

 

Cash Only Jobs without Receipts

Not being able to take card isn’t uncommon within Locksmithing, as most are mobile Locksmiths working from their vans and not all will have the facilities. However, if a Locksmith is only willing to take cash and will not provide a receipt there may be an issue.

Some scammers will only take cash as it is impossible to trace, and should you make a complaint they could deny they even provided you with services! So, if you are paying with cash make sure that they are providing you with some sort of receipt of the work done.

A reputable and reliable company will issue a receipt with the logo or business name, contact information, and a breakdown of the charges.

 

What Can You do to Avoid a Locksmith Scam?

1.      Research

Researching for reliability is an important step to ensure you are booking a reliable Locksmith. The advert or website should have clear contact information, a company name, a mention of what level the locksmiths are trained to. We also always suggest looking to see if they advertise as a DBS checked Locksmith and if they are linked to companies such as Checkatrade or Which? Trusted Trader.

Another crucial thing to consider is the company’s reviews. So, it’s worth checking out review websites such as Trustpilot or Checkatrade to make sure the company is reliable. If you are searching on Google maps for a Locksmith, it’s worth looking at their reviews on here also.

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2.      Avoid Locksmiths with no Company Name

While some real certified locksmiths may advertise with no name, it’s more likely that they won’t be real companies but scammers. We suggest looking for a company name somewhere on the advert or on the site, it may not be in the title but it should be included.

 

3.      Ask for Credentials

Almost all Locksmith companies will have a van with their logo/branding on it. If the Locksmith arrives with an unbranded vehicle, it’s not necessarily a cause for concern but it’s best to ask for their identification/certification, and if they refuse then you know what to do!

It’s also best to ask for identification even if they have arrived in a branded van to be sure.

 

4.      Confirm prices

It is important to understand charges before booking a Locksmith. A professional Locksmith should always be upfront with their charges and how they breakdown the cost of a job. If the price is too good to be true or seems ridiculously high, there is nothing wrong in getting a second opinion before deciding who to book in with.

A reliable Locksmith company will always be transparent about their costing and whilst might not be able to give you an exact price for parts (if they are needed for the job) they should be transparent through the whole process to avoid any Locksmith ripoff.

 

To conclude, scammers can be present in all industries and will try to find new ways to rip you off . As always, following some steps can always help avoiding any Locksmith scam. Make sure you avoid falling prey to a Locksmith ripoff with the above top tips!

 

About Keytek® Locksmiths!

Keytek® Locksmiths provide a professional, emergency Locksmith service nationwide.  Keytek® is committed to providing a fast and efficient service with highly trained and reliable Engineers. When using a local Keytek®  mobile Locksmith as a customer or business you can expect to receive a 365 day service, a 1 hour emergency response time*, friendly DBS checked Engineers, 12 month parts guarantee, and a highly trained team to handle your call.

Find your local Locksmith here. 

The Best Smart Locks For 2022

The traditional key and lock might soon be phased out through the invention of the increasingly popular smart door lock. It is now possible for you to enter your home with a simple push of a button, a swipe of a card or even your phone!

Here at Keytek® we are taking a look at the best smart door locks you can get that will help you secure your home, protect your valuables and overall make your security more intelligent, prompt and effortless.

 

What are smart door locks?

A smart door lock is an electronic and/or mechanical lock that can open wirelessly with the authorisation of users. Most smart door locks take away the need for a traditional key but rather can grant users entry through their Smartphone or a key fob.

 

Types of smart door locks

The most common mean of entry includes keypads, biometric or Bluetooth.

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)

RFID locks allow for entry by using a key fob or key card; much like the system that is used in hotels.

Bluetooth Enabled Locks

Some locks which can operate using Bluetooth will detect your Smartphone’s Bluetooth ID and can open when you approach.

Keypads and Touch Screens

Early smart door locks used keypads as means of entry, offering the user to set up a unique pin code to gain access. Newer smarts locks have replaced keypads with touch screens with panels instead of buttons, for sleeker design and increased security.

