How to Prevent Being Locked Out

No one wants to find themselves locked out of their home or apartment and, as evidence from just weeks ago will show, some people will go great lengths to avoid paying the cost of a locksmith. If you want to avoid having to call an emergency or 24 hour locksmith there are a few steps that you can take before leaving your home to help ensure that you do not find yourself locked out. While none of these tips may be completely flawless, they can help to put you in a better position to be able to access your residence at any point without having to call a locksmith.

Leave a Spare Key

In the past, many residents would leave a spare key hidden outside of their front door in a spot they would think is “secure”. It is not recommended to employ this strategy with your spare key. Burglars will check all of the common places that a spare key could be hidden outside and can be inside of your home in just a matter of minutes. Instead of leaving a spare key outside, leave that spare key with a close-by family member or extremely trusted neighbor. By doing this you can ensure that your key is both secure and available when you find yourself locked out of your home.

Smart Lock Installation

With the way that technology is completely ingrained in everyday life, it is a lot more common to forget ordinary house keys than it would be to forget your smartphone. Now your keys and smart phone can be one in the same and offer you access back into your home. Back at the beginning of October, lock manufacturer Kwikset began offering the first residential smart lock to the public. Rather than having to carry around an ordinary house key, you are able to easily and conveniently open your lock through an application on your smartphone. Traditional keys can still be used on the Kwikset Kevo smart lock, but with how smartphones have become attached to our everyday lives, it makes it much less likely for you to walk out of the house without your key if you have access through your smartphone.

kwikset kevo

The Kwikset Kevo is the first smart lock slated to hit the Australian market on October 1.

Location Apps

In addition to being able to actually open your lock, smart technology offers other avenues through which you are able to keep track of your house keys. Some applications, such as the Tile App, allow for you to locate your keys through an application on your smartphone. Before leaving your home, or locking your door, you can pull up thee location application on your smartphone to ensure that you have your keys with you.

Anytime that you do find yourself locked out of your home, it is wise to have a professional 24 hour locksmith that you know you are able to turn to. Pronto Locksmiths offers just this to the residents of Brisbane and Gold Coast. With an average response time of just 40 minutes and over 15 years of industry experience, Pronto Locksmiths is a locksmith that you can trust to complete any lock service. Contact Pronto Locksmiths today to receive professional advice or to request your locksmith service.

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Reasons to Invest in a Residential Safe

When it comes to protecting your home from burglars, simple lock changes and re-keying can be extremely effective, however having secure locks can not prevent every method that a burglar may use to get into your home. This means that some of your valuables could be exposed should a criminal gain access to your home. By investing in a residential safe, you can ensure that your smallest and most valuable possessions are secure at all times. Even if you do not have a fear of burglary, there are still multiple other reasons to invest in a residential safe. Depending on your needs, any number of different model safes may be best. Contact Pronto Locksmiths today to discuss which residential safe would be best for the needs of your home.

The most common reason that an individual would be inclined to purchase a residential safe is to ensure that the most valuable possessions in their home are safe, even if their exterior security becomes compromised. However, with so many different types available, it can be difficult to understand which safe is best for the needs of your home. Would you benefit most from a wall safe which could be hidden behind a picture, or would a stand-alone safe under your desk suffice? These are important questions to ask yourself before you begin the residential safe purchasing process. In addition to standard safes, there are also models which offer specialized features which lend themselves to certain home security needs.

Fireproof Safes

The risk of fire is not something that homeowners like to have on their mind, but being properly prepared can make your life much easier in the future. Investing in a residential fireproof or fire resistant safe can be the perfect way to ensure that your most valuable possessions, and documents, would remain safe in case of a fire. Birth certificates, certificates of title and historical family documents are just a few of the items wish can wisely be stored in a fireproof safe. While most homeowners do not which to think of the worst case scenario, such as a fire, being proactive and purchasing a fireproof safe could pay dividends in the long run.
fireproof residential safe

