The Seymour Locksmiths Blog

Should I Change My MPLS Multipoint Locking System Cylinder?

Should I Change My MPLS Multipoint Locking System Cylinder?

MPLS (Multipoint Locking System) fitted to your front door, back door or Patio doors is a great locking system, but where a lot of these systems fail to meet insurance approval is the cylinder that has probably been in place since the system was installed. The cylinder is where you use the key and is separate to the MPLS. There are four Kitemark standards, one star, two star, three star and Diamond approved cylinders.

Is My MPLS Cylinder Secure?

The average time it takes to force a door with a standard cylinder is 2-3 minutes. In most cases, the cylinders are bypassed using the now common method known as Cylinder Snapping. You can read my blog about Cylinder Snapping here.

Most Kitemarked cylinders will withstand snapping, but they are not that difficult to bypass with the correct knowledge, and believe me when I say these opportunist thieves are always trying to be one step ahead.

A Kitemark cylinder with 3 stars will have been tested to a very high standard and if passed it will be awarded the TS007 3 star rating, meaning it will protect against every attempted break-in.

This security standard has been developed by the Door and Hardware Federation (DHF) and Glass and Glazing Federation (GGF). Along with Secured by Design and Police Federation.

The easiest way to check if your cylinder is Kitemarked is to ID the cylinder and see if it is accredited. A standard cylinder is what most uPVC door manufacturers use because simply they are cheaper than a cylinder that has been manufactured and tested to withstand attack by a burglar.

Cylinders that have been tested to a standard recognised by insurance companies and the police federation will have a star grading. 1 star to 3 star cylinders have all been tested and approved.

Having at least a 1 star cylinder fitted to all your external uPVC doors will make most opportunist thieves simply move on to the next easy door. The simple fact that you have now made it much harder to bypass your MPLS by manipulating the cylinder will prevent a lot of opportunist thieves from entering your property.

3 star kitemark cylinder
Three star cylinder showing the Kitemark symbol

What’s The Difference Between One Star, Two Star, Three Star And Diamond Approved Cylinders?

A 3 star cylinder will have multiple layers of protection and will show a Kitemark with 3 stars above. The 3 star cylinder will have been tested to withstand, Drill Attacks, Snapp Attacks, Picking and bumping methods.

The 1 star and 2 star cylinders can be used in conjunction with approved hardware such as handles. Door hardware which has been approved in the same way that 3 star cylinders have will also have a 1 or 2 star approval. Using hardware that has 2 star and a cylinder that has 1 or 2 star will give you 3 star approval.

2 star kitemark hardware handle
Hardware with 2 star approval

SS312 Diamond Approved Standard Cylinder

These cylinders are the top range when it comes to safeguarding your property. Approved by the Sold Secure’s Approved Diamond Standard. They have been tested and passed the 3star rating but because these are so indestructible a new Diamond rating has been created.

As of Jan 2019, there are 13 cylinder manufacturers producing the Diamond Cylinders. One cylinder manufacturer is so confident in its cylinder that it guarantees to the customer £1000 if the property was wilfully entered through their cylinder, very impressive I’d say.

SS312 Diamond Approved Standard Cylinder
Ultion SS312 Diamond Approved Standard Cylinder 

Take A Look At A Diamond Cylinder

I’m going to explain in more detail what a Diamond Cylinder can do to withstand an attack. The Ultion Diamond Cylinder is, in my opinion, the best cylinder on the market today.

This video will show just how easy it is to gain entry through a standard cylinder.

Nine seconds to gain entry, unbelievable I hear you say while the Diamond Cylinder is 1.5 hours in, lots of noise and still no entry.

The Ultion cylinder goes into lockdown mode when under attack. This is because the Ultion has a hidden pin that when attacked goes into lockdown mode and is very difficult to bypass.

Lock picking technology is also used to prevent picking and bumping to gain entry, I know of plenty of Locksmiths who simply cannot gain entry using the traditional methods to gain entry.

Twenty point drill protection, each pin and plate is made from hardened steel, precisely positioned to protect against attempts at drilling. Keys for this cylinder are also restricted to you, meaning no one else can have keys cut. You are in full control of your keys.

Trusted to protect, Ultion will give you the customer £1000 if your Ultion cylinder is bypassed using the common method of cylinder snapping. That is some statement and the only cylinder on the market to do this.

Everybody approves the Ultion Diamond Cylinder. Locksmiths approve, the Police approve and British Standards approve.

For any queries or to book an appointment to have this professionally fitted please call Jeff at Seymour Locksmiths. We can fit these within Sussex, including Worthing, Hove, Shoreham by Sea and all the surrounding area.

Accepting Bitcoin as a Small Business – 4 Years In

Should You Accept Bitcoin at Your Small Business?

As self-confessed Bitcoin enthusiasts here at Seymour Locksmiths we value the importance of decentralised ledger technologies. They have the power to change a lot of things, from financial transactions to unlocking your front door (yep, Bitcoin-powered smart locks are a thing).