Biometric Entry

Biometric entry smart door locks use fingerprint identification to operate the lock. This is now operating on most current Smartphones. Click here for the best fingerprint door locks in the UK!

 

Are smart door locks really better?

The biggest benefits of smart door locks are that they are configurable and can be more secure than the traditional key and lock. With digital locks they can be changed at any moment, should you think that someone has gained the code for your home or stolen a key fob, you can disconnect, reprogram, or wipe any potential security risk within a matter of minutes. Likewise if you would like to give someone temporary access, you would be able to allow someone access to your home but maintain that you have complete control over who is coming in and out of your home.

However, nothing comes without flaws. Smart door locks aren’t better when it comes to an expert hacker. In fact, most smart locks have at least one vulnerability that exposes them to hacking. Some vulnerable features for the smart locks that put them in risk are the following:

  • The device buzzing
  • Plain text passwords
  • APK files decompiling
  • Replay attacks

Are all smart door locks keyless?

Different models of smart door locks will come with different features. Many of these digital locks come with a manual key override in case of fault or emergency. However, some models have committed completely to being keyless and do not have a keyway.

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Why doesn’t everyone have a smart lock?

Similar to all new technology, it can take a while for people to completely trust in this new type of product. The advantage of the traditional key lock is that you know it is going to work, is going to secure your home and most of all you know how to operate it.

One potential downside there might be with smart door locks is the unknown. What will you do if it doesn’t work, how will I enter my house, can they be hacked to gain entry? These are all questions that someone is bound to have when thinking of making the technological change. However, do keep in mind that as they become more popular, processes and procedures will become more common knowledge.

 

What do you need to consider when buying a smart door lock in 2022?

With the start of the new decade there are some things that you may want to consider whilst you shop around for your new smart lock to make sure it is the best model for you.

How smart is it?

Different versions of smart lock will hold different features; all of which will aim to make your life easier. Before buying a smart lock you should consider what features you would like, for example, you can get models that sense when you are approaching the door so will automatically unlock the door for you.

Replace or Retrofit?

Some models require you to completely replace the mechanism within your door where as others can simply be retro-fitted over your existing lock. Retrofitting models can often be installed without professional help and can take only a few minutes whereas models that require replacing your existing lock will most likely need to be installed by a professional.

Smart Home Integration

The ideal smart lock would be easily paired to other smart home devices such as an Alexa, Google Assistant or Homekit for a fully immersive smart experience. Depending on the model, make and brand of smart lock, you should consider what smart objects you might already have and how you would like for them all to interconnect.

Alternative Entry Means

Some smart door locks will come with a manual key override built into the lock should the keyless technology fail, whereas others may have multiple ways of access for example through keypads, key fobs or a fingerprint system. Having multiple ways of access would mean that should there be an issue with one method of access you would still be able to open your door. When buying your smart lock consider what options you will have should your lock fail and what different options of access each model offers.

 

What are the disadvantages of smart locks?

  1. Hacking

Cyber-attacks occur on a regular basis. If your smart lock is connected to the internet, it is just as vulnerable to hacking as your Wi-Fi. Smart lock manufacturers are beginning to recognise the significance of this and are prioritising cyber-attack resistance. This is one of the reasons to get a name brand smart lock rather than a knockoff cheap one, which leads to the following point, the cost.

  1. Cost

In order to get a good smart lock brand, it will be more expensive than getting a normal traditional lock. It is important to consider how much a suitable smart lock will cost you along with the pros and cons of installing it.

  1. Lost/stolen phone

Have you ever had your phone stolen from you? Or even lost it somewhere and never remembered where it was? Your phone makes a smart lock vulnerable. Because your phone is the key, anyone who has access to it has access to not only your personal information, such as text messages and emails, but also an open door to your entire house.

  1. Batteries

Smart locks, unlike ordinary locks and like any smart device, are battery-powered solutions, and we all know how batteries die. This is one warning to which you should pay close attention. If the smart lock indicates that the battery is low, replace it immediately or risk getting locked out.