Gun Safes

If you are the owner of a firearm, making sure that firearm is constantly secure should be a top priority. Whether it is through theft or accidental use, there can be devastating consequences for not properly securing your gun. The Sporting Shooter Association of Australia highly recommends having your gun secured in a safe whenever it is not in use. Not only will this protect you from a thief being able to steal your weapon, but also keep the gun safe from children who may be in the house. All it takes is one inattentive moment for an unsecured gun to have devastating effects. Multiple models of gun safes can be purchased large and small, which offer different capacities for both firearms and ammunition.
gun safe
In conjunction with the use of other residential locksmith services, having a residential safe installed can give you peace of mind that your most valuable possessions will be secured no matter what. Protecting you from much more than burglary, safes ensure that dangerous or otherwise sensitive materials can only be accessed by authorized individuals. Before going to the shop to purchase a residential safe be sure to complete research about the many different types of safes to find the best make and model for your home’s needs. With keyed, combination and touch pad options, as well as stand-alone, wall mounted and floor implanted models all available it is best to contact a professional who will help you identify which safe is best for your home security needs.

 

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Locked Out Darwin Resident Attempts to Rappel Into Apartment

(VIA ABC) In a scene that could be taken straight out of the Mission Impossible movies, a man in his mid-20’s was ready to rappel down the side of his apartment block after locking himself out of his apartment. Early Tuesday evening, police received a call about a suspicious man on top of an apartment block ready to jump. Once police arrived on the scene they could see the man attempting to count the number of floors and preparing to jump. Wasting no time, the police rushed to the apartment roof to discover what was going on. To their surprise, once of the roof, they witnessed the man with a rope tied around his waist, with the other end tied around a pole on top of the apartment building.

After some quick urging, police were able to get the man to back away from the building’s edge. Much to the police officers’ surprise, the reason that the man was attempting to jump from the roof was to rappel onto his balcony to re-enter his apartment. Fortunately police were able to get there before this Darwin man had a chance to try his plan in live action. By simply not wanting to pay for the services of a locksmith, the man was putting his life, and possibly the lives of others, in danger. The police did say, “to the man’s credit”, that he had decided that the stunt was too dangerous to pull off and likely would not have gone through with the action anyway.

man locked out repels

Having at least seven floors to contend with, this man’s daring reentry to his apartment could have easily turned to a tragedy.

Obviously there are much better options than trying to rappel down the side of a large apartment building, and calling a locksmith is chief among them. Darwin police Duty Superintendent Louise Jorgensen gave the following alternatives, “having a spare key or utilising the services of a locksmith would be a better idea in the future should he unfortunately lock his keys inside again”. While we highly recommend calling your local locksmith whenever you are locked out, there are certain security concerns that having extra spare keys can lead to. Leaving a key hidden outside of your residence is an easy way to give a potential thief access to your home. Thieves are aware of some of the common hiding spots for spare keys and could easily find your spare and access your home. Instead, leave your spare key with a trusted neighbor, or a nearby family member. Doing this will allow you to keep your home, business or apartment safe while also eliminating the chance you have to rappel down your apartment building. While Pronto Locksmiths does not offer services in the Northern Territory we hope that any residents in Brisbane or Gold Coast who are locked out decide to call our professional technician to complete their emergency locksmith service, rather than having to put themselves in danger. To learn ways to help protect yourself from being locked out, review our blog posts, or call to speak with our experienced locksmith.

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Lock Bumping: A Threat to Security

When it comes to your home, or business, security is paramount. One of the most commonly used techniques for a thief to compromise the security of your residential or commercial lock is lock bumping. For many years lock bumping has been a commonly used tactic for thieves because it allows them to disarm your lock in just a matter of seconds, with very minimal effort. There are a few simple improvements to your security that can be made to decrease or eliminate the threat that lock bumping poses. First it is important to understand exactly how lock bumping works.

What is Lock Bumping

lock bumping

View the animation above for a demonstration of just how easy it can be for a potential thief to render your lock disarmed.

