Yet Another Safe Thread

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by Randy Abercrombie, Jun 22, 2022.

  1. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    I’m not worried about my safe walking out the door. It is large, extremely heavy and bolted down…… When I bought the safe, I wanted one with a spinning dial type lock. But being a penny pinching sort of fellow, I purchased one with a digital pad that was on clearance…… For whatever reason I been feeling funny about this thing lately. A quick YouTube search had pages of videos on how to crack a digital safe…. I don’t want to carry my coins to the safe deposit box. I have coins there now that I haven’t seen for five years or more….. Are these digital locks secure?

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  3. SensibleSal66

    SensibleSal66 U.S Casual Collector / Error Collector

    Do you have a pic of the hole safe or is that too much to ask?:angelic:
     
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  4. MIGuy

    MIGuy Well-Known Member

    I'd say that the vast majority of decent safes are relatively secure - there are two factors that I think are especially important - make it too heavy to carry away / bolt it down and have a lock that can't be defeated with a hammer or pry bar in a matter of minutes. Personally, I bought a large and very heavy fire proof filing cabinet - the type I have sells for about $1800 new but I got it used on Craigslist locally for $150. Unfortunately I overestimated what me and my son could move on our own, and I wound up paying a local moving company another $150 to put the dang thing where I wanted it in the house. I put an additional locking bar set on it because the lock didn't impress me and have it tucked away in a place where crooks wouldn't be likely to look at it, in any case, with some old office furniture. The bottom line is that if a thief who is targeting your collection and knows how to crack a digital safe or has whatever it takes to get in, it's not worth worrying about. That's why insurance is a good idea. Also, I don't really talk about my coin collection locally. There is safety in silence. (I also have a dog and a video doorbell). I joined the ANA (free) just so I could get insurance through Hugh Wood - if you don't already have insurance, they have a good reputation and are the cheapest I found, but you can shop around. Bottom line, I think your safe is probably fine. This article actually says that digital safes are harder to crack than combination safes, but be sure you don't have a digital reset button (apparently cheaper ones might have this weakness) - https://www.covesmart.com/blog/how-to-break-into-a-safe/
     
  5. Paddy54

    Paddy54 Hey brother can you spare a half dime?

    Nope ....and if it was intended for it to be a gun safe...more issues...as they have chemicals that leach out..and can cause issues on your collection.
    That type of safe can be broken into...in minuites if the person knows his stuff.
    I have a freind who works for a company here that sells safes...as well lock and key business. They are local and I purchased both of my vaults from them.
    1 drill hole I was told your safe will pop right open.
    I cant say it enough gun safes arent for coins....they are for firearms....and many believe that you can store anything safely in them.... but you cannot.
    As my friend showed me how easy these can be opened. And to be honest it was truely an education...as I was going to go with the same sort of safe.
    Lets be honest as we all seen safes very reasonable price at Costco....however my friend put it this way... you need brain surgery ....are you going to see a proctologist....or a nuro surgeon?
    And his advice well taken.... he also told me of a spouce passing and the wife has no idea the combination to open the safe....he said I make a killing poping these boxes ...so much i charge a flat fee as an hourly rate I be losing money....after 15 minuites.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2022
  6. I would be more worried about someone splitting the side of the safe than carrying it out. Fire resistant gun safes and similar safes have relatively thin metal shells, a plaster/drywall middle, and a particle board liner. I have seen a 5’ gun safe that was split down the side by a couple of heroin addicts using a crowbar and an axe pounded down by a sledgehammer. It supposedly took them less than 15 mins to rip it apart.

    The digital lock is a different concern. Some of them can be opened by an 8 year old with a speaker magnet. Others are fine. I personally would do research on the specific model you own and decide accordingly.
     
  7. Paddy54

    Paddy54 Hey brother can you spare a half dime?

    Exactly what I was told! Her in Maryland ATM's are huge targets. The local drug store had 1 in the front of the store. They put the van through the front door...and pulled the machine out...loaded it up...took it to a location where the poped the machine took the cash and left the atm .
     
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  8. Paddy54

    Paddy54 Hey brother can you spare a half dime?

    And yes the machine was bolted to the floor
     
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  9. Hommer

    Hommer Curator of Semi Precious Coinage Supporter

    There are places in every home where thieves don't care or have time to look. You can hide your valubles in all sorts of places within your home and they would be safe from theft from an intruder, family members are another story. They have days and weeks to figure out where you hide your stuff.

    A safe is mainly fire and storm protection. If it were not for that, 90 percent of safes would not be sold. Your chances of suffering from either one of those is extremely thin, but theft not so slim a chance. By nature if someone sees a safe, it is automatically assumed that anything of value in the whole place, is in that safe.

    Hide your safe. It can be done in unique ways that only the household knows where it is and without knowledge, a tape measure, and blueprints, can't be easily found. Then buy a cheap one and put it in a closet for thieves to find. Bolt it down and use it for storage just don't put detrimental stuff in it.
     
  10. ldhair

    ldhair Clean Supporter

    If the bad guys can get a gun safe on it's side, they can pry the door open. If not, a diamond blade on a cordless saw can cut a hole in the side in just a few minutes.
    Some fire safes can be opened if you freeze the safe. The lining will expand and bust the walls apart.
     
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  11. Clawcoins

    Clawcoins Well-Known Member

    Older, Cheap digital locks are easy to crack if you know which ones they are.

