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Electronic Key Impressioner creates faster copies of lost car keys

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February 9, 2010

The Electronic Key Impressioner is a portable device that can reproduce practically any ca...

The Electronic Key Impressioner is a portable device that can reproduce practically any car key using a sensor that goes into the lock and sends information back to a computer via USB about the location of the lock's tumblers

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If you’ve ever lost your only copy of a car key you’ll understand the hassle it is to get a new one. It’s not impossible because licensed locksmiths have access to the identification codes that car companies use for their keys but according to Steve Randall, vice president of Alternative Product Solutions, this is often time-consuming and can sometimes be very difficult to obtain for rare marques. To address this the company has developed the Electronic Key Impressioner (EKI), a portable device that can reproduce practically any car key using a sensor that goes into the lock and sends information back to a computer via USB about the location of the lock's tumblers - a corresponding computer program searches for the code and a key-cutting machine can use it to grind out a key. In some instances it replaces the old manual "trial and error" method of cutting a new key.

Even keys with transponders in them can be copied because most licensed locksmiths already have the tools at their disposal to code one of these types of keys.

The current prototype EKI works only with Fords - Randall, who is the son of a locksmith, says his next move is to program the machine to work with many more manufacturers vehicles.

But, I hear you cry, what if the local ne’er-do-wells in my area get their grubby hands on one of these devices? There goes the neighborhood. Well, there are already tools that exist for “locksmiths only”. This is planned to be another one.

However, should this technology get into the wrong hands, it could more than upset the auto-makers that may have to look at redesigning their locking mechanisms. Randall, and company president Ted Schwarzkopf at Alternative Product Solutions insists it will only be sold to licensed locksmiths.

Via Popular Mechanics.

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7 Comments

hhhhhhhhmmmmmmm, methinks I have heard promises like this before, an excellent idea but it seems open to abuse if extreme care is not taken

robinyatesuk2003
10th February, 2010 @ 04:02 am PST

And just what, pray tell, prevents the local ne’er-do-wells from simply stealing this item from the local locksmith? One more serious concern for car owners, methinks.

TheRogue1000
10th February, 2010 @ 06:02 am PST

Even if car makers can make the lock systems for new cars copy-proof, what about the millions of existing cars on the road? Every existing car will be a sitting duck for a crook with one of these EKI's. Watch our car insurance rates go thru the roof in the near future, assuming insurers will even sell you insurance.

This is one invention the world does not need.

robo
10th February, 2010 @ 08:26 am PST

Just don't buy Ford and you don't have a problem, but yes this is opening up the doors to all the wrong people. Or will be I should say.

Facebook User
11th February, 2010 @ 08:29 am PST

The problem is NOT that they say yhey will not sell them to criminals. The criminal gangs would make the locksmith do their bidding. My father is Sicilian and as he always told me, with the Mafia gangs you don't have a choice you just do what they say, or suffer the consequences.

If the mafia, Triad', Tongs, Albanian, Turkish etc Gangs want one of these machines they WILL get one. I think they are too dangerous for us mugs (Sorry Customers) and we are the ones who will lose our cars and have insurance companies arguing that as it wasn't broken into why should they pay out etc.

Pablo9176
12th February, 2010 @ 05:08 am PST

Gentlemen, your fears are groundless. A cordless drill will get them into your car much faster, and without any other tools needed. simply drill out the lock in place of a key. replacement locks are cheap and come with keys. And you can replace all locks in your car in maybe an hour or two, including the ignition lock.

This type of tool would just make it simpler to rekey without doing damage. It is NOT an effective car thief tool, without the ability to cut keys as well. Car thieves do not cart around key cutters, computer coders, and computers to run the sensor program.

The only effective way they could use this tool would be to target a specific car, use the tool and leave, return after making a key and coding it, then steal it.

Much faster to simply drill it (and make almost no visible damage) or smash a window and column lock. (standard screw driver and wrench) .

Either method takes less than a minute.

kellory
21st August, 2012 @ 06:54 pm PDT

Anyone having trouble with his door lock would certainly require a lock smith service that is easily accessible, and show promptness in providing its services. Locksmith Cape Town fits into the above mentioned criteria perfectly.

MGascoigne
4th October, 2013 @ 01:00 pm PDT
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