Archive for Cam Locks

Getting Your Security On-Line

Is getting Your Security On-Line Safe?  The answer is it depends on what you need and where you get it from.

This past year we all have become more comfortable in getting most things from an On-Line dealer or retailer. Those restaurants that survived this Pandemic did so by transitioning to On-Line order with pick up. Well, the same can be done safely with your locks.

Find out some information about your On-Line Lock Dealer.

  • How long have they been in business?
  • Do they service the locks they sell?
  • Can they custom key your locks?
  • Are they Authorized to sell High Security Locks?
  • Can they design and manufacturer locks and security systems?
  • Do they have an On-Line site, so that you can order locks 24/7?
  • Do they have lock experts on staff that you can speak to?

Security On-Line

In these times the most important question would be the first question, “How long have they been in business”. A lot of people started web only businesses in the past year to take advantage of the Pandemic and lock downs that we had. Most have no idea what they are doing, they are just “Passing Through” product to you the end user.

This may be OK for some types of businesses, but it could mean disaster for you. Only choose locks from someone you trust to be there in the long term. If you call an On-Line Lock, if you can call them at all, can they answer complicated technical questions? There are a few Lock Specialty Companies that can. Locking Systems International is one.

Buying a pre-packaged padlock to secure your shed in the back yard would be OK to order from any On-Line lock dealer or ever a big box store. But if you are protecting something of value or even people like your family only trust a lock company that offers full service not just sales. We can help you with all you security needs.

Getting your locks and/or security from an On-Line dealer can be safe so long as you do your homework on that dealer. Call Us Locking Systems International or go to our On-Line Store LsiDepot.com.

Cabinet Locks

Cabinet Locks is a kind of a “Catch All” phrase for locks that lock up cabinets, desks, lockers, medical carts, drug cabinets, and rescue truck cabinets, just to name a few.  Now that you are thinking about cabinets, what type of locks will work?  There is a wide range from mechanical to push button to electronic locks.  All have their place depending on what you are securing and what type of access control you need.

Cabinet Lock

For your desk, a single bitted utility lock would work just fine; however, if you are locking up drugs in a hospital drug cabinet then you would want to use a high security lock or an electronic lock with access control.

Types of Cabinet Locks:

  • Single or double bitted
  • Tubular (uses round key-can be upgraded to a patented 7-sided key)
  • SFIC (small formatted removable core) provides security with quick rekeying capability
  • Mechanical high security (provides key control in a high security package)
  • Push button (can be mechanical or electronic with increased security as you step up to the electronic version)
  • Electronic (provides high security with access control-you control who has access into the cabinet and what times they have access)

Electronic Cabinet Locks

These are the main types of cabinet locks.  There are many variants of each type of lock with the price increasing as you go from mechanical to electronic.

Choosing the right type of lock depends on what you are securing, you wouldn’t want to lock up drugs with a simple utility lock.  The same holds true with electronic locks it would be overkill to lock up hand tools with electronic locks.

Let’s look at another type of cabinet which is used to lock up user keys.  These electronic cabinets provide security to protect keys for all types of applications and all types of items and products.  The cabinet itself is usually locked with electronic locks with biometric entry.  To open the door you have to put in your access code, and then scan your finger print or even your eye.  Once inside, the electronics will track what key you remove and for how long you have it.

If you are securing many cabinets, say in a hospital setting, then it is best you use a lock service center that can provide consulting services as well as helping with the lock selection and installation.  If you are only locking up a few cabinets then you should be able to purchase the locks and install them yourself.

Locking Systems International can help you choose the correct lock for your application. From Mechanical to Electronic we have your solutions.

Benefits of Patented Locks

There are many benefits of Patented Locks, most if not all revolve around “Key Control” and physical security. Before we can talk about the benefits, we must answer the question, what makes a lock patented?

Patented Locks

Lock engineers design a lock that is different than others, this usually starts with the key and the keyway of the lock. They look for unique differences in this new design and what are the benefits. They also design physical security into this new lock. This could be the material the lock is made from or how the internal lock mechanisms work.

Once this process is completed then the lock manufacturer applies for a patent at the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office). This process can take two years or longer and there is no guarantee that a patent will be issued. If a patent is issued, then the lock manufacturer can advertise the benefits of this lock as patented.

Patented Locks

Benefits of a patented lock depend on the points and features that were actually patented. Below are some of benefits of a patented lock:

  • Key Control is probably the most important benefit.  This is achieved by designing a key and keyway that is different and unique form anything else being sold.
  • Physical security, this could be construction material, anti-drilling protection on the face or front of the lock and the material of the inner components of the lock.
  • Some locks go through UL and if successful get an UL listing.
  • Environmental protection, some locks are designed and built to withstand, water intrusion, salt and cold temperatures.
  • Electronic Locks, these could have any of the above features and how they communicate with the electronic key and the App. The keyway would be different than a mechanical lock, buy could have unique features that are patentable.

