Despite receiving significant attention in the US and European media as of late, the phenomenon of lock bumping remains largely unreported in Australia.
As Australian Lock Company points out, this is a concern because most standard in-line pin tumbler locks can be opened using this method, and as distinct from other methods of lock picking, a lock can be bumped within seconds.
Briefly, Lockwood Australia describes bumping as "a method of transferring energy to the internal pin tumblers to separate the pin sets while a rotational force is applied to defeat the cylinder."
Locks are bumped using a specially crafted bump key, which will work for all locks of the same type. The ease of producing a generic bump key, along with the speed at which a bump can be completed makes this an attractive option for potential thieves.
Both Lockwood Australia and Australian Lock Company have developed unique tumbler cylinders that have been designed to prevent the possibility of lock bumping.
Lockwood's solution is a technology called Kinetic Defence, which it is currently rolling out across its full range of five pin tumbler cylinders.
Kinetic Defence comprises a set of stainless steel driver pins with "a unique geometry to resist the kinetic forces applied to a lock when under a bump attack."
These pins grip to the inside of the pin chamber and prevent the driver pin from being bumped and trapped above the shear line into the top chamber of the cylinder, thus eliminating the bump risk.
Australian Lock Company has developed a distinct, yet equally effective solution to prevent lock bumping. The company's patented Bilock is specifically designed to be more secure, and to withstand any conventional means of picking including bumping.
Several features are incorporated into this design to ensure the resistance of Bilocks to lock bumping. To determine their effectiveness, Australian Lock Company has had several lock experts test Bilock cylinders for the potential of bumping.
One of these experts is Dean Nickel, a member of the Associated Locksmiths of America and the Institutional Locksmith Association, and CRL - Locksmith Lead at the US based Harborview Medical Center, University of Washington.
After testing the Bilock to see if it could be bumped, Dean confirmed that "as expected, it cannot be done."
Further information on both of these technologies can be found on the respective company website, or by clicking through to their listings on Infolink.com.au.
Photo: a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from Joybot's Flickr photo stream.