    On some, the face units do not encrypt the code and the backend does not lock out after a certain number of attempts and doesn't require encryption.

    Thus there are portable device apps that you connect the face unit cable to and it just runs through all the possible lock combinations until it unlocks.

    Thus the reason to get a good digital lock that requires encryption.

    There's many digital locks that are based on encrypted communications from the head unit to the backend such as American Security, Sargent and Greenleaf, etc.

    I learned this when my dealer said that digital locks are really good compared to the dials when I replaced my old UL safe with a modern Amsec BF safe. I did research back then (pre 2015ish) to learn more about them in regards to hacking, emp, etc.

    This excludes long lasting quality to prevent the motherboard or solenoid from wearing prematurely too; thus another reason to get a good quality electronic lock. There used to be a YouTube video I saw about this but I cannot find it in a brief search.

    edit: I forgot to mention. someone also makes a Dial Safe Lock Cracker device now too. Just search for "ITL robotic safe cracker"
    That's just goes to show you the modern, fully encrypted electronic locks appear to be "safer" than the dial locks.

    edit: and I found a more modern .. cheap electronic lock cracker video. Search for this on YouTube from March 30, 2017 "Electronic Safe Opened in 10 seconds with Black Box | Mr. Locksmith Video"
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2022
  12. calcol

    calcol Supporter! Supporter

    If you’re looking for protection from professional burglars, the safe should have a UL burglary rating. Without that, the safe can probably entered in a few minutes by a pro, and it won’t be by determining the combination. Non-UL-rated safes can deter casual thieves and some amateurs. In any case, if a robber puts a gun to your head or the head of a family member, the security rating of the safe is immaterial … you’ll open it. Fire ratings are a separate category. However, by the time the fire department is finished though, most fire safe have lots of water in them.

    Best security for valuable coins:

    1. Safe deposit box in a bank that is part of FDIC and Federal Reserve. No, FDIC won’t insure your coins, but member banks must meet certain security requirements for the building and vault. Safe-deposit-only “banks” can have vaults with cardboard ceilings and tinfoil walls if they want. Be sure your box is at least a couple of feet above the floor. Bank vaults are not waterproof. Collectors have had coins, including slabbed coins, in bank vaults damaged by floods.

    plus

    2. Insurance.

    The above is what I do with my expensive coins. A few cheap ones are in a cheap fire safe at home.

    Cal
     
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  13. Vertigo

    Vertigo Did someone say bust?

    Another safe thread or a safe cracking thread? With a cutting torch, anything is possible
     
  14. Clawcoins

    Clawcoins Well-Known Member

    I think the OP was asking if Digital Locks are secure,
    not about the rest of everything.

    Of course Securam appears to have some security certifications. But the OP is going to have to check his specific model as we don't have any of that information .. 'ya know, the specific details.
    SECURAM UL Certification & EMP Resistance - High security Electronic Locks - SECURAM (securamsys.com)

    Of course, if you contact the company themselves of your concerns they may be able to offer more information.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2022
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  15. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    I think I have resigned myself to the fact that my safe is little more than the locks on my doors and if somebody wants in bad enough, they will get in. I have already carried my gold and better coins to the banks safe deposit. I hate that, but I sleep better at night.
     
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  16. Clawcoins

    Clawcoins Well-Known Member

    I know, it's all about one's Risk evaluation and Potential (if one thinks that) of asset appreciation to overall replacement cost vs insured vs overall perspectives.

    A SDB is a low risk, though an ongoing cost. So one has to evaluate what they store is some $$ above it's continuous storage costs. And, even though rare, some type of seizure.

    That versus the cost of storing it yourself in your house in a or multiple safes which is a one time cost.
    All versus the potential crime rate of the area.

    Of course the "better" the safe, the more "secure" it is.

    Your Securam digital lock appears to be a UL Type-1. Unlike the junk you find in big box discount stores selling safes at the lowest price possible with short locking bolts that can be bent out from door flex.

    People talk about bringing a torch. A torch in a wood structure house may need some rethinking especially if the safe is in a tight closet. But there are more specific and easier ways depending upon the safe. But all that requires knowledge and some form of planning, which is usually few in most common house robberies.
     
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  17. desertgem

    desertgem Senior Errer Collecktor Supporter

    Most ATMs have GPS reporting transmitters that begins when a physical connection to the bank is broken. When I served on the board of a local bank , we learned that a small group of $100 bills with serial numbers recorded as bait as if the ATM was opened, they would start to have all local banks be alerted. Almost every bank counts and looks carefully at $100 bills ( or at least that long time ago) Bait Bills.

    One might consider having the safe in their garage if very heavy. If your house catches on fire, you can open the garage door or chop through it with a firemans axe and get the safe outside out before the heat of the fire damages much. IMO,, Jim
     
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  18. Danomite

    Danomite What do you say uh-huh

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    You can have a vault or a safe….. 5 minutes.
     
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  19. calcol

    calcol Supporter! Supporter

    Um ... how to coins and slabs fare in a safe that's torched open? :inpain:

    Cal
     
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  20. Danomite

    Danomite What do you say uh-huh

    Thieves don’t care. Bullion is bullion, and if can’t be traced… Torching a fire rated safes door off, won’t hurt the contents much. There is a fire seal around the door rated at 30 minutes or more.
     
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  21. Clawcoins

    Clawcoins Well-Known Member

    I like the idea of keeping your "very heavy" safe in your garage that you can just quickly pick up and carry away in case of fire. o_O
     
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