DENVER, Co. (NBC) – Imagine this: you lose a key and use an app or online store to buy a new one. Then, a hacker gets his or her hands on a copy and breaks into your home. The convenience of this technology is raising security concerns.
“I think it’s just one more piece of privacy that’s out there,” said locksmith Greg Henry.
Locksmiths say they use photos to make keys too. There are companies that accept the photos by fax. Greg Henry’s is one of them. “We’ve been doing it for years, because sometimes somebody doesn’t want to come across town of course to bring a key to be duplicated.”
There are several websites and apps that offer the service. Unfortunately they make it too easy for a thief to snap a couple photos and copy your key.
“Taking a photo of a key really quickly, it means it happens more quickly, it’s more convenient and they don’t need the access for as long,” explained security expert John Sileo.
Websites, such as keysduplicated.com, require credit cards and will only accept clear pictures, but even they admit, they don’t verify that it is your key – or even your credit card.
Locksmiths say the best way to protect yourself is by getting a patented key. That way no one can create a copy without permission.