As stated above of all the benefits of a patented locks the key and keyway are the most important.  As I have said in the past, “you must control the key to control the security”. This means that the key blanks must be controlled at the factory level. Usually this type of key needs special key cutting machines to cut them. These machines must be controlled also at the factory level.

The price of these locks is usually higher than off the shelf locks. I think that it is easy for you to see why a lot goes into developing a patented lock.

For additional information on our Patented Locks please contact us at Locking Systems International

Security Check for 2020

It’s time for your Security Check the new year. In January every year I write a Blog to help you think about your Home, Electronic and Personal Security. In 2019 new advances in electronic locks and Alexa® and Google® Assistant trying to help us with our everyday lives.

Home Security:

Purchase Locks On-LineMake 2020 the year that you invest time and money in securing your home. Do all your doors have deadbolt locks? What about the door going from your garage into your house? ALL doors going into your house should have quality locks and you should know who has keys. You must maintain key control. Does your home have an alarm system? They have come down in price consider getting one installed this year.

Locks:

Security CheckDoor locks made big advancements in 2019. Most of these came in the way electronic locks communicate. Physically these locks should be up to the standards of at least a Grade 2 lock. The manufacturers have made it easier to set up and control electronic locks with your smart phone or through your smart assistant. It is now easier to control these locks from a distance through Wi-Fi. Later this year I will be writing a Blog detailing the new advancements in electronic lock technology.

Smart Assistants:

Security Check your Smart assistants like Alexa® and Google® Assistant are appearing in more devices, such as smart lights, speakers, thermostats, electronic locks, and automobiles. These are just a few, there are many more. I don’t think that this trend is going to stop. They are getting better at understanding humans and anticipating what us humans want. I believe that these advancements in smart assistants are good. They will spear head advancements in AI. We just have to make sure that we control and secure smart assistants. They mostly work through Wi-Fi, so make sure that your Wi-Fi is secure with a strong password. Make sure that your routers, modems and switches have been configured with strong passwords that you have provided. If you don’t want them listening for their wake command, you can always shut them off. They all have an on/off button.

Make sure that you all travel safe, especially if you go out of the United States. Always leave your itinerary with someone back home, along with copies of your passport and drivers license. Buy travel insurance that can help pay for any medical emergencies or emergency transport back home. And finally, be aware of where you are, if your gut tells you not to go somewhere, don’t go.

As usual if you require additional information your can get our contact information HERE.

Custom Locks – Built To Your Specifications

When you purchase custom locks, you get the ability to determine the security level, decide if you want them keyed alike or keyed different and the number of keys you want cut.  Once all of the options are considered “Locking Systems International” assemblers will put your order together using OEM parts.  One of the most important advantages is that the keys will be registered to you, meaning that you will have the only keys to open your locks.  When you buy locks from big box stores the keys are very likely to repeat themselves.  This means that someone else will have the same keys that you do.

Custom Hasp Designed BY Locking Systems International

Benefits of Custom Locks:

  • Choose the exact number of locks needed
  • Do you want them keyed alike (one key opens all locks) or keyed different (each locks requires its own key to open)
  • How many total keys
  • Security level (this is directly related to price), the higher the security level the higher the price
  • Registered key and lock codes
  • Choose the finish of your door lock
  • Master keying options (Master keying is where each lock has its own key with the master keys being able to open all locks).  Master keying systems are usually registered.

The choice that you make is convenience over security.  It is very convenient to be able to walk into a big box store, choose your locks and leave and for some applications this is a very good choice.

Decision

The decision that you should make before you purchase a lock is “What are you trying to protect”.  If you need a padlock for a storage shed where you keep your lawn mower, then buying at a big box store would be acceptable. On the other hand, if you are buying a lock to put on the front door to your house then you should consider a custom lock; after all, you are protecting the most important thing you have, your family.

Custom locks give you choice and once you choose they are built to your specifications.

Contact Locking Systems International and we will explain how Custom Locks can save your money and are a better security option.

Battery Operated Door Locks

Yes, the title is correct.  You are probably asking yourself are these types of locks secure, what happens if the battery goes dead?  These are all good concerns, but consider this; if they can make cars that are completely battery operated, door locks should be easy and they are.  In this Blog I will discuss door locks which have battery operated electronics and use a touch pad.