In 2014 a large school of thought suggested that the main breakthrough use case for Bitcoin would be peer to peer transactions. That being customers and businesses paying for goods and services directly between one another without having to rely on payment networks such as Visa.

We decided to put this theory to the test. In September 2014 we officially started accepting Bitcoin for our locksmith services in Worthing, shortly after we also starting accepting Dash and expanded acceptance to our entire service area. Since that point over four years ago and the time of writing, we have not had one customer ask to pay in Bitcoin, Dash or any other cryptocurrency.


Why does no one want to pay their local locksmith with Bitcoin?

I could list 50 different reasons why but for us it boils down to two main facts. A very small percentage of our customers posses Bitcoin in a hot wallet ready to transfer and secondly, Bitcoin can be slow and expensive for small payments.


It’s not all doom and gloom.

While none of our customers has actually paid a locksmithing invoice with Bitcoin we have had lots of interested people wanting to discuss the subject in depth. Over the years we have noticed a steady uptick in customer awareness of Bitcoin with a huge surge during the bull run and news cycle during mid to late 2017.


Will Seymour Locksmiths keep accepting Bitcoin?

Yes! We are looking forward to trying our new technologies that are being built on top of Bitcoin such as the Lightning Network. We are expecting to see a dramatic improvement in Bitcoin’s ability to serve the small payments markets such as the one of a Shoreham locksmith. We are also looking at adding other cryptocurrencies as payment options, if you have any suggestions we’d love to hear from you. This time we will trial new currencies for our Locksmith services in Hove before introducing it as a payment option to our entire service area.


Should my small business accept Bitcoin?

We think accepting Bitcoin is a positive move for your small business. While you may not get anyone paying in it now, it does come with other added benefits:

  1. You are helping spread awareness and understanding of Bitcoin to your local community
  2. It can bring traffic to your website. Sites like Luno have pages dedicated to listing businesses that accept Bitcoin.
  3. It shows your customers that you are a forward thinking company.

How does my business accept Bitcoin?

If you’d like us to write a write a blog explaining how to start accepting Bitcoin at your local business please let us know on our Facebook page or by using the contact form on our home page.


Multipoint Locks / Nightlatch Mode

As a qualified locksmith, I’m often called out to residents who have locked themselves out. However, I’m seeing more and more residents actually not locking the the door correctly. If you have a uPVC door with a Multipoint locking system then please make sure you know how to operate it correctly.  Below I will explain how to lock one type of system that many residents do not lock correctly.

There are mainly three types of Multipoint Locking Systems (MPLS) used in the UK.

Lift Lever system, Nightlatch system and Key Wind system, These are mainly fitted to uPVC and composite doors.

The Nightlatch system is the one I’d like to explain how to operate them correctly.

Many customers are unaware that simply closing the door and lifting the handle on either side of the door does not actually lock the door. 

Yes, you still need to use a key to open the door from the outside which is only closed in Nightlatch mode, this means the door is closed on the latch only, not the locking points. The latch can been seen on the leading edge of the door, with the door open; operate the inside handle downwards, you will see the latch retract into the door. The outside handle will not retract the latch back, only the key will. This is a sure way to determine which MPLS you have.

The correct procedure to locking and unlocking a Nightlatch MPLS can be seen on the diagram below.

From the outside of the door the key will retract the latch and the door will be open. On the inside of the door the handle will retract the latch. This is known as split spindle operation.

Leaving your property whilst not using the key to lock the system will leave the property vulnerable to opportunist thieves, who know what to look for on these types of doors to show them that the door is actually not locked and is only closed in Nightlatch mode. With the correct tools the door can very easily be opened in less than a few minutes.

In some cases Insurance companies will consider this negligence on the proprietor and will be reluctant to pay out on any claims because the door was not locked and only closed in nightlatch mode. Insurers can soon determine that this is the case because there will be no forced entry at the property.

I hope by reading this blog that you will have a better understanding on how to operate these types of Multipoint locks. If you would like to discuss any of the above then please feel free to give Jeff a call at Seymour locksmiths who is a Shoreham Locksmith, Lancing locksmith, Hove Locksmith and many others.

 

Ways to Secure Your New Home


Ways to Secure Your New Home


For my latest blog I thought I’d give you the reader some guidelines of jobs to do when moving house and ways to secure your new home.

Finally after weeks of making sure everything is done, you’ve now received your keys for the new home. You can relax now, there’s still a few boxes to unpack but they can wait, its time to put your feet up. But wait! Are you done with all the essential things that need doing when moving? You’ve moved in and all your worldly possessions are in the house. There’s one question I’d like to ask. Are you secure in your new home?

Ive put together a little checklist, that if you follow you will be able to answer that question shortly. Or give Jeff a call at Seymour Locksmiths for a free no obligation Home Security Check.

Change The Locks

You’d be surprised at how many new occupants don’t change the locks on external doors when moving into a new property. The previous occupants will have provided you with a set of keys, but do you know if these are the only keys for your new property?

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Often keys are given to tradesmen, house sitters, dog walkers etc. In some cases the previous occupants keep a set of keys. All these keys mean anyone can gain entry to your new home using none destructive measures. If the worse did happen and you were burgled, your home insurance may default on paying out any claim that you make because the locks have not been changed.

