The burglar uses the bump key and separates the driver pins and key pins within the lock allowing the key to turn and unlock the door.
This unscrupulous technique is very powerful and can be used by criminals to open a wide variety of locks within a short period of time. Besides, the process does not damage the lock since it does not require much force hence it does not leave any detectable evidence.
One undisputed fact is that almost 90% of US doors have cylinder locks that are susceptible to lock bumping.
There are many sure ways to prevent lock bumping and make your home or business more secure from unauthorized access. However, these techniques come with different price tags and offer different levels of security. The level of protection is directly proportional to what an individual is willing and ready to spend.
Here are ways to prevent lock bumping.
Install chain latches to your exterior doors
This is a simple way to increase the security of your home. Although this technique may not affect your locks’ vulnerability to bumping, they at least make it cumbersome for criminals to gain entry to your property by providing an additional layer for a criminal to bypass.
Install new high security locks
If you want guaranteed security for your home or office, it’s a good idea to install high-security locks. There are numerous high-security locks that are difficult to manipulate. Bump-proof deadbolt locks work best on exterior doors when reinforced with a strong frame and door. Mul-t-lock and BiLock are examples of high-security locks that feature programmable side bars and lack top pins making them virtually impossible to manipulate. These locks also show high resistance to attacks and other security features like defense against picking, drilling, an unauthorized key duplication.
High-security keyways are protected by a patent meaning that they can only be produced by one manufacturer who issues the specific key to a particular security or locksmith company. A high-security lock is made of the strongest material. The locks are usually heavier with thicker screws and are fitted with several other anti-theft measures. Use of keyways is one of the most effective ways to ensure your keys do not end up in unscrupulous hands. You can seek advice from a professional locksmith on the best locks for your situation, based on budget and desired level of security.
Modify the existing locks
If you do not want to spend money on new locks, ask a professional locksmith to help you in modifying the existing locks. Here you need to install special pins to make your locks harder to bump. These security pins are designed to bind before they reach the lock’s sheer line.
Consider keyless deadbolt locks
Keyless locks became popular a while ago when bump locking cases became rampant. The older locks feature key cylinders that can be lock bumped. As a security measure, you need to install bump-proof keyless locks. The best option would be combining the keyless lock with biometric technology. Although it’s more costly than other options, it’s worth it as it is by far the most secure.
Install a home security system
These are systems that detect when the door is opened and set off an alarm. Given that bump locking leaves no detectable evidence, you may not be able to convince an insurance company that your claim is genuine without hiring a professional forensic locksmith. Therefore as an extra security measure, install cameras by your main doors
Light commercial grade locks
Consider replacing your current locks with light commercial grade locks. Install locks that are approved by a third-party organization such as the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and Underwriter Laboratory (UL). These organizations analyze, test and grade deadbolt locks.
The highest quality locks have ANSI grade 1 certification hence they are ideal to be used on residential doors.
Install anti-lock bumping devices
If you are on a limited budget, do not worry as there are mechanisms that can help you protect your property. You can find several affordable anti-lock devices on the market designed to prevent the thumb turn part of a deadbolt from turning. When it cannot turn, it means the deadbolt cannot retract inside the lock.
Another viable option is to install non-tumbler locks such as rotating disk locks, magnetic locks or electronic locks. An electronic lock is bump-proof and makes use of electricity to drive its locking mechanism. They use magnets, solenoids, or motors to activate the lock by either supplying or removing power. An electronic lock can be connected to an access control system to further strengthen the security.
Burglars take advantage of the nature of an area to execute their ill intentions. Therefore, it’s good to ensure the landscaping around your home or office is kept clean. Thieves tend to hide behind bushes as they try to gain access to your property. Ensure your home has wide open spaces and good lighting so that it can deter intruders. Also consider adding security measures such as motion sensors.
Get a dog
Burglars like environments where they’ll go unnoticed. When you have a keen dog, they will be afraid of gaining access to your property as they will be scared of the dog drawing attention by barking.
Lock bumping is serious threat to the security of your property and therefore you should leave nothing to chances. Its time you upgrade all your locks. Locks alone are not enough to provide maximum security to your property. Consider installing a door with a solid core and frame, a strong plate and door jamb and prevent forced entry in case the burglar manages to bump the lock.
Overall, with less regard to the initial cost, it is advisable to invest in a proprietary lock from a trusted locksmith to safeguard your home or office against lock bumping.