Every Battery Operated Door lock must have mechanical components and this is very much the case in Battery electronic door locks.  Below are some of the features for the mechanical portion:

  • ANSI/BHMA grade 1or 2 certified lock
  • Weather resistant
  • Key override or at least some type of external secure override
  • ADA compliant door levers
  • Should fit into a standard door prep

The lock itself is usually controlled with a touch pad with numbers that look like the touch pad on a telephone.  This is where the user will enter their code to operate the mechanical portion of the lock.  Once the user code is entered and verified as a good code a solenoid or small motor is activated that moves a locking latch out of the way.  The user can now turn the knob or push the lever down to operate the lock.

There is usually one “Master User” that adds or deletes the other normal users.  There can be from 5-50 users depending on the manufacturer.  

Other features can include the following:

  • One time use code (used for service people)
  • Lockout Mode (can lockout a particular person or user code)
  • Passage Mode (allows passage from both the inside and outside)
  • 4-15 digit user code
  • Backlit keypad
  • Audible feedback when pushing a number on the keypad

There is a visual and audible warning when the batteries are getting low; batteries are standard 9 volt or AA type.  If the user ignores these warnings the batteries will eventually die, when that happens a key override is usually available.  The key override is built into the mechanical portion of the lock and it looks like any mechanical door lock.

These types of locks can be used in either a residential or commercial environment.  The grade 1 type locks will usually be used for commercial buildings and the grade 2 for residential.  For a better understanding of the differences between grade 1 and 2 you can search for a previous Blog that goes in detail: “Lock Grades and Functions”

For additional please visit us at Locking Systems International.

Transportation Locks – Securing Trailers and Containers

Transportation Locks are something that we don’t think about very often, maybe we should.  With terrorism high on everyone’s mind it is a different time then it was before 9-11.  Think about all the Tractor-Trailer (Semi-Trucks) that are on the road.  What are they hauling or what could they haul?  What about all the shipping containers that enter the U.S. through our ports?  Are they secure?  There are two ways to secure trailers and containers: one is by using security tags that are placed on the locking mechanisms and are tracked by serial number or RFID.  The other way is to use Cargo Locks and Locking Systems.  In this Blog I will discuss Transportation Locks.

Transportation Padlock
Hockey Puck Padlock

Types of Transportation Locks:

  • King Pin Lock: This lock secures the “King Pin” on the trailer.  Once placed on the King Pin, the trailer is not able to be hooked up to the tractor.  The tractor king pin is what connects the trailer to the tractor.
  • Glad Hand Lock: The “Glad Hand” is a coupling device that connects the air supply from the tractor to the trailer.  The Gland Hand Lock secures this device so that the trailer cannot be connected to the trailer.
  • Air Brake Lock: This lock connects to the dash board of the tractor securing the air brake switches.
  • Gear Down Lock: This lock secures the landing gear of the trailer preventing them from being cranked up into driving position.
  • Vertical Door Bars: These locks secure the rear doors of the trailer to prevent them from being opened.
  • Roll Up Locks: These locks secure the roll up doors that are found on some trailers.

Locks:

The above locking systems are only as good as the locks that go with them.  All of these devices have some cam lock or padlock.  These locks should be high security and patented.  This will provide both physical security and key control.  Padlocks from Big Box stores are not a high security lock as they don’t offer key control.  I have discussed key control in past blogs, briefly, if you can take your key to any store and have it duplicated you DO NOT have key control. Locking Systems Can help you choose the right lock.

There is more effort being placed on the security of Trailers and Containers.  New style locks have RFID built in.  Electronic locks are being deployed.  Tracking tags are getting additional electronic tracking capability.  GPS devices are being used.

No matter what is being used, the rear trailer door should be locked and the trailer should be secured from moving unless authorized.

For additional information please contact us at Locking Systems or at LsiDepot.

RV Security .. Your Mobile House

It seems that when we hook up our RV and head out for a week of camping we forget all of the things that keep us safe at our Sticks and Bricks homes and everyday lives. You have to remember that your RV is actually your mobile house. When you arrive at the campground and set it up you are in your house. Most of this “Security” is just common sense stuff that we practice every day.

  • Make sure that all your locks work properly including your storage locks
  • Lock the doors when leaving your RV
  • If you don’t feel comfortable when you arrive at the camp ground find another one
  • If your site doesn’t make you feel secure ask for another one
  • If you have a Motor Coach take your ignition keys when you leave or at least don’t leave them in the ignition
  • If you are towing a Travel Trailer or 5th Wheel keep your vehicle locked
  • If you are towing a small vehicle keep it locked

These are just some of the common sense stuff that if you practice your camping experience will be a much safer one.

Always keep a watch over your children, know where they are. Most campgrounds have pools or are near lakes or rivers. Never leave them alone near any body of water. Most of this is just stuff that we do every day; however, when we go camping we sometimes forget that all the rules that apply in our everyday lives should also apply when we are camping.