Check fitted door and window locks

Walk around the house, checking all external doors. Do the doors close properly?
If you have uPVC doors fitted, does the multipoint locking system work as it should?
Can the door be easily locked?

Check your windows. Do they close securely and does the handle lock? If sash windows are fitted, can they be opened from the outside? Do the sash window locks work?

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Heres a simple infographic that explains quickly how to spot if your multipoint lock isn’t working as it should.

Most Multipoint locking Systems require a 5 year service and adjustment to keep them working as they should.
You can read my previous blog regarding Multipoint Locking Systems.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Home Security

The front door, does it have a letter box? A lot of opportunist thieves fish keys through the letterbox. Don’t leave your keys in view of an open letterbox. You can have fitted a letterbox cowl, this makes it difficult to fish anything through the letterbox, a very cheap solution.

 

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Consider Home security systems

More and more homes now have a security system in place, this can be a simple DIY system or a fully monitored secure system fitted by experts. You can evaluate your area and choose a system that works for you. Some basics to consider are an alarm, motion detecters for the doors and windows, carbon monoxide and smoke detecters.

yale-premium-alarm-ad-alarms-approved-installer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Redirect Your Mail

Ensure your post is redirected to your new address. Lost or missed mail is a security risk.
You don’t want sensitive letters like bank statements falling into the wrong hands.

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Secure Your Wifi Password

Its easy to forget this one, most people stick to the password provided by their internet provider. An easy search will show anyone which network you are with. With the correct knowledge your password can be gained and access to your wifi and internet usage can be seen.

Checking Trades People I.D.

Moving home usually means calling on some trades people. Check there I.D. before letting them in. Criminals are known to target new home owners using false I.D. to gain access to your property. If your unsure about the I.D. do not let them in until you have verified they are genuine.

Get To Know Your Neighbours

Knowing your neighbours is a great way to make your property more secure. Your new neighbours will keep an eye on any strangers and in return you can do the same for them. If they know you and your family and recognise you they may just ask a stranger what they’re doing.
So pop round with a bottle of wine and introduce yourself. You’d be amazed at how many new occupants to a property don’t even know their immediate neighbours.

Thinking Ahead

Great now you’ve gone through all the above, do the rest of the family know about all the measures you have put into place to secure your home? Sit them down, go through how the alarm system works, make sure the children know to lock doors and not leave keys lying around. I’m called out often because one of the family has lost their set of keys. Do you have the local police contact details and your local locksmiths details?

Thanks for reading my latest blog, I hope by simply following this easy check list you make your new home more secure for you and your family.

Jeff Seymour/Seymour Locksmiths – locksmith in Worthing, Shoreham-By-Sea, Lancing, Steyning and more.

The Importance Of Customer Care

As part of my job, I feel its very important to not just get people back in their home when locked out, but to try and make sure that they don’t carry on locking themselves out and find the best solution for there circumstances.

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I received a call from the son of an elderly gentleman in Worthing, the son was in London that day and was concerned for his father. After searching Locksmith Worthing online and giving me a call, he explained that his father is suffering from dementia and he was very confused as to why he was locked out.

Having arrived at the house to see the gentleman in such a confused state, it was clear that I would need to get him back inside as soon as possible. He had three keys on his keying, one for the front door porch, one for the inside front door and one for the back door, that amount of keys would confuse anyone!


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Window and Door Restictor

For my latest blog I thought id keep you up to date with new products on the market.

ERA window and Door Restrictor

This latest window and door restrictor is a great and very simple to use device and for the first time a window and door restrictor meets standards set out by the Door and Hardware Federation. A great device for balcony windows and doors were young children are in the house.


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Night Latch – What to Know

Night Latch – What To Know

For my latest blog I thought I’d write about night latches or as some people refer to them as a Yale Night Latch and the different types on the market.

There is some misconception about night latches and how they are operated. Hopefully after reading this blog, you will have a better understanding of a night latch, how to operate them correctly and which type of night latch will best suit your security needs.


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The Diary of a 24 Hour Locksmith

24 Hour Locksmiths

Typical Day as a 24 Hour Locksmith

I’m asked so many times what is it like being a 24 hour Lancing locksmiths. I thought it would be interesting to write a blog telling you what my typical day consists off. I write all my jobs down in a diary and this is from 1st Feb 2016.


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Tips To Beat The Christmas Burglar

Christmas Burglar

christmas-burglar

Leading up to Christmas is a very busy time for most households, very few people think of home security at this time of year when in fact the opportunist burglar is equally as busy.

Read the tips below and make it harder for that Christmas burglar.
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Multi Point Locking Systems

Multipoint Locks

What Is A Multipoint Locking System?

Multipoint locking systems (MPLS) became widely used in the mid 80’s on residential properties throughout the UK. Over time these systems fail. Why do they fail?
Well like most mechanical products they can become worn & tired and therefore break. Some of these multi point locking systems have been around now for thirty plus years.
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