The pros and cons of installing smart locks

By: Harry Patsons

Date: 14 December 2017

The pros and cons of installing smart locksFor many people, traditional locks no longer make them feel safe. They are looking for more convenient security measures. Perhaps you, too, feel it's time to move to more progressive smart locking mechanisms - offering better protection and connectivity.

Increasing criminal activities have also pushed manufacturers into enhancing locks, making them smarter. Nevertheless, no system is foolproof and electronic devices have drawbacks of their own.

If you are one of those people who often lose or forget your keys, then you definitely should consider changing your deadlock to one of the digital locks that require no physical key and open the doors remotely. According to 9to5Mac poll results, almost 50% of homeowners either already have a smart lock fitted or plan to get one. What makes these locking mechanisms so popular?

Why choose a smart lock?

Electronic mechanisms add a significant layer of security. Once the lock is installed, you become the master of the entire system. You can use unique passcodes, words or phrases, advanced fingerprint technologies or your smartphone to gain access to your property.

Most of these locks offer different ways of unlocking your doors and some even have back-up mechanical key access to help you avoid being locked out. Choosing the right digital lock can be hard, so it's always worth consulting a reliable local locksmith before you make a purchase.

For Bluetooth and WiFi operated locks you can use a single smartphone application to control all your electronic locks and even other devices, such as alarm systems, cameras, TVs and more. These mechanisms also allow you to arm and disarm the security system, verify who is at your doorstep, send an e-key to visitors and can even provide a two-way conversation with the visitor through an intercom system. Surveys have shown that most people are comfortable giving access to guests via smart lock.

Best of all, the system is easy to use. You don't have to stand at the door searching for the keys - just tap your phone or say your password to open the door. It's much easier and more practical.

The drawbacks

Being smart doesn't mean you're no longer vulnerable. The majority of these locks work on electricity or batteries. This means that power blackouts or dead batteries could lock you out of your high-tech office. Manufacturers have worked on these shortcoming and the results are promising: some electronic locks come with AA battery units and connect to your smartphone through Bluetooth low energy, which allows them to control the door lock in an emergency situation.

We should also mention that burglars are masters at cracking new technologies: the smarter the lock, the smarter offenders become. Break-ins reduce in number with these technologies but are not completely eradicated.

Another major disadvantage to be aware of: smart locks that are not updated regularly can be exposed to tampering. However, this can be done only by professional thieves with strong IT knowledge, who create false access codes.

Even so, the spread of smart locks is well underway. It is predicted that the global smart lock market will be worth USD 3.6 billion by 2019.

Copyright © 2017 Harry Patsons of AZ Locksmith.