If you are a business owner you will probably encounter times when your employees will need access to the business when you cannot be there yourself. This may cause you to worry about the security of your building. While giving access to only those you trust is the obvious first step to improving security, there are other things you can do to improve security and keep a tight control on who has access to the building. Installing a restricted keyway lock is one of them.
What is a keyway?
If you look at your keys, you will notice that they have a series of grooves running along the blade of the key. These grooves and ridges match the grooves and ridges in the keyway inside the lock that allows the key to slide into the lock. The teeth of the key then enable the key to trip the cylinders in the lock and unlock the door. Many traditional locks have the same keyway, which means keys to different locks can fit inside the lock. For example, your house lock and your neighbor's house lock may have the same keyway. You key will fit in your neighbor's lock, but will not unlock it because the teeth are not the same.
What is a restricted keyway lock?
A restricted keyway lock is a lock with a keyway that only your specific locksmith has. Your locksmith makes the key to the lock and controls all duplicates of the key that are ever made. No other keys will fit into the keyway of the lock. Also, if someone takes your key to another locksmith, he cannot duplicate it because only your locksmith has the keyway and has the ability to make a key to open the lock. A restricted keyway makes it nearly impossible for someone to get a key to your lock without your permission.
How does a restricted keyway improve security?
You and your locksmith are in total control of the keys to your business. Your locksmith will ask you to fill out forms indicating who has permission to duplicate keys to the lock. You may wish to authorize a business partner or other trusted employee for this in case a duplicate key must be made when you are out of town. Many locksmiths will also require written authorization from you and an active ID from the person who requests the duplicate key. The transaction will also be recorded, often with the signature of the person who received the duplicate key.
Can't you just get regular keys with DO NO DUPLICATE stamped on them?
You could, but this is not a guarantee your key will not be duplicated. Reputable locksmiths honor this designation, but they can duplicate the key if they choose to. With a restricted keyway lock other locksmiths cannot duplicate the key.
Is a restricted keyway lock the same as a high-security lock?
A restricted keyway lock may be a high-security lock, but the terms do not refer to the same thing. A high-security lock refers to a lock that prevents lock picking or lock bumping. A high-security lock improves security and makes it harder for someone to break into your business by picking the lock, while a restricted keyway lock improves security by keeping a tight control over duplicate keys that may find their way into the hands of would-be burglars.
Are restricted keyway locks expensive?
Restricted keyway locks are typically more expensive than department store locks, but their increased security often outweighs the added expense. Prices vary depending on the specific lock.
Tips for Improving Key Security
- Only provide keys to trusted employees.
- Record the date and time a key is issued.
- Establish policies that require the return of the key as soon as the need for the key ceases. Log the return of the key.
- Establish rapport with your locksmith and understand his or her policies and restrictions regarding making duplicate keys for your business.
Knowing who has keys to your business is important. Get in the habit of practicing strict control over who is issued a key and set guidelines for their return if an employee leaves your employ. Learn more about commercial lock services through a website like http://www.suburbanlock.com.