Key Duplication

Here’s an interesting use of technology to copy someone’s keys (the metal kind that opens doors). It works with someone taking a hi res photo of your keys, then enhancing the image enough to make a template for someone to cut a copy of a the key.

What kind of photos will work?

Useful photos can be found on photo sharing web sites (such as Facebook or Flickr). This is a passive way for someone to find an image of your keys.

Another tactic is for someone to target you with a camera phone, taking photos of your keys while you hold them. Or with a camera and a telescopic lens, from 200 feet away as the article below suggests.

This isn’t really a new trick, but the software to do all the hard work is new. Technology like this only gets better so it’s time to learn how to protect yourself.

Some tips:

  • If you upload photos showing your keys then take the time to blur the keys first. This is similar to how you would blur your car number plate, or a credit card
  • Don’t display any keys in public. It wouldn’t be hard to obscure them with your hands
  • If you have a choice (such as when purchasing a car) opt for something that uses RFID chips embedded in the keys (many cars have this these days)

Read more about the technique here, and read the full paper here.

2 thoughts on “Key Duplication”

  1. Thank you for this very useful information. I will be more careful not to display my keys in public nor the cute key chain tag I have now.

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