 

What are the best smart door locks for 2022?

Best Overall: Schlage Z-Wave Camelot Deadbolt

£214.76 from Amazon

A good smart lock may make a huge difference in terms of securing your property in a safe and advantageous manner. This smart lock provides the highest level of security while also distinguishing the ways in which you can lock and unlock the device. This smart lock does more than just give you a lock. From simple keys and codes to 24/7 remote monitoring and control, the Schlage Z-Wave comes at top of the list and overall best.

The Schlage Z-Wave Camelot Deadbolt is a smart lock that combines the best of old and new in a single unit that is easy to install. The lock can be accessed using a keycode, keys, or remote association, and features a touch screen keypad with an implicit alert. It may be expensive compared to many smart locks, but it is well designed and works very well with wireless remote controlling.

 

Best Price: Kwikset Smartcode

£118.52 from Amazon

If you’re looking for a simple way to secure your home every night, smart locks may appear to be too expensive to consider. Generally, there are a lot of budget-friendly options that will provide you with equal levels of security and comfort as the more expensive options.

If you don’t mind foregoing the advanced accessibility characteristics of more expensive locks, the Kwikset SmartCode deadbolt is an excellent way to add smart security to your home. The lock may be opened with a standard key, a keycode, or a bright key that detects the jolt and opens it. Even though it has an old design which is not favourable by many people, it is durable, affordable, and works best with connectivity.

 

Best Aesthetic: Yale Conexis L1

£185.99 from Amazon

This smart lock is the most attractive and discrete model on our list and with all of the different finishes you are sure to find the right colour to fit within your home. Looking like the regular ‘lift and lock’ handles that are commonly seen on uPVC doors, the Yale Conexis L1 is designed to work with existing multi-point locks by replacing the handle and cylinder of the existing lock. This is one of the best smart locks for uPVC doors!

The general functionality of this lock is basic but effective; with the use of the app or a RFID tag you can easily open the door. And as a massive benefit, Yale have designed RFID tags that can be attached to almost anything such as the back of your phone(should you not want to use the app), your bag or even a watch, meaning that with one swipe of a RFID enhanced item you can gain access to your home. Although no external keyway on the door there is a thumb turn internally for easy locking and unlocking once indoors. A downside to this smart door lock however is that it cannot connect to other smart home objects without the use of a Z-Wave module, this optional module (costing approximately £60) will allow the Conexis L1 to connect a SmartThings system.

In summary, we have now only started to see the wonders that using smart technology can do for us, and the ease that it brings. Not only will smart locks give you complete remote control over your door security but they also can come with a wide range of features such as, smart home integration capabilities and forced entry alarms that give you peace of mind that your home is safe. Make sure you read our smart home guide here to know the best smart locks in the UK for front doors and more!

How to Stay Safe in Nightclubs

With the majority of covid-19 restrictions lifted, the nightclubs of Britain have been able to reopen, much to the delight of young people around the country. While its fantastic news that the country is returning to normal, going back into nightclubs has its risks, and not just because of coronavirus.

 

Drink Spiking

This is unfortunately a practice that targets mostly women. Someone can spike your drink to make you more vulnerable, this could be done as a practical joke, but sometimes the intentions are a lot more sinister, sexual assault for example. Drink spiking is often not reported, so it’s difficult to know the true extent of these events. People often feel too embarrassed to tell anyone if they think their drink has been spiked as it can cause memory loss. Not remembering parts of the night can make it difficult to recall events with any certainty. It can be a very frightening experience and it’s important that you learn to recognise the signs that your drink has been spiked. It’s equally as important that you know how to spot if someone else has been spiked and how to help them.

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What are Drinks Spiked With?

Although you have mostly heard about drinks being spiked with drugs such as Rohypnol, the NHS says that alcohol is actually the most common thing to be used in drink spiking. Shots of alcohol can be added to drinks to make them stronger; this would cause the victim to get drunker more quickly or unexpectedly.

