In the last week, it has come to my attention that at least 10 buildings have had their entry keys compromised by a person or persons who are targeting the lockboxes outside a building’s front door which contains an entry key and/or a master key capable of opening any door in that building, for use by the police and fire department. This was done professionally; video evidence of the thieves show that they removed these boxes in under a minute’s time.
These buildings’ managers noticed that their box was broken into and the keys stolen, but for every manager that noticed no doubt there are two who did not notice. These guys aren’t stealing these keys to add to some silly collection, they have a purpose in mind. If your building’s entry and/or master key were stolen, you need to have the locks changed as quickly as possible. The faster this is done, the less time available to the criminals who stole these keys to perform whatever nefarious purpose is in their mind.
If you have a large building and a lot of people with keys to that building, you may have quite an investment just in keys. If you have inexpensive keys but 75 people, you are still talking about at least $150, and if you have a proprietary keyway such as Medeco you are talking about thousands of dollars just in keys. Protect this investment by masterkeying the front door to accept the common key and another key that is kept in these lockboxes. That way, you can just call me and have the masterpins removed in the event of a stolen mailman key. You will save hundreds and even thousands of dollars. I change the mailman’s key, you put it in a new stronger lockbox, and you are only out about $100.
So go outside and check to see if there are any boxes around the front door of your building, and see if there is evidence of tampering. If there is any evidence of tampering, or if the door has obviously been pried off one, notify your apartment manager. Perhaps suggest that he or she call Maple Leaf Locksmith to install a proprietary keyway and a stronger lockbox before somebody comes back to your building with a key that can open your door. Capitol Hill and downtown have had at least ten of these instances, the likelihood is that there are many more buildings that have been attacked and yours could be one of them.