RV storage is also something that we should consider. If you store your RV at your house keep it locked. Instead of keeping a window open for air circulation keep a roof vent open. If you store your RV at a storage facility find one that is fenced and has some type of security gate. Security cameras would be a great plus. Again keep your doors and storage compartments locked and a roof vent open. Consider an alarm system with an internal video monitoring system. Many RV’s have sky lights, these are mode of plastic that can be easily cut open. You should go by and check your RV as often as possible.

Also consider changing your locks if possible. I am on my fourth RV and all of them use the same key for the storage compartments. This didn’t give me a great sense of security.

Always remember that your RV is your mobile house. If we can help please contact us at Locking Systems International

Purchase Locks On-Line

Can locks be purchased on-line safely? The answer to this question is yes, however, not every on-line merchant will serve you well. You must answer this question, what are you trying to secure and how valuable is that to you? If you need a padlock to lock up a lawnmower shed then buy that padlock from any on-line merchant.

Purchase Locks On-LineIf you are securing something valuable like your family by buying front door locks, then you should seek out an on-line merchant that specializes in locks and security. At this point you are not buying a commodity lock you are buying a security solution. LsiDepot should be your first choice to Purchase Locks On-Line.

Here are some things that you should look for in an on-line lock merchant:

  • Do they sell only locks and security items?
  • Can you call them and speak to someone knowledgeable in security?
  • Are they authorized by major lock manufacturers?
  • Can they custom build security solutions?
  • Can they sell “High Security” locks?

When you view their web site do you see only locks and other security items. Does their web site give you enough information to make a decision? If not can you easily contact them via email or phone? And if you do contact them by phone can you talk to someone that can help you select the correct lock.

Purchase Locks On-LineAre you able to order “Custom Assembled” locks. Custom assembled means assembled to your specifications, such as keyed alike, keyed different or master keyed. Can you order just the quantity of keys that you need. This is a very important part of key control. You should have just the amount you need and the ability to orders more in the future if needed.

Can you order “High Security” locks. These have patent protection on the lock and key, that helps prevent unauthorized key duplication. They also are built from high quality material to exact tolerances. And they are built to provide strong physical security.

Does this on-line merchant sell quality locks such as; Cobra locks, Abloy locks and Medeco Locks. If they do that is an indication that they are an authorized service center or manufacturer themselves and will be able to provide the proper help and solutions to fit your needs.

As I mentioned earlier in the blog and in many blogs in the past, your decision on where to Purchase Locks On-Line and how much to spend comes down to “What are you trying to protect and how valuable is that or they to you”.

LsiDepot.com

Lock Store

To Purchase Locks On-Line please go to LsiDepot.

What Is A Registered Lock Code?

Before we discuss a Registered Lock Code, lets discuss just what a lock code is. When a lock is assembled locking pins are placed inside. These pins allow the opening and closing of the lock with the key. There must be a way to transfer the locking pins to cuts on the key. This is called the lock code, sometimes known as a Key Code/

Registered Lock Code Cobra Patented Locks

Cobra-7 Key

A registered lock code is assigned and registered to a user or company. Only authorized users can order cut keys to a registered lock code. These types of codes are usually used on high security locks as an effort to control access. Our Company will maintain these codes in a custom designed computer database. This database will help to avoid repeated lock codes so once assigned they will never be duplicated or assigned to another user.

These types of codes are usually “Blind”. This means that by looking at the registered lock code you will not be able to convert it to a key cut. A lock code chart is needed to convert the code to a key cut that will match the locking pins in the lock and operate it.

With many non-registered codes, it is very easy to convert the code to a cut. For many, the code is the cut. This lowers the overall security of the lock as it gives no key control. Key Control is the ability to know how many keys were cut for a lock code and who ordered those keys on what date. Key control and registered lock codes go together.

Registered Lock Code from Medeco

Medeco M3 Key

High security locks are usually found at authorized service centers, such as Locking Systems International. They are more expensive than big box store locks, so you first must decide what you are protecting and how much is that worth to you. After making that decision, you will know where to make a purchase.

When you purchase a high security lock, registered lock codes are assigned to you. By keeping these codes you will be able to order additional keys later. The number of registered codes you get depends on if you order locks keyed alike, keyed different or master keyed. For example, if you order 10 locks keyed alike you will get one registered lock code. If you order 10 locks keyed different you will receive 10 registered lock codes.

I hope this isn’t too confusing. The biggest take away here is that high security locks and registered lock codes go together.

Locking Systems International has developed a custom database program that we use to keep track of your lock codes and the users authorized to order additional keys to that code.