By Frank Fourchalk
Last week I had the pleasure of running into Ron Cole an old locksmith friend of mine. I’m sure many of you remember Ron when he owned and operated “Coles Locksmith” for many years on the Peninsula. It’s hard to forget Ron’s distinguished accent, brilliant wit and remarkable sense of humor.
After we exchanged pleasantries, it was straight to “Security Issues”. I decided to light Ron’s fuse with a loaded question, “So what security issue is bugging you to-day?” He exploded with a one word answer, “Keys”.
Concerned with the low level of importance most people place on their keys, Ron brought up a good point. It’s amazing how we take our keys for granted, until they’re gone. I’ve had calls from people who were devastated over the loss of their keys.
I know we have all experienced forgetful moments when we’ve left the keys in the car or found them hanging out of the front door lock. But I’m specifically talking about the conscious negligence of keys. The person who leaves their house and car keys in their coat pocket and knowingly hangs the coat on a public coat rack.
I’ve seen young mothers leave bunches of keys on restaurant tables, unaware of their whereabouts while tending to junior. Then there’s the person who places the keys to their worldly possessions in the hands of a mechanic for vehicle repairs or how about the “pitch and putt” attendant who demands your car keys as collateral for a worn out set of rental golf clubs.
We even need to evaluate the necessity of having keys hanging around the confines of our own residence. I can’t tell you how many homes I’ve had to re-key because somebody broke in and stole a set of house keys. I see it all the time, keys hanging on hooks near front, back, kitchen or laundry room doors. So why do we leave house and car keys hanging around our homes? I can explain it in a word, “Convenience”.
We are living in a convenient world geared to a fast pace lifestyle. We want “fast and easy”. But unfortunately so does the bad guy. These losers are professionals at focusing their sights on exposed keys. Once spotted, these hawk-like thieves swoop in snatch the keys and head out the door before anybody even notices. The only thing these creeps leave behind is a huge headache for the victim.
So why are we giving crooks the opportunity to score at our expense? The answer is obvious. We have a built in trust factor which gives the bad guy the upper hand. An upper hand that often finds itself wrapped around the steering wheel of our cars or worse yet the keys to our homes.
So unless you want a stranger driving around in your car or paying your home an unscheduled visit, you better take Ron’s advise and “know where your keys are.”