House Robbery Markings

Have you ever seen a strange marking on the side of your house or nearby such as on the curb or on your bin? In recent times there has been much speculation about these signs and symbols being marked by burglars as to which homes to target, wittily dubbed the ‘da pinchi code’.

But is this something to be wary of, what do these signs mean and what should you do if you are worried about being burgled? Read through our blog to answer these questions and more!

 

What are house robbery markings?

House robbery markings or burglar signs are simple line drawings and shapes that are supposedly code for whether or not the house is worth targeting. As well as indicating to other thieves in their ring these shapes reflect the type of people who live in the house, marking them as vulnerable, easy targets such as a single occupant household or elderly occupants.

 

‘Da pinchi code’

The da pinchi code is the name that has been used across social media sites and news stories over the last few years that have claimed to crack the code on burglar markings! The meanings behind the markings are deemed to mean things such as ‘vulnerable occupant’, ‘alarmed house’ and ‘wealthy’.

Recently, there have been new news stories related to the ‘da pinchi code’ which rules out these findings as being burglar code based on police research, instead the meanings of the markings being much more innocent. Check out our image below to see the markings, their supposed meaning and the true meaning behind them.

 

infographic house markings

 

What do burglars use to mark houses?

Chalk is the main material burglars use as it is easily removed and not as noticeable as materials such as spray paint. As well as chalk, burglars mark houses with almost anything they can, it may be a small blob of paint or a piece of string tied around a lamppost!

There was also a stint in 2018 mainly found in Dublin where burglars would place clear tape over the keyholes on the exterior access doors. If the tape is left intact the next day or following they would know the house is currently vacant!

As well as markings, burglars also may disguise themselves as door to door salesmen; this is what we call distraction burglary. They may also post fake Locksmith contact details through your door for example, always do your research before calling trades people to ensure they are legitimate! If you are in need of a trustworthy Locksmith, contact us here!

 

Where are these burglar signs usually located?

The burglar markings are usually left on the property itself but can also be found nearby such as on the bin, pavement, the curb, a lamppost etc.

 

How do robbers pick a house?

Burglars who leave signs on houses or nearby have usually already scoped out the neighbourhood and indicated which house/s is the least risk to burgle. Planned burglaries in these cases more often than not will have had the house watched for a few days to discover who lives in the house and to understand the occupant’s daily schedule, whether they have up to date home security and whether there is anything of value inside the home. Find out further on in this blog how to prevent attracting burglars to your home!

 

How do you know if your house has been marked? What should I do if my house has burglar chalk signs?

So you may have noticed a strange marking on the perimeter of your home or nearby? First of all take a photo of the suspected burglar sign, make a detailed note of its location, when you first noticed it and then wash it away as best as you can.

Next, we recommend that you contact your local council to ensure the markings weren’t left by their employees doing work along the street.

Following on, if not left there by the council contact the police using the non-emergency number, 101. They may advise you to keep an eye on and record suspicious activity in your neighbourhood, including strangers frequently walking up and down the road and looking or photographing yours or your neighbours homes! Talking to your neighbours about this can also indicate whether they have noticed anything strange and you can ask them to keep an eye out moving forward.

Finally, it is strongly recommended that you upgrade your home security to be on the safe side, continue on to see our suggestions.

 

Myth busters

Although you should always be wary of any strange markings that have appeared on your home, over the last couple of years some police forces have found that in actual fact these markings are harmless! Their investigations often conclude that these markings have been used by utility firms and broadband companies to plan upcoming works.

 

How to protect your home against burglars

Here are a few quick tips that you can apply today to secure your home from burglars.

  • Close and lock your windows and doors when leaving your home always, no matter how long or how far you will be gone.

 

  • Don’t leave valuables insight of any windows.

 

 

 

  • If you haven’t already, create or join your neighbourhood watch.

 

Upgrade your home security knowledge with Keytek®

We are dedicated to helping you keep your home secure here at Keytek® which is why we are continually updating our security content on our website. If you were interested in this blog we recommend that you take a look at our Home Security Guide here where we break down home security into sections such as your front door, garden gate, outdoor lights and more.

