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11. 07. 2006

Lockpicking basics


I'm a firm believer in the "renaissance man" style of teaching. Everyone should know a a little bit about everything. It leads to a well rounded person with varied interests and lots of life experiences. The teachers of America are responsible for the amusing stories told at the cocktail parties of tomorrow. In the interests of mutual education I present: Lock picking!

The most famous underground work on the subject was done by an MIT student, and he's affectionately been "Ted the Tool" to his kinsmen. Every hacker with a toolbelt knows his name; even if his poorly photocopied treatise didn't make him wealthy it did make him infamous. The only problem with Ted's how-to lesson was that it was only exceptionally useful if you already understood the basic theory involved and just needed refreshers on the internal mechanics of locks.

Locksport International has produced a successor to The Tool's work. "A Locksport Primer" is a simple guide to starter lock picking techniques in graphic novel form. The guide explains the basic techniques of the locksmith's trade with lots of photographs and word bubbles! It makes fun work out of lifting bound pins and re-keying a lock cylinder.

The discussion on tool making is some of the most concise that I have ever seen. Trying to fabricate lock pick tools can be intimidating, but the LSI tutorial makes it fun and simple. Handmade lock picks aren't guaranteed to work better than the mass produced versions, but they are cheaper and worth a lot more street cred.

I would encourage the LSI to keep producing these guides. I have sixteen books on the subject, and I still found it educational. Good job, guys.

Shout out to Hack A Day for the link.

Posted by Johnny    Category: on the web
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Comments (4)

Lock picking is the last thing I would have expected to find here ... way to keep us on our toes! ;)

Wow! First Slashdot, then engadget and now popgadget. My daughter is famous!

Hey, thanks for picking that up. I'm glad people are enjoying our guide!

noelani: LOL! Your daughter's a hero in LSI land. :) Can't wait to see you all at DefCon 15!



I totally appreciate articles like this one, but I was just watching the Today show on NBC and they had a story about how YouTube was aiding criminals by hosting videos on how to defeat locks through lock picking. A similar theme of anti-YouTube lock picking started to show up in UK based news media outlets earlier this morning - All Headline News, Metro UK, Life Style Extra.

Whether it is something stuck in my teeth, or the fact that a 10 year old girl can defeat my front door in 10 seconds, I really would rather know than be oblivious and ignorant to the fact. People should know that it doesn't take the world's greatest lockpicker to hack a lock. I thought that was why I watched the news for in the first place, but I guess it has more to do with sensationalism and market share. Shame on lock makers, shame on NBC.

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