Lock bumping takes advantage of the pin and tumbler system that most residential and commercial locks use. With the help of a little simple physics, a potential thief can use a bump key to get inside of your home in just a matter of seconds. A bump key is a regular key which has been cut and sanded down so that it fits beneath the locked pins (as illustrated to the left). Once the bump key is inserted inside of the lock, the thief only needs to apply force to the end of the key. The energy from this “bump” knocks the pins temporarily out of their locked position. After inserting the key and bumping the pins up, it just takes quick timing in turning the doorknob for that potential thief to be in your home or business. Due to the ease with which a lock can be bumped, it only takes a few minutes for one to learn this technique which is why it can present such an ever present threat. There are a few products that home and business owners can purchase to completely eliminate the threat of lock bumping for those who are looking to ensure the security of their residence or business.

How to Prevent Lock Bumping

As mentioned above, there are ways to protect your locks against lock bumping by simply taking some preventative steps. One of the least expensive preventative measures you can take is adding a secondary lock. Utilizing a secondary lock is effective in preventing lock bumping if you are occupying your home or business at that time, or if you are able to use another exit. By having a secondary lock armed you completely eliminate the threat of lock bumping since there is no way to disarm the secondary lock. However, this is not an effective method if you need to exit through that same door, which is a slight limitation to say the least.

If you want to maintain the current convenience of access you have at that entrance, then investing in a bump-proof lock may be the best way for you to eliminate the threat of lock bumping. In order to combat the issue of lock picking, lock manufacturers have produced a number of bump-proof models which vary in their defensive mechanisms. Due to the range of bump-proof locks and other lock bumping defenses, it is wise to consult a professional about the best plan of action for your home or business. Pronto Locksmiths is a perfect place to turn for just this information. With over 15 years of experience and product knowledge Pronto Locksmiths is the number one place to turn for any type of lock or key advice. Depending on your home or business, there may be no need for a bump-proof lock, before proceeding with any installation check with a locksmith. If you do choose to have a bump-proof lock installed professional installation is a must. The importance of a professionally installed lock can never be understated and without professional installation you leave yourself vulnerable to other break-in methods.

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The Advantages of a Master Key

Business and home owners who are tired of needing to carry around a large ring of keys to access every area of their home or business can turn to a professional locksmith to provide them with just one key that is able to open every lock they need access to. This type of key is referred to as a master key, and can be created by re-keying the locks which are already installed on your doors. These locks and the keys which are used to open them are referred to as a master key system. Using a master key system a home or business owner is able to have access every lock at the location, or even multiple location, without the need to carry around a large key ring. However, the benefits of a master key system do not stop with the convenience of just one key for yourself.

Having a master key system installed, especially at a commercial building, can also help you to get a higher level of security. Not only are you able to have a single key which can be used to open every lock that is a part of the system, but you are also able to delegate individual lock access to lower level employees relatively easily. This allows for the business owner and other higher level managers to have convenient access with one key, while ensuring that lower level employees get the access to the areas of the location that they need. By creating this separation, business owners and manager are able to create accountability knowing that only authorized personnel are able to access specific locks.

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master key system

Master key systems are convenient and secure way for all employees to have the appropriate level of access that they require.

 

Benefits of a Master Key System

  • One easy key to access every lock
  • Easily delegate individual lock access
  • Create accountability based on access
  • Secures more sensitive areas of your location

Pronto Locksmiths is one company that you are able to turn to for completion of your master key system. With years of experience and product knowledge the professional locksmith who assists you will be able to come up the master key system solution which works best for your commercial or residential needs. Systems both big and small can be easily completed by Pronto Locksmiths. It is highly recommended to speak with a professional to help you to develop the master key system in order to develop the most effective master key system possible.

How Master Key System Differs from Re-key

Re-keying is essential to the master key system installation process. Re-keying is the adjusting of the pins inside of a lock’s tumbler in order for a lock to be operated by a brand new key. By completing this re-key strategically across multiple locks, our professional locksmith is able to develop a master key system with keys that have varying levels of access. A single re-key is generally completed on exterior entrance locks to prevent theft and burglary however, with the help of a professional locksmith, a system of re-keyed locks can help increase security across your business or home.