Already check out our Home Security Guide? Take a look at our blog page here; we aim to upload a new blog for our readers weekly!

 

https://www.abus.com/uk/Guide/Preconceptions-and-myths/Thieves-code
https://www.alarmnewengland.com/blog/how-to-tell-if-burglars-are-casing-your-home
https://www.blakefire-security.co.uk/blog/how-do-burglars-choose-a-house-to-break-into
https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/7405940/secret-burglar-signs-home-robbed/

Motorcycle Security Guide

The Office for National Statistics released that 39,000 motorcycles were stolen between April 2015 and March 2016. This isn’t new news though as thousands of bikes, mopeds and scooters are stolen every year.

With such high statistics it is vital all bike owners secure their property as best they can to prevent the worst from happening. Below we have listed the best products you can use to secure your bike as best as possible.

 

Motorcycle Security Chain and Padlock

A chain and padlock is one of the most common methods of securing your motorcycle but the efforts of putting these on are pointless unless fitted correctly. Here is what you should look out for:

  1. Chain Length – The length of the chain should be as short and as snug to your bike as possible. This will prevent thieves being able to slide bolt cutters over the chain and break it.

 

  1. Link Diameter – The bigger the chain the heavier it is and the harder it is to break.

 

  1. Material – Find chains and padlocks that are resistant to rust, rust weakens the lock and makes it easier to snap and therefore easier to steal.

 

  1. Immovable Object – Attach the chain to a heavy immovable object to prevent thieves just picking the bike up and putting it in the back of a van.

 

  1. Off the Floor – Ensure the padlock is raised from the ground when locking up to make it harder for thieves to smash the lock open.

 

Ground Anchor

A ground anchor is fixed to the floor, wall or even to a van and allows you to attach the motorcycle chain to it. You can either bolt down a ground anchor which will work best on a van or concrete it in to your garage or driveway floor. This prevents thieves being able to lift your bike up and cut the chain off elsewhere.

 

Disc Lock

Disc locks are extremely handy if you leave your bike in public places frequently. It is a small, portable device that can be used in the brake disc. This device is a great added security measure but it should be used in conjunction with a security chain to ensure your bike is as secure as can be.

 

Motorcycle Alarm/ Tracker

These can act as a deterrent for opportunistic thieves but should always be used in conjunction with other security methods such as a security chain. If a thief is tempering with your bike the sound of the alarm will make them think twice in carrying out the crime!

 

Garage Door Defender

If your motorcycle or any other valuable items are stored in your garage it is worth installing a garage door defender. They prevent garage doors from being prised open by thieves who usually use a crow bar to peel the garage door up and off its runners. Not only do they prevent this kind of garage door attack but they are also a great visual deterrent so prevent thieves attempting to open the garage door.

 

Additional Security Tips

 

  • Mark your motorcycle with your VIN (Vehicle Identification Number), vehicle registration and postcode. If your bike were to get stolen this will help the police track it down and help prevent thieves sell parts on.
https://www.locksmiths.co.uk/faq/motorcycle-security-guide/

Are Key Safe’s, Safe?

Do you have a key safe or considering buying one? Key safes are popular amongst the vulnerable who struggle to come to the door when a family member or carer knock the door and so are extremely useful in having a spare key numerous people can access without the need to cut dozens of spare keys that could get lost and end up in the wrong hands.

But how safe are key safes? Take a read through our blog below to discover how to keep your key safe secure!

 

What is a Key Safe, how does a Key Safe work?

A key safe is a strong and durable metal box secured to the wall outside of your home in which to keep your house keys stored safely inside and only accessible with a personal combination code.

 

Types of Key Safe

First and foremost you should only consider buying a key safe that has the police approved Secured by Design logo on them. These key safes have been put through their paces and have been approved to stand rigorous testing.

