Attacking masterkeyed systems

August 6th, 2019

A couple of years ago one of our members, Jos Weyers, came up with a novel method to attack masterkeysystems. If you know Jos, it’s probably not at all surprising that this method mainly consists of impressioning. Attacking masterkeyed systems that way has several distinct advantages; no need to take a lock apart, no need for huge numbers of blanks, no need to have access to a working key, no guessing if your new key is indeed the master you are looking for, to name just a few. After keeping this knowledge within a rather small community for some time, it is now out in the open due to a talk Jos did at OzSecCon in Melbourne this year.Which off course includes live demo’s right there on stage.

https://twitter.com/kylieengineer/status/1139694231964938240

(masterkeysystem supplied and pinned up by Holly Poer , “southpark-esque lock animations” by JanWillem Markus)

Key duplication

July 16th, 2019

Although at Toool, we normally pick locks without having a key, it is also interesting to occasionally look at other ways of opening a lock. I got my hands on a Quick Key Easy Pro kit from Multipick (not affiliated) and decided to test it out. I took it to the Toool meeting with three locks to test it out on.

First up was a BKS Janus lock. I combines the two substances to make the mould, but spent too much time kneading it, it was already partially hardened when I wanted to press the key in. The second try, I hurried up a bit more and it worked nicely. I heated up a pellet of metal and poured it in the mould.

After a short wait, out came the key.

This key is quite sturdy and is thus easy to create using this technique. But the tolerances are quite small. Does the key work?

Yes, it does! And that for the first key I am making with this kit. I’m impressed. Because this key was a success, I decided to take on an even bigger challenge and duplicate a DOM Diamant key. This key is very hard to duplicate, as it has very thin pieces of metal going down the key. The first attempt yielded a key that was incomplete. The metal had not gone all the way in. I melted that key again, made it slightly warmer and tried again. The second time, the key that came out had a hole in the middle, but it had metal in all the important places. And what do you know: this key worked first time around!

Jos made a video of me duplicating the key. I hope you enjoy watching as much as I enjoyed copying the key. Sorry for talking Dutch in the video 🙂

Walter.

Lishi Schlage impressioning tool

July 11th, 2019

The company Lishi is mostly known for their decoding tools for several brands of cars. Now, they also have decoding tools for Schlage and Kwikset locks, that works similarly.

Although not as much a sport as lockpicking using standard picking tools, we are always eager at Toool to try out new tools. Not long ago, Jan-Willem already tweeted about the tool:

Now, we also have a demonstration of the Schlage tool, done by Jos:

Enjoy!

Walter.

East German secret policy and lockpicking

July 11th, 2019

More than 12 years ago, Oli Diederichsen wrote a book about impressioning. It had quite an effect and nowadays we have impressioning championships in which working keys are filed in amazing times.

And now, Oli has written a new book (called “Stasi Secret Service Tools: Die geheimen Schlossöffnungswerkzeuge der Abteilung VIII“), about the former East German secret service and their research into locks and lock opening. They made combs (called “heavenly key”) and special opening tools for Trabant cars, the only car a normal person in Eastern Germany could buy. But they were also interested in locks from other places, including high security locks.

At the previous LockCon, Oli already showed his ongoing work including some really interesting pictures of the Stasi tools. The book is available in German only.

The Room

March 11th, 2019

Toool NL organised “The Room” as a side-event of the 2019 edition of the <a href=”https://hackerhotel.nl” target=_blank>Hacker Hotel</a> conference. Bugs, scenario, gameplay, set dressing and props by Jan-Willem, Rob and Jos. The talk about The Room is available on YouTube:

All vids recorded by Bix, with gear supplied by duh-events.nl, except the POVvid, which was recorded by https://leukemensen.nl/.
Camera’s were still running when Jos went through the room to snap pictures for the (impromptu) talk above, which gives a good indication of where (almost) all of the treasures were hidden. These are links to videos of some teams running “the Room”:

It was great fun!

Opening a vintage lock

February 3rd, 2019

A while back, somebody visited one of our Toool meetings. This gentleman brought with him a punch clock device. I am not sure in what setting it was used, but found one example on the internet of such a clock being used in a prison, where the warden would register their rounds through the facility

Punch clock

The keys were lost, so we were asked to try to open it without damage. The lock looked easy enough..

Still, we could not open it fully.

In the end, Jos took it home to look at it a bit further and in the end he was able to open it. We had not expected a three lever lock when we started.

Finally, we had a nice view of the insides, where you can see the mechanism to transport a paper tape and an ink ribbon.

Lockpicking escape rooms

December 25th, 2018

Eric runs a lock shop (Au P’tit Clou Serrurerie) in Belgium, in the city of Beauraing (near Dinant and also near a degree confluence point). He has also set up a few escape rooms with a lockpicking angle. If you’ve ever been in an escape room, you know they often involve locks to be opened, to get to the next stage. But the the escape rooms Eric designed, are completely in a lock theme. One is based on the story of Charles Hobbs. Hobbs was the first to defeat the security of the locks of Jeremiah Chubb and Joseph Bramah. We still call the tools he used ‘Hobbs Hooks’.

When Eric saw the talk of Tim Jenkin at LockCon 2017, he was inspired to build another escape room about his amazing story of escaping from a Pretoria jail as well. So if you would like to relive that experience, be sure to visit Trésors Cachés!

Toool on the BBC (again)

December 9th, 2018

At LockCon, we had some guests who were shooting footage for the BBC. They followed a few British lockpickers, including Nigel and made an item for the One Show.

It aired last week and you can view it below.

Lockpicking in France

November 25th, 2018

A week ago, I visited the French lockpicking group, l’Association des Crocheteurs de France. They regularly have meetings in Paris. But last week, they had combined their meeting with lockpicking competitions and lectures (also in Paris).

There was a nice crowd. The ACF has been able to find a nice place in Paris to meet, in the 11th arrondissement. The lockpicking competition was like that in the Netherlands, where you are divided in groups and every group gets locks, given out by the organisation. Winners of each group go to the semi-finals and then the finals. What was interesting, was that the locks were dimple locks. Although the French lockpicking group is quite new (founded 3 years ago), they chose to make it difficult!

But, there were a number of people who were very skilled. I also participated. I struggled a bit with the French rule that you must use a tensioner and are not allowed to tension the cam directly. I got into the semi-finals but not the finals. But this is just an excuse of course, the three finalists were very good! 🙂

ACF competition

The final consisted of three rounds of 30(!) minutes. After that, the top-3 was known: 1st place for BilLock, 2nd for Cinok and 3rd for BisBis. Congratulations!

ACF winners 2018

After the competition (and dinner), there were four interesting lectures. One was about what you can deduce by just looking at a lock. The person who has organised the whole thing, Fabien, also gave a lecture. It was about a popular (but very expensive) French lock, that looks like an impossible-to-pick lever lock, but in fact there are several ways of defeating it, as Fabien showed.

Fabien talking

If you live in France, be sure to visit them!

LockCon 2019!

November 23rd, 2018

Yes – we are still in 2018. But.. the date for LockCon 2019 is already known!

LockCon 2019 will be held October 25-27, 2019, in Castle De Berckt in Baarlo, Netherlands (the same place as previous years). Arrival the 24th in the evening is possible, as is leaving the 28th if you wish.

Registration will be possible a number of months before the event starts, so no need to mail us already, this is just so you know when to reserve LockCon in your agendas.