There are a myriad of uses for master key systems across both residential and commercial locations. Contact Pronto Locksmiths and discuss with our professional how a master key system is able to improve the ease of access and residential or commercial security that you have. Pronto Locksmiths will also be able to assist you in developing the master key system that will work best for the operation and needs of your home or business. Our professional will work with you to not only meet your needs and desires, but also make professional recommendations which can increase convenience while avoiding unnecessary costs.

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Deadbolt Locks: Simple yet Secure

Deadbolt locks have been a staple in residential and commercial security for years and they are not likely to go anywhere in the near future. The reason for this is the relatively high amount of security that they are able to offer at a surprisingly low cost. Almost every door has a simple knob lock fixed to it, which can be easily compromised by an experienced lock pick. Some home and business owners who are victimized by burglars are surprised to hear that simply having a deadbolt installed on their entry door could have prevented their loss from occurring, yet it is true.

deadbolt locks

Deadbolts are an inexpensive and effective addition to commercial and residential security.

A standard knob lock can easily be bypassed using a credit card or other flat object. Thanks to the nature of the deadbolt lock, this is not an effective way to disable it. It is highly recommended to have a deadbolt installed on any entry door which only currently uses a standard knob lock just for this reason. Without a deadbolt that is properly installed an experienced thief can disable a knob lock in just a matter of seconds, leaving your home open to burglary. By having and arming a deadbolt lock on your exterior doors, you can achieve a much higher level of security than with just a standard knob lock.

While simply having a deadbolt does increase the amount of security that you have on your door, receiving professional installation is key to ensuring that your lock functions properly. Having your lock just slightly misaligned can cause wear and tear or even worse, malfunction. By choosing a professional locksmith to complete the installation of your deadbolt, you can prevent yourself from needing further lock service in the future.

When it comes time to choose a professional locksmith to complete your deadbolt lock installation, consider Pronto Locksmiths. Pronto Locksmiths is available 24/7 and services wide range throughout Gold Coast and Brisbane. With over 15 years of professional experience Pronto Locksmiths should be your number one choice to complete your lock or key service. Choosing an unprofessional contractor can leave your security vulnerable and also lead to further repairs down the road. By choosing a lock professional such as Pronto Locksmiths you can have peace of mind that your locks are going to function properly.

The Future of Deadbolt Locks

Deadbolt may be a simple technology now, but in the near future, it may be more common to find smart technology in your deadbolt locks. Today Kwikset debuted their Kevo smart lock to the Australian market. The Kevo is a deadbolt lock which can be armed and disarmed through an application on your smart phone. This could become more common in the future, as technology because cheaper to mass produce, which could lead to a dynamic future for deadbolt locks. In the meantime, a standard deadbolt lock will help you to make your home or business more secure, without having to break the bank.

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What is bait and switch?

A lot has been made about bait and switch tactics in the locksmith industry, but many may be left wondering, what exactly is bait and switch, and why are locksmiths doing it? While we will provide readers with an idea of what bait and switch tactics are, Pronto Locksmiths always has, and always will, offer fair pricing to our customers and you can call at any point to receive a no obligation price quote.

Step 1: The Bait

There is a simple reason that bait and switch locksmiths are able to continue to thrive, and that is lack of preparation on the side of the customer. If you are able to complete research before you are in need of locksmith service, then you are unlikely to run into this type of issue in the future. What generally happens when someone is locked out of their home or vehicle is that they turn directly to a search on their smart phone and usually call one of the first choices there. When calling this first locksmith, the customer may ask for the price of the service, and when they do, are given that the service “starts at” a low, seemingly reasonable price. The customer accepts and a locksmith is generally dispatched to their location.

The Switch

After the locksmith arrives on scene he will complete service as the customer had recommended, however he will then hand the customer a bill which could be as much as five times more than the initial “bait” price. Either through intimidation or the customer not wanting to waste anymore time, the customer will generally pay the larger fee and go back about their day.