There are a few designs on the market, the most common being a 3 or 4 wheel combination key safe. Push button key safes are popular due to the ability to create a code from thousands of numerical options, and newer to the market due to the digital age you can now purchase digital key safes that operate through an app on a mobile phone.

 

 

How to Keep your Key Safe Secure

Where you install your key safe is highly important as this can help prevent a thief from targeting it. Follow the pointers below before installing your key safe and how to keep it continually as secure as can be:

  • Out of Sight: Ensure that you cannot see the key safe from the road to prevent chance burglars taking the risk to break into it. You can help conceal your key safe by hiding it behind a pipe, a window box or with a plant for example. It is also worth considering placing it somewhere you can see the safe from your home so that if someone were to try to break into it you would know about it.

 

  • Eye level: Ensure your key safe is not placed at eye level; this will help keep it hidden to those who should not know it is there.

 

 

  • Identifiable: Is the key safe easily identifiable? If so, why not try your hand at some DIY to fix a removable casing over the top of the key safe. You could try to blend this in with the other external boxes on your home such as the gas meter.

 

  • Door location: Following on from the above pointers, you should ensure that the key safe is well hidden and not located within easy sight of the door to prevent burglary.

 

  • Regularly change the code on your key safe to ensure that it cannot be guessed or remembered by those who should no longer know the code, e.g. moving into a home with a key safe installed.

 

 

Fitted Correctly

Remember, your key safe is only secure if it has been fitted correctly. Always check the manufacturers guide or call a professional to help if you need it.

 

Will a Key Safe Invalidate my Home Insurance?

We all know that your claim to your home insurance will become invalid if the intruder used a key to access your home which is why it is vital that you never leave a spare key under the mat or in a plant pot as these are the first places burglars look! But what about if an intruder gained access to your home using a key that was secured inside your key safe?

It is a bit of a grey area with key safes and home insurance, there could be a number of reasons as to why the burglar has access to the keys such as, was the key safe left open and unlocked and did the perpetrator have knowledge of the combination code? All these factors including the home insurance provider’s rules will have a part to play in whether a key safe will invalidate your home insurance.

We suggest that if spare keys are needed to access a vulnerable persons home for example than a key safe is the best way to go. Spare keys can get lost if multiples are cut and end up in the wrong hands and leaving a key under a rock is a big no, no. Please remember a key safe isn’t 100% secure and there is no way to currently 100% secure your home from burglars.

 

Keytek® Locksmiths

For more information on how to keep your home as secure as can be take a look at our other blogs on our website including: ‘How to be Insurance Compliant’ and ‘How not to Lose your Keys in 2020’.

 

https://www.homesecureshop.co.uk/blogs/news/should-i-have-an-outdoor-key-safe?_pos=1&_sid=c5c250dd3&_ss=r
https://www.thurrock.gov.uk/crime-prevention/key-safes
https://www.compareukquotes.com/insurance/home/what-can-invalidate-home-insurance

5 Important Reasons Why You Always Need A Spare Key in 2020

It is surprising that so few people have a spare key and get caught out when they unfortunately get locked out of their house or lose their keys. Having a spare key is essential for homeowners, business owners, auto owners etc. to name just a few.

 

1. Spare Keys help prevent Accidental Lockouts

Lockouts can happen to anyone and at best they are frustrating, so it is best to be prepared for an accidental lockout before one even occurs. Not only does a spare key prevent you wasting your precious time and money it can also help in an emergency, it is not unusual to hear parents panicked on the phone as they’ve accidentally locked their young child inside their home whilst taking the bins out!

All it takes is a split second of absent-mindedness to leave you stranded in a lockout, at Keytek® we aim to be with you within 30 minutes in such emergencies and back inside your home in a matter of minutes.

 

2. What to do when your Key has Snapped

One of the main causes of lockouts is broken keys. Keys are not invincible to time or to the strain that owners put on them day in and day out. Keys can be easily broken when they have been in use for a long time.

