Lockwiki:Lockpicking resistance

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Lockwiki:Lockpicking resistance

The lockpicking resistance of any particular lock is a subjective measurement of the expected strength of the lock against lockpicking attacks. Many lock-specific pages on Lockwiki assign a lockpicking resistance grade of 1 to 5, with 5 being the highest. This resistance grade is based on the design of the lock, any applicable security ratings, known attacks against the lock, and the general consensus of the locksmith and locksport communities.

Over time, locks may be downgraded due to new attack vectors and vulnerabilities. Known attacks may also be simplified over time, reducing the tools or skill necessary. Locks rarely receive increases to their lockpicking resistance score; most that do are just corrections, not upgrades.

Please use Lockwiki talk:Lockpicking resistance to discuss changes to the grading scheme or the grade given to a particular lock.


The scope of lockpicking resistance includes, but is not limited to, attacks by the following methods:

Lockpicking resistance does not include considerations for key control, key simulation, impressioning, decoding, bypass, or destructive entry.

Resistance grades

1 - No resistance
The lock provides relatively no resistance to lockpicking. This is usually a symptom of poor design, poor manufacturing tolerances, a low number of components, and a low number of real key differs. Locks of this grade may be easily raked or picked by beginners or amateurs. Standard warded padlocks are one example of locks in this grade.
2 - Little resistance
The lock provides minor resistance to lockpicking. Locks of this grade generally do not have anti-lockpicking mechanisms, high differs counts, or high tolerances. Tools to pick these locks are widely available, and can easily be made by hand. Standard low-security residential pin-tumblers fall into this grade, along with most low-security padlocks.
3 - Moderate resistance
The lock provides moderate resistance to lockpicking, including some defenses against specific types of attacks. Locks of this grade usually incorporate anti-lockpicking mechanisms, have respectably high differ counts, and medium to high tolerances. The effectiveness of these changes is not sufficient to prevent a moderate or highly skilled attacker from picking the lock.
This grade may also include grade 4 locks that have been downgraded because of newly discovered or simplified vulnerabilities (for example, several Medeco models which are now known to be subject to key bumping and simplified traditional picking attacks).
4 - High resistance
The lock provides high resistance to lockpicking, including defenses against specific types of attacks. Locks will use anti-lockpicking components, have a high degree of real differs (including applicable key profiling options), and have high tolerances. Tools to pick these locks are not readily available, or may require extensive practice and training to use. The skill level required to pick these locks is also exceptionally high, with most attackers being unable to open these locks when given an ample amount of time. The majority of high security locks fit into this grade (or grade 3).
Locks of this grade are expected to resist key bumping attacks without prior knowledge. Many sidebar locks of sufficient quality are in this category provided that they can resist attacks such as bumping without the proper sidebar code. Poor distrubution of sidebar codes may mean the difference between the lock being grade 3 or grade 4.
5 - Extreme resistance
The lock provides extreme resistance to lockpicking, including defense against all common types of attacks. This includes key bumping, comb picks, pick guns, tryout keys, and traditional lockpicking. Tools to attack this lock are commonly unavailable to the general public and require extreme skill, training, or time to use properly. Locks of this grade may also provide extended master keying capabilities without sacrificing a great deal of security.
Few locks qualify for grade 5 status, and many that initially do are later downgraded due to the discovery of vulnerabilities.

Qualifications for grading

Please take into account all of the following (and more) when selecting or changing the grade of a particular lock:

  • Design of the lock (pin, wafer, lever, etc)
  • Number of locking components
  • Security rating(s) of the lock
  • Tolerances of the lock
  • Number of real differs
  • Known attacks against a particular model lock
  • Possible attacks against a given design
  • Availability and cost of lockpicking tools
  • Skill required to open lock with traditional tools
  • Skill required to open lock with specialized tools
  • Effects of master keying

Assigning a grade

To assign or modify the grade of a particular lock, use the {{Pick resistance}} template. Please insert the template tag next to "Lockpicking" under the Vulnerablilities section on the lock model's page.

See also