How it Happens

There are two main reasons that locksmiths are able to get away with this. The first being that many customers do not have a specific locksmith to turn to when they are in need of service. Since many customers have begun turning to digital sources to find their locksmith, it is easy for these unprofessional and predatory services to come up above more reputable locksmiths in online searches. These unprofessional locksmiths know this, and they also know that anyone who has lost their car key or is locked out of their home is likely in a rush to get back in. They use this to their advantage and assume that customer will pay this inflated price once it is provided. Some customers do, but for other this can be extremely frustrating and make you feel as if you were taken advantage of. There are easy ways to avoid this happening to you.

To prevent yourself from becoming a victim of bait and switch, you only have to make sure to complete a few minutes of research when you have the free time. Whenever is comfortable, make the call to a few local locksmiths and verify their pricing, with quotes, to ensure that you will never be up-charged once you are in an emergency situation. By strengthening customer knowledge, we can help to rid ourselves of these “bait and switch” locksmiths who prey on the misfortunate of everyday customers.

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What to Look for in a Mobile Locksmith

Being locked out of your home or losing your car keys can be an extremely frustrating situation. When this occurs you want to already have a vetted mobile locksmith who will be able to assist you rather than having to find one on the spot. It is highly recommended that you first find a locksmith in your area, that can be trusted, before you ever are in need of service. If you are not prepared and find yourself in need of locksmith service, you can easily be fooled into paying astronomical amounts for less than professional service. Pronto Locksmiths has tips on what to look for in your mobile locksmith when vetting companies. Finding a locksmith who suites your needs before any service is needed, will help you to save money and hassle in the long run.

24 Hour Locksmith Availability

You never know when you may find yourself locked out of your home or vehicle, so it is best to have a locksmith already saved to mobile device who will be able to assist you. When vetting locksmith companies make sure to ask if they are available 24/7 for service. It is also important to ask whether it will also be a professional completing overnight service and not an apprentice in training. Additionally, you will want to ask what the rate for overnight service is compared to the rate during normal business hours. All of this information will help you to decide if that company is right as your 24 hour locksmith.

Pricing

As mentioned above, asking for pricing is crucial when choosing a locksmith. Before choosing your locksmith for service, ask the price of likely services that you may need. Since price can differ based on your location, ask for a price quote for lock outs near your work and home. It is also recommended to ask the locksmith a price for the replacement of your car key, this is important to know since his price will likely be much cheaper than that of the dealership. All of this will help you to make an informed decision for your which locksmith should be yours, but beware, if a locksmith can not offer you a price quote for a specific service they may be trying to pull the bait-and-switch tactic on you and should be avoided.

Service Area and Professionalism

It is obviously crucial to check the service area of the locksmith that is going to be providing service for you. As mentioned above, the distance a locksmith has to travel can affect pricing, so make sure that you are within the service area of your locksmith at both your home and work. Lastly, but most certainly not least, check the professional credentials of the locksmith which you are choosing. You want to make sure that only a true professional is completing service on your home or vehicle. By choosing a professional, like Pronto Locksmiths, you can not only rely on the locksmith for emergency services, but also use his training and expertise to help upgrade your home or commercial security.

By taking the time to simply call a few local locksmiths before you are ever in need of service, you can prevent large charges and unexpected hassles in the future. All it takes is just a few short minutes, to call your local locksmith to check a few basic details which will give you peace of mind that you will always be able to reach a professional when you are in need of emergency locksmith services.

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Smart Locks, Wave of the Future?

Technology is seeping into our everyday lives more and more, this is no more apparent than in recent advancements to residential security. Smart phones are being integrated into home security making it easier for homeowners to have access for themselves, or to send access to someone else. Some are wary of new smart technology, concerned about safety and security issues which may possibly arise. In the coming months more smart locks will be hitting the market which will make it easier for consumers to decide whether this convenience is going to be plausible without compromising security or safety. Currently the Kwikset Kevo is slated to be the first smart lock to hit the Australian market October 1 and aims to take advantage of being the first lock of its kind to hit the market.

kwikset kevo

The Kwikset Kevo is the first smart lock slated to hit the Australian market on October 1.