If the locks that you use in conjunction with your key are not behaving the way they are intended, then you might be in for a key break. In some cases, you will be able to tell that your key is in danger of breaking just by paying close attention to it. Many keys will have minor cracks along the shaft of the key, and this is a sign that your key is in danger of breaking.

The presence of a spare key reduces the chances of damaging an original key. This is because one key will not be exposed to the extreme amounts of pressure that come with extended use. A spare key allows owners to switch between multiple keys. This allows them to make use of a spare key of their original key is showing signs of wear and prevent the original key snapping inside the lock rendering it useless and for you to become locked out.

 

3. Spare Keys make Key Replacements Fast

There are several things that will lead people to need a key replacement. It could be that you lost your keys*, the key got stolen*, or the key got broken. Whatever the case may be, in this scenario, your next move will be to acquire the help of a local Locksmith that can help you fashion a new key.

Having a spare key handy greatly decreases the amount of time that a Locksmith will need to fashion a new key for you. If the key is not available, the Locksmith will either have to disassemble your lock or they will have to resort to other measures to try and obtain the key code necessary to cutting your new key. In the instance that you are already in possession of a spare key, the key cutting process takes only minutes, and it will cost owners only a fraction of what it would have been without a spare key available.

*In the event that your keys are lost or stolen we recommend that you have your locks replaced with new keys as you do not want your keys falling into the wrong hands. At Keytek® we will always provide 2/3 keys with every lock replacement and more may be available if asked for in advance.

 

4. Spare Keys Give Multiple Users More Convenience

There is an old saying that goes, “too many cooks spoil the broth”. The same concept applies to having too many people using one key. For instance, if a homeowner only has one set of keys, and has multiple people living under their roof, it makes it hard for everyone to depend on one person to always be there to lock and unlock doors. It also increases the chances of keys getting lost because there are so many people who are using one key.

With the presence of a spare key, every individual is responsible for their own key, and it allows for much more convenient access to places. If homeowners and commercial business owners are concerned about limiting access, they can look into employing master key systems. Any professional Locksmith will able to answer whatever questions you might have about this.

 

5. Spare Keys help you save Money

In the long run, having a spare key can save you lots of money as a homeowner, car owner, or a business owner. In the instance that you already have a spare key made (or several spare keys), you can avoid the fees that will be incurred with having to call a Locksmith, having to miss an important meeting, or having to keep your business closed for a few hours because no one can gain access. There are many more downsides to not having a spare key than there are to having one.

If you happen to lose your keys, or they break or they are simply out of the picture somehow, you will most likely be making use of Locksmiths services. In most cases you will need a door unlocking or a key extracting when this happens and the costs will of course be higher than that of getting a spare key cut.

 

Additional Tips about Spare Keys

Many people who make use of keys fear that spare keys make their homes, cars and offices more vulnerable. This is simply because it increases the chance of someone gaining access to your key because there is now more than one key. This is a valid fear to have, but it is important that you keep your spare key safe and in trustworthy hands at all times. Here are some of the ways you can accomplish that:

  • Do not advertise that you have spare keys available unless it is to the people who will also be using said spare key.
  • Never leave your spare keys outside your home (the plant pot or under the door mat for example), these are the first places a burglar will look and it will invalidate your home insurance if the intruder uses a key to enter your home.
  • Only leave your spare key with someone you trust, a local family member, friend or neighbour are your best options.
  • Make sure that you keep a list of all the spare keys you have made and know who has access to each of these spare keys. This makes it easier to track down in case anything goes wrong or if you want to get rid of a spare key.

 

Conclusion

Making use of a spare key is one of the best ways to minimise wasting time and money. Spare keys provide their owners with an overall peace of mind, added convenience, and the realisation that they will not be stuck in a lockout for long if they ever find themselves in one.

 

Further Reading

How Not to Lose your Keys in 2020

Smart Doorbells – Do they work? How Secure are they?

What is a Smart Home?

How Do You Replace a Car Key?

Locked out your car? Lost your car keys? Car keys been stolen? These are all frustrating and stressful situations but worry not we’ve got the full low down on what you can do in these situations to get you on the road again!