The most commonly known drugs that are used to spike drinks are Rohypnol (roofies) or Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (GHB), these are known as ‘date rape’ drugs. This is because they can sedate or incapacitate victims, so they are easier to assault.

It’s extremely important to know that these ‘date rape drugs’ are mostly colourless, odourless and tasteless, so are very hard to notice. They also leave the body very quickly, which makes them hard to detect on blood or any other medical tests.

 

Symptoms of Drink Spiking

It’s important to know what the symptoms of drink spiking are. They can vary depending on what the drink has been spiked with. Symptoms can include;

  • Lowered inhibitions
  • Loss of balance
  • Visual problems
  • Confusion
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Unconsciousness

Outside factors will affect what symptoms you experience when you’ve had your drink spike; what you’ve been drinking, your size and weight and how much you’ve drank will all cause variations in your symptoms. If your drink has been spiked then you are unlikely to notice seeing as there will be no difference in the taste or colour of your drink. Most date rape drugs will take 15-20 minutes to take effect and the symptoms can last for hours. If you suspect your drink has been spiked and are feeling any symptoms, then get help straight away.

 

Drink Spiking Statistics 2015 – 2019

England and Wales

2,650 reported incidents of drink spiking.

71.6% of victims were women.

75% of victims were between the ages of 18 and 40.

10% of victims were under the age of 18.

15% of victims were over the age of 40.

 

Scotland

137 reported incidents of drink spiking.

81.8% of victims were women.

78% of victims were between the ages of 18 and 40.

There were 2 alleged victims aged under 9.

 

Northern Ireland

53 reported incidents in of drink spiking.

67.9% of victims were women.

82% of victims were between the ages of 18 and 40.

There were 2 victims aged under 18.

 

What to Do if You Think a Friend Has Been Spiked

If your friend is showing any of the symptoms of having their drinks spiked, then there are some things you can do to help. It’s important to tell the bar or club manager or a member of staff such as the bouncer. They should be able to help you get your friend to a safe spot.

Don’t leave your friend alone, if they have been spiked for the purpose of assault, then it’s important they are not on their own at any time. If their condition continues to get worse then you need to call an ambulance, it’s better to be safe than sorry in these situations, so have them seen by a medical professional to make sure everything is ok. It might seems obvious but don’t let them drink any more alcohol, as this can make the symptoms worse.

 

Avoiding Drink Spiking

Drink spiking is NEVER the victim’s fault and whilst you should always look to just have fun when you go out, considering your safety will only help to keep your night a good one. Whilst some Nightclubs have started giving out drink stoppers for the top of bottles to prevent someone being able to drop something into your drink, there are a few things that you can be aware of to avoid getting your drink spiked.

 

How to Avoid Drink Spiking

1.      Always go to the bar with a friend

Two eyes are better than one and when you’re on your own it’s easy to get distracted and unfortunately it only takes a couple of seconds for someone to drop something into your drink. Having a friend with you acts as a guard when you might be reaching over to pay and not thinking about your drink.

 

2.      Cover your drinks

Obviously easier to do if you’re drinking from the bottle than a glass but where you can make sure that your drink is covered. This can be as simple as keeping your thumb over the top of the bottle or holding a glass from the top rather than the side.

 

3.      Don’t accept drinks from strangers

This might seem obvious, but it is still important to consider when out and about. You should always look to purchase your own drink or if you do accept a drink from someone else, make sure it is from someone you trust and that you have watched the bartender make it.

 

4.      Never leave your drink unattended

Once again, seems like pretty obvious advice but even leaving your drinks with friends on a table can be a bit dangerous. People can easily get distracted and might not always be paying attention to your drink.

We suggest finishing your drink before heading to the toilets or the smoking area, or if you do leave your drink just buy a new one once you come back. Obviously apply caution with this and don’t down a full drink.

 

5.      Keep an eye on your drink for changes

Whether it has moved, is now missing the straw has turned a funny colour it wasn’t before or is frizzing, don’t risk taking a sip. Although you don’t want to be paranoid, it is always better to be safe than sorry and it can only take a moment for someone to drop something in your drink.