While the Kwikset Kevo may be the first to hit the Australian market, both Lockitron and August intend to quickly follow suit. There is a main difference between the Kwikset Kevo and the two which wish to hit the market later. The Kevo (pictured above) is a completely new lock which would be installed on your door, while the Lockitron and August fit on top of the existing lock that you have installed. This is the main difference which causes the Kevo to have a slightly steeper price tag than the other two which are mentioned. This same fact also makes the Lockitron and August models more appealing to renters, who may not be allowed to change their entire lockset.

How Smart Locks Work

Some people may think that a smart lock may not be able to add convenience to their life, after all turning a key in the door knob is not a very tough task. However, a smart lock brings more to the table than just keyless access for yourself. Smart locks enable you to be able to send a digital key to deliverymen, babysitters or other visitors who may need access to your home while you are not there. Another benefit is that you are able to arm your lock, easily, from anywhere in the world. It is extremely easy to run out of the house while completely forgetting to lock your door behind you. With a smart lock, you can have peace of mind that your lock is armed and home is secure.

Smart Lock Security Concerns

Many individuals have been skeptical of how secure a smart lock can possibly be. These same individuals wonder if our security is not best left to the traditional lock and key systems which we see widely used today. One of these concerns lies in the encryption code which the Kevo uses. The encryption which is being used is a lower level than you would find in many high level government documents, which means these locks are likely vulnerable to experienced hackers. Thinking practically, it is unlikely that an experienced hacker would “waste” their expertise on a smaller target like a residential lock.

Future of Smart Locks

It remains to be seen if homeowners will welcome smart locks for residential use. Some homeowners may prefer the familiarity and security that a traditional lock and key set offer, which could slow the initial success that locks like the Kwikset Kevo will be able to have on the market. However, it is likely, that as prices of smart locks decrease and their reliability can be confirmed that they will become popular for the convenience that they are able to offer.

For now, you can rely on Pronto Locksmiths to be able to service all of the needs for your residential lock and security needs.

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Commercial Security: How can a locksmith help?

The security of one’s business is extremely important. Business owners need to have peace of mind that their commercial security is properly functioning so that they are able to focus on the other money making aspects of their business. There are many factors that play into commercial security, but a locksmith can be one of the best resources to turn to. A locksmith can put your commercial security in the best position possible for protecting your business. Beyond standard locksmith services which can be completed for your business such as emergency unlocks and lock installation, a professional locksmith can also offer a bevy of other lock services which can give your business the level of security that you want.

Experience Counts

When choosing a locksmith to assist you with upgrading your commercial security you want to ensure that this locksmith is skilled and experienced. For example the professional from Pronto Locksmiths has over 15 years of industry experience. By having a great deal of knowledge and experience Pronto Locksmiths is able to develop and implement unique commercial lock solutions, which less professional locksmiths may not be able to offer. As a business owner, you should be able to rely on your locksmith as a trusted source for information about commercial security and solutions.

What options are available?

Depending on the needs of your business, a professional locksmith can offer you a range of options to help improve the current standing of your commercial security. You may simply want to have a new commercial lock installed, our locksmith is able to assist you with this. However, he is also able to provide you with other services that can help to secure your commercial location. Re-keying is a viable option that can give you a more secure business location if the security of your keys has been compromised. For example, if a former employee has an extra copy of your business’s key and your lock is still functioning properly, you can have our locksmith re-key your lock to save you money. Rather than having the entire lock replaced, Pronto Locksmiths adjusts the pins inside of the lock cylinder so that the lock can be engaged by a unique key.

Advanced access control can also be completed by a professional locksmith and is useful for commercial clients who want to make access more secure and convenient for both customers and employees alike. To get options for what form of access control would be best for your business, speak directly with our professional. Based on the requirements and budget of your commercial security, our experienced professional will be able to determine which options would be best for you to select from. Additionally, safe services are also available from Pronto Locksmiths. A locksmith can help you to unlock a malfunctioning safe or change the combination on your existing safe. Depending on your model of safe, different services may be available, call Pronto Locksmiths to find out what services are available for your business.

The services listed above are just a small portion of the commercial lock services that can be offered to you by a locksmith to improve your commercial security. No matter which commercial locksmith service you need, make sure to choose a professional like Pronto Locksmiths to ensure that your service is completed correctly.

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