 

What to do if you’ve lost your car keys?

Have you got your phone, wallet, keys…? Don’t panic! If you’ve lost your car keys, keeping a clear head may help you remember where you may have left them. If your keys are still not to be seen check with your insurance provider first as your policy may cover lost keys. You can also get a replacement key through your franchised dealer but this may take a while and is usually costly. We recommend that you call an auto Locksmith in this situation as they are usually the cheapest and fastest option.

 

What to do if you’ve locked your keys inside the car?

Stay calm and check if you have a spare key anywhere when you’ve locked your keys inside the car. Our Locksmiths at Keytek® are able to gain entry to your car without causing any damage. However, if you need new keys cut, have locked the keys in the boot or have a certain type of car such as a convertible than a specialist auto Locksmith is needed.

 

What to do if your car keys are stolen?

Car manufactures are continually developing car security so that it is much harder for thieves to steal your car. But if they manage to get hold of your keys and didn’t steal your car at the same time your car is at risk of being stolen too. To protect your car and resolve the issue, here are some things you can do:

  1. Secure your car: Block your car in with another car so that it cannot be driven off or keep it in a safe place such as a garage (if that key wasn’t stolen also!). If you have a spare key, remove some spark plugs and a couple of fuses, so that the car won’t start for anyone trying to take it.

 

  1. Call the police: Report the crime and write down the reference number so you can keep track if there is any progress.

 

  1. Contact an auto Locksmith: An auto Locksmith specialist will be able to deprogram all previous keys rendering them useless and will be able to program new keys as well as changing the locks, so your car is as secure as can be once more.

 

  1. Phone your insurer: Some insurance companies include key protection within their cover. If your insurer does, they may help cover the costs of the auto Locksmith and the new keys.

 

What to do if your car key snaps?

If your car key snaps or becomes damaged then a specialist auto Locksmith will be needed to cut a new key, the Locksmith will then remove the electronic chip from the old key and insert it into the new one. If the key snaps in the lock or the ignition, the same process will occur but the Locksmith will remove the remnants of the old key first. If the transponder key is damaged the Locksmith will need to program the new key so that it can start the engine, key programming is more of a specialised area so before you call a Locksmith make sure they have the correct tools necessary.

 

What to do if your car key battery runs flat?

If you find your car key battery no longer works you can easily replace it with a new battery. To find the old battery gently pry open the fob using a small screwdriver or a coin and you will see a small, round silver battery. Look for the numbers on the battery before you buy the new one so you can match them up.

If your car doors are locked then it is worth trying to open the door by holding the key fob as close to the lock as you can and pulling the handle. Sometimes this works as there may just be enough power in the key fob to unlock door when it is in close proximity. Failing that, open the jack of your key fob, the majority of car manufactures hide a small mechanical key inside so you can manually open the car door.

 

Who do you call?

If you have accidentally left your car keys in the ignition or on the seats and the doors have automatically locked then our Locksmiths here at Keytek® will be able to gain entry to your car, providing there is a frame all the way round your car windows, without causing any damage! Just call 0808 1642928.

If we can’t help you then we recommend you call a specialist auto Locksmith. An auto
Locksmith is usually the cheapest and quickest option. They will be able to come directly to your location, gain entry to your car without causing damage and cut you a new key should you require it. Going to your car dealership or a local garage are a couple more options but they may work out to be slower to replace your keys and are usually more expensive.

 

How much does it cost to replace a car key?

Replacing your car key can cost from as little as £25 to well over £200, the price reflects on the make, model and age of the car and what immobilizer the car has. The key type also depends on the price, e.g. if it is a remote key fob, whether it has keyless entry and whether it is a key made before 1995 without the chip.

 

What information will you need to provide?

You will need to provide some information to the Locksmith to prove you are the owner of the car and you will need to ensure they have to correct tools for the job. Prepare the following:

  • The make and model of the car, some cars require more of a specialist Locksmith such as convertibles.
  • Registration number
  • Vehicle Identification Number, you can find this on your V5C papers.
  • Photo ID, this will help prove you are the owner of the car.

