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5 Fun Facts You Should Know about Lock Picking

Opening some locks will also open your eyes. You will learn that the better you understand the security measures you have at home, the better you will be able to set up lines of defense. Lock picking is a popular hobby that does that. It’s a fun challenge and, at the same time, tests one’s ability to defeat a locking system. Here in this article, we share five facts that you might have not known about lock picking.

Lock picking dates back to 1778

Lock picking is essentially as old as the lock itself. The oldest lock was said to be almost 4,000 years old and it was dug up in the ancient city of Nineveh. And if a lock were to exist, it would not be far off to assume that there were individuals trying to open them without keys.

In 1777, Joseph Bramah, inventor from the English locksmithing scene, revolutionized locksmithing by turning it into a contest. He put a challenge offering 200 guineas (about 20,000 pounds or $30,000 now) for anyone who can pick his lock.

Harry Houdini was once a locksmith

Aside from his amazing stunts, deceptive illusions, and sensational acts of escaping, Harry “Handcuff” Houdini had the ability to perform lock-based magic tricks due to the fact that he was a lock smith and learned from it.

In 1904, the London Daily Mirror challenged Houdini to unlock a pair of handcuffs made my Nathaniel Hart, a locksmith from Birmingham. It was said that it took Hart half a decade to design handcuffs with top-notch security. Houdini was able to unlock it nevertheless.

Lock picking is a sport

Locksport is the sport or recreation of beating locking systems. Those in the community are motivated to pick locks because of recreational, social, and competitive reasons. They emphasize learning and entertainment over malicious activity. In fact, there is an organization called The Open Organisation Of Lockpickers (TOOOL) that holds lock picking competitions every year.

Due to the awareness of lock and safe related vulnerabilities, its popularity has significantly risen. More and more communities are being created with the shared goal of becoming better at defeating locking systems.

It helps lock manufacturers improve their products

The only way for lock manufacturers to test how secure their new inventions are, are for lock pickers to have a go at it.  Throughout the history of lock system development, it has always been an arms race between lock pickers and lock inventors.

Now, modern locks have anti-picking methods that obstruct certain tools used by a lock picker. Just because locks include these security measures does not meet they can’t be beaten.

It’s a cheap hobby to start

It doesn’t cost much to get into lock picking. All you need is a lock pick set and a tension wrench. You can start practicing with locks at home, and if you advance further, you can purchase practice locks with varying levels of difficulty.

Lock picking is a hobby that requires precision, persistence, and patience. These are values that can be very beneficial in life.  For anyone who loves a good challenge, this would make an excellent hobby. And if you ever find yourself misplacing a key, at least you will have the ability to open a lock without it.


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