You can also find testing kits with strips that can detect certain drugs, but these are often unreliable and don’t always work. They also don’t test for every kind of drug and won’t detect any extra alcohol in your drink.

 

References:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-51021314

Home Security Systems

Home security systems are increasing in popularity as they become more accessible to homeowners over the last few years. But what are home security systems? How do home security systems work? And what are the best home security systems on the market for 2021? Find out all of this and more in our blog below!

 

What is a Home Security System?

A home security system is used to protect the home against burglars by using interconnected devices that work through a central control panel that alert the homeowner to a possible intruder when triggered. A home security system is often made up of multiple parts including the following:

 

Control Panel

The control panel is the hub of a home security section and is what connects all the devices and is the device that arms and disarms the security devices. It is often a small device mounted on the wall with a touchpad and can work via pass codes, voice control or wireless key fobs.

 

Outdoor Home Security Cameras

Outdoor security cameras are usually placed to view the entry points on the exterior of the home and can be hooked up to the mains or smart security cameras can be wireless and connected to the internet. Outdoor home security cameras work by providing a continuous live stream footage that can be sent to your home and often include features such as alerts when movement is detected, infrared night vision, two-way audio and storage. Find out more about Outdoor Security Camera’s here!

 

Indoor Security Cameras

Indoor security cameras are also an option for homeowners who are installing a home security system. Much like an outdoor home security camera the indoor cameras provide live streaming and often include features such as notifications sent straight to your smart phone when triggered. Indoor security cameras are often useful if you have pets in the home or if you are unfortunate enough to be burgled to trace the intruders steps which helps you identify what is missing and helps the police with their investigation.

 

Motion Sensors on Windows and Doors

Motion sensors are placed on main entryways such as the front door or on downstairs windows. They detect motion and alert you when triggered.

 

Alarm

Sometimes an additional alarm is required if the control panel does not have one built in. An alarm sets off a loud ringing sound when triggered by the other security devices which not only alerts you to a possible intruder but more often than not scares off the intruder before they get a chance to enter your home a steal your possessions. Some alarms are also connected to the local police and alerts them to a possible break-in when triggered.

 

How do Home Security Systems Work?

Home security systems work using a term called the ‘Internet of Things’ which refers to the interconnectivity between appliances in the home. In this case it applies to the smart home security system working together to provide seamless protection against intruders. Home security systems or smart home security systems provide warning of an intruder when triggered in the form of a loud siren sounding and an alert sent to your smart phone.

 

Best Smart Home Security Systems for 2021

Our top three picks for the best home security systems 2021 are as follows:

 

Hive Smart Home Security

The Hive Smart Home Security System is a great product for those who are new to smart home security systems and are looking for an easy to use home security system with a sleek, understated design. They offer a wide range of features and 5 different packages including a bespoke package to your home via their quiz online so you can choose the best home security package for you. Find out more on their website here.

 

SimpliSafe

SimpliSafe home security systems are another product we love for ease of use. You can simply open up the box and get it running, no tools or experience required. SimpliSafe also offer a few different home security packages so that you can choose one that suits your home and needs. The most basic package ‘The Foundation’ retails for just £200 and includes the hub, control panel, entry sensor and SimpliCam camera which is a great deal. What is really great about SimpliSafe is that there are no contracts. Find out more on their website here.

 

Blink

Blink home security systems are perfect for those who already may have Amazon smart home products as it is an Amazon company. The camera’s start at just £35 and are controlled by Alexa so you can say ‘Alexa show me the front door camera” for example making Blink really affordable if you already have Amazon smart home products in your home. Find out more about Blink on Amazon here.

 

Keytek® Locksmiths

We are dedicated in helping people secure their homes across the UK. If you enjoyed this blog why not check out How to take a Taxi Safely and The Future of Security 2021: Ring Indoor Drone!

 

 

https://www.security.org/home-security-systems/what-is-a-home-security-system/

https://www.safewise.com/home-security-faq/how-do-security-systems-work/