What is a Tubular Key? When is best to use them?

A tubular lock is also known as a radial lock, barrel key, Ace lock or a circle pin tumbler lock where there are a variety of pins (between 4-10), arranged in a circular pattern with the matching key in a tubular or cylindrical shape. It became popular in 1933 by the manufacturer Chicago Lock Company, and has since been widely used with commercial products, such as computers, bicycle locks, ATM’s, glass display cabinets in stores, vending machines and elevators. They are ideal for business owners who want to secure their valuables, but also for theft and vandalism prevention, public safety and protection against unauthorised entrance to buildings and machines. Tubular locks are a smaller version of a morticed lock and are very budget friendly, making them ideal for home and door use. The tubular lock uses a basic pin tumbler system but has a few differences, with the shape of the key being circular and open in the centre, with grooves cut into the outsides of the circular shape.

 

Slots

 

What is their background?

In the 1960’s and 1970’s, tubular locks were recommended as high security locks for apartments and houses. In the 1980s, this was challenged by advancements in lock manufacturers, as well as locksmiths becoming familiar with their certain weaknesses. This led to a decline in the consumer market for tubular locks and keys. However, manufacturers such as Ace, the Van Lock company and Illinois Lock company, continued to manufacture different variations of the tubular lock concept. Today, these are still challenging to lock pickers and burglars, and therefore are used in the gambling industry for slot machines.

Tubular locks are also commonly found on doors and are most suited for new post-1950’s pre-drilled doors. They are one of the most common types of residential locks in the US and require your door to be drilled and prepared in different ways for installation. They were originally designed in order to prevent high manufacturing costs and labour-intensive preparation needed on doors. Tubular locks have an independent latch and independent deadbolt, so you can identify them though the independent face plate for each of these functions.

 

Door Keys

 

How do they work?

The key is circular and has a ring-shaped hole, with a metal cylinder surrounding it in the middle. The pins are pushed in horizontally to the lock; this compares to the standard pin and tumbler system where key pins are moved vertically. The notch on the key should correspond to fit the similarly shaped hole in the keyway of the door, and these will have to line up to allow insertion of the key. Once the key is fitted into the keyhole, the key pins are depressed to the correct depth.

 

What is their design?

The design is similar to the pin tumbler lock, the key has notches around each edge, these depress a pin inside the lock to a certain height, allowing the cylinder to turn. The key pins (red) and driver pins (blue) push towards the front of the lock, stopping the plug (yellow) from rotating round. Once the key is fitted correctly into the gaps between the key and driver pins; this will depress the key pins aligning them with the indentations and shear plane, separating the plug from its outer casing (green), and allowing the lock to turn.

 

Are they secure?

They are secure and good for emergencies, with a feature that allows quick access or exit in the case of an emergency. For tubular keys, this emergency mechanism is on the inside of the door, with a longer protective plate. However, they are also good for securing homes and doors, as a separate deadbolt can be added to the lock to secure the door. Tubular deadbolts have a hardened steel pin within the bolt, and this prevents people from drilling down on it. They are also available with a key in knob or lever function with or without an emergency system and can be great for storage areas or mechanical rooms where a deadbolt is not needed. They offer a high level of security and can be purchased for a good price, providing security for your home and doors.

 

Conclusion

Now that you understand the history and background of the tubular lock, and the basics of using one, you can appreciate why this lock is used widely in different industries. These locks are often considered safer and more resistant to picking than a standard lock, and therefore can be a good option for anyone who requires a higher level of security.

 

 

Best Anti-Snap Door Locks

What is Lock Snapping?

 

Lock snapping is a common method used by burglars to render a euro lock useless. This involves breaking or ‘snapping’ the cylinder, to expose the inner mechanism, which can then be manipulated to open the door. In some cases a burglar may even break the handles to get better access to the cylinder. It is becoming more and more common, as the amount of properties that now have an uPVC door with a Euro Lock installed has grown significantly.

