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Key Bumping – Protecting Your Home From Lock Picking

When we leave the house, go to bed at night or are just home alone; many of us lock our doors for protection. We even install dead-bolts for extra protection. What if these weren’t enough?

keysLock bumping has been a favorite lock-picking technique for more than 50 years. This method is gaining popularity because it is fast, easy and only requires a basic key and a file. 95% of locks (including dead bolts) on American homes are vulnerable to the lock bumping technique. The scariest part is that anyone can do it with no industry tools or training.

The locks on our doors (including dead bolts) all work in the same way. As the key moves down the cylinder of the lock, the cuts in the key move stacks of pins. Springs behind the pins push the pins back after the high point of the key is passed. When the pins are correctly aligned, the cylinder turns freely. This method works on regular locks as well as dimple locks.

Bump keys have found a way to fool the cylinder into thinking the pins are aligned correctly. A regular key is filed so all the cuts are at maximum depth. The key is inserted completely into the lock then pulled out one notch. A small amount of pressure is applied to the side of the key and the key is taped with an object such as a hammer. This displaces the pins allowing the key to turn as a normal key would. This method works on the least expensive to the most expensive lock.

There are ways to protect yourself against lock-bumping. Many companies have come out with basic locks that are “bump-proof.” When buying a lock, research thoroughly as to whether the lock is bump-proof. See this example from Amazon.

Another precaution is to obtain a keyless lock. These locks are opened when a code is punched in. Make sure the lock is not a combination code lock and key lock. These can be bumped as well. These locks also protect against other types of picking.

Please research any lock before making a decision. Make sure to get the lock that will best ensure the safety of you and your family.

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One Response to Key Bumping – Protecting Your Home From Lock Picking

  1. Adam November 3, 2013 at 8:02 pm #

    This is a way that padlocks are easily picked.

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