Tag Archives: Security

Locksmith scams and what to look out for

Don't get scammed hiring a locksmith

As technology is getting better with giving us that sense of safety when it comes to our belongings so is the business of scams getting tall and elaborating. According to report published by NBC, “estimated US consumers lose around $6.5 billion to scams every year – that’s the equivalent of $60 for each adult living in the US”.

The people who are behind this scam industry are coming up with new and modified ways to target the community. Imagine a person whose job is to fix locks on doors and windows and to open locked doors if you lost your keys is actually a fraud. A locksmith asking for a huge amount of money to open your locked door is becoming quite common now a days.

Cleveland Police investigated a case where the locksmith changed the lock at a very high price then came back the next day and robbed the same place. Steve Cox of the Cleveland BBB says “Of course these companies operate under names like ‘Dependable Locksmith’ in order to exploit the vulnerable emergency situation for consumers who are locked out of their house or car.”

Laura Gold of West Newton found herself in hands of a fraudulent locksmith when she called a nationwide company for a locksmith. The amount was agreed on phone, two guys appeared in an unidentified vehicle. When the job was done, she was presented with a bill for many times the quoted price and demanded cash payment. Gold says she was shocked when the technicians handed her a bill of $580. They demanded cash and she had no choice but to go the nearest ATM and withdraw the cash. Gold had been routed to the call center of Clearwater, Fla.-based Dependable, which is now the subject of a federal case as well as multiple complaints filed by state attorneys general.

In November 2009, two owners of Dependable were charged with allegedly using coercive and intimidating tactics to strong-arm customers into paying costly fees for locksmith services from its network of technicians around the country.

Hundreds and thousands of locksmith swindle people out of their deposits in America. One such incident occurred with firefighter David Rossi. He hired a locksmith to replace three lockswhen his Woodbridge, Va., home was burglarized. Locksmith agreed upon a price of $250 but David was presented with a bill of more than $1,000. “After looking into it, that’s not a normal price for changing locks, even in the middle of the night in an emergency,” Rossi says. “It felt like I’d been robbed twice.”


Ways to avoid locksmith scams

Reliable Locksmith Resources:

If you are searching for a locksmith near you in Cleveland make sure they are  a member of ALOA locksmith professionals  and licenced to perform locksmithing services in your state.

Don’t wait your keys to be misplaced or get lost. Always keep a number of a reliable locksmith company in your mobile, wallet or purse.

  1. Search online for a local company preferably on Google.
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Deadbolt Locks Explained


Deadbolts for Home Safety

One of the most easy ways to increase the security of your home is by installing a deadbolt on the front door. A deadbolt is an additional lock that can be installed relatively easy. The principle is simple: when in locked position, a bar of steel or iron is pushed against the doorframe or wall to prevent the door from moving. When you twist the lock the position of said bolt moves back into the door (open position) to allow access. If you do not have a quality deadbolt, it is easier for thieves to break into your home by force (kicking the door). You can have either a basic deadbolt lock or an upgraded one with more security measures. Deadbolt locks are available in different quality en security levels: ANSI grade, UL listing, and double or single cylinder locks.


Deadbolt Locks Explained


Single cylinder

A single cylinder lock only has one slot for the key. You will need a key to open it from the outside, but it can be opened at any time and by anyone from the inside by turning the knob. The single cylinder deadbolt should not be used for doors nearby windows: burglars can break the glass and simply turn the deadbolt from the inside.  These locks are an excellent additional security precaution for back and frontdoors closed in by walls.

Double cylinder

A door with double cylinder lock provides more security than the single cylinder one. One cannot enter or exit it without a key. The deadbolt can only be trown or retracted by key from both the inside as well as from the outside. These work best for the front door of a house or an office room with (breakable) windows near the door. Make sure to store a key out of reach for burglars, but close enough for yourself incase you have to escape from the house in an emergency or  firehazard.


Security Grades

The United States Standards Institute – a non-profit organization called ANSI (American National Standards Institute) – grades the quality, longevity, toughness, and durability and latch lenght of locks. Deadbolt lock grades are divided into 3 categories: grade 1, the strongest, most secure deadbolt lock;  grade 2, the second highest security lock, most commonly used in residential buildings or shops; and grade 3, which is the minimum grade. If you want maximum residential security, use a grade 1 lock.


Underwriter Laboratories, provides a lock security rating called UL437. It rates all keyed locks including the deadbolts that we discuss in this post.
The Underwriter Laboratories deadbolt security test is one of the hardest to pass; it tests against  forcing, drilling, sawing, prying, picking, impressioning and bumping as well as an endurance test that tests the ability to withstand 10000 cycles of opening and closing the lock.


 Other things to Consider

More often than not, a deadbolt fails to do its job when your door gets kicked down.… Read More.....