You may not know that the cylinder is the most vulnerable part of your lock and when compromised it renders your multipoint lock points useless. Lock snapping is not difficult and even an inexperience intruder can manage it. All they need to do is apply the right amount of force to the right part of your cylinder and they can expose the mechanism.

The only way to secure your home from this type of break in is to install an ‘Anti-Snap’ lock. These locks have been designed to withstand a lock snapping attempt by breaking or ‘snapping’ in a certain place. Where point where the lock snaps does not allow access to the inner mechanism, meaning that cannot be tampered with. You will still have to have the lock replaced, but it may have stopped a burglar from gain entry. We are going to take you through the different types of anti-snap locks, so you can learn what you need to take into consideration when buying an anti-snap lock.

1.     Sold Secure Diamond Standard

 

By looking out for an anti-snap lock with a ‘Sold Secure’ sign means that you will be purchasing a lock that has been rigorously tested by Sold Secure, a testing and certification house owned by the Master Locksmith Association.

SS312 Diamond Standard was started in 2010 and is being constantly updated and modified to guarantee that it can withstand newer developed methods of attack. It is tested for resistance to lock snapping amongst other methods of destruction.

 

2.     British Standard

 

A lock will on get a ‘British Standard’ kite mark, if it has been manufactured in accordance with the criteria set out by the relevant authorities.  A lot of insurance companies will often specify that a lock needs to be of British Standard to comply with their criteria. The British Standard stamp is widely regarded as a sign of high quality and means a lock can be trusted to be secure.

In regards to Anti-Snap locks the British Standard is the ‘TS007:2012’. A TS007 will protect your cylinder against many methods of attack, such as; drilling, picking, and bumping as well as lock snapping. If you see a kite marked lock, then it should protect your door from these types of attack. However we recommend that you stay updated with new and different ways to keep your home secure. While every TS007 is of a high quality, within the TS007 category there are 3 star ratings. You may want to look at the differences between these ratings to make sure you have the most secure lock that suits your budget.

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.

 

 

3.     Yale Anti-Snap Locks

 

Yale is one of the most recognisable lock brands and any lock made by them can be trusted to be reliable. Yale does manufacture a range of anti-snap locks called the ‘AS Platinum Series Cylinder’.  On the Yale website they state;

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.

 

4.     ERA Invincible Locks

 

ERA is another recognisable name within the home security industry. The ERA have been manufacturing, designing and pushing innovation within the industry for over 175 years. They specialise in trusted window and door security as well as smart home solutions.

The ERA don’t use the Sold Standard or British Standard to give their locks a quality rating. They have a test centre that is accredited by UKAS which means they are approved to independently test to a ‘gold standard’ of PAS 24:2012 certification.

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 – it can‘t be snapped*
  • 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

The difference between the ERA locks and other anti-snap locks is that while traditionally anti-snap locks are manufactured to break in a certain place, ERA lock are manufactured to not break at all. Therefore giving euro locks ‘fighting chance’ against potential thieves. These means that even if someone does try to use the lock-snapping method to break in, you will not need a replacement. The ‘Invincible Cylinder’ is designed to withstand over 15 minutes of attack, meaning the idea is that if the burglar is not able to physically snap the lock quickly then they will just give up. Unlike the other anti-snap locks, you will not need a replacement if someone attempts to break in.

 

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 is 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.

Picking a Anti-Snap Lock

 

So when it comes to picking 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.

 

References:

https://www.mul-t-lock.com/en-gb/site/mul-t-lock/about_mul-t-lock/company_profile/

https://www.erahomesecurity.com/mechanical-security/invincible-door-cylinder/

https://www.yale.co.uk/en/yale/couk/news/2013/articles/new-cylinder/

https://www.locksmiths.co.uk/security-advice/cylinder-snapping/

https://unitedlocksmith.net/blog/high-security-door-locks-how-to-choose-the-best-brand