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Insecurities in Kensington locks

May 19th, 2005
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Want to see how insecure Kensington floppy drive locks are? Check out "Are floppy drive locks any good?".
Towards the end of 2004 stories started to break on a variety of sites (generally bike related) that the latest and greatest Kryptonite locks  could be defeated in seconds  using a Bic pen. Take out the guts of the pen, insert it into the tubular cylinder lock , wiggle it about a bit and the lock would pop open. I've tried it (on my own locks I hasten to add!) and it's almost as easy as opening the lock with the key.

Fair play, Kryptonite eventually started offering customers free exchanges for all of its tubular cylinder locks.

But at the time I had a look around and saw these locks on a variety of things - vending machines, laptop security devices, floppy drive locks, motorbike ignition systems, coin boxes on parking meters. It's an odd feeling to see these being used to protect valuables knowing full well that all that's required to open them is a Bic. In fact, you don't need a Bic, you can do it with the thin cardboard (like a toilet roll inner) rolled into a tube the right size to kit the keyhole. Again, I've tried it and it's easy.

I thought that this debacle would have been sorted by now but not according to Steve Rubel's recent blog post . It seems that the problem is ongoing and that Kensington (a maker of laptop locks and floppy drive protection systems) is ignoring the problem.

As an aside - when I mentioned the Kryptonite problem to one person they instantly remarked "Why use Kryptonite, surely Superman doesn't steal bikes!". :-)

Technorati Tags: locks, Kensington, Kryptonite

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