Author: Robert Lerner

Misstep 6: Moneygrab

Key in Register

This one is less about what you’re seeing, and more about temptation. This cash register has the drawer key sitting directly in the lock it is supposed to protect. Cashiers should be performing “NO SALES” if they need access to the cash drawer without a transaction. This keeps a record of times an employee accesses […]

Misstep 5: Getting High in California

By getting high, of course, I’m talking about the relative distance from the ground. In this case, I added three stars to the image. The first one is the “Yellow Star”, I’m not going into a lot of detail here except to say that Misstep 2: Security-As-An-Annoyance goes into greater detail about why a fence […]

Misstep 4: Pretty Friggin’ Suite

Another example of “A chain is as strong as its weakest link”, this door was inside of my suite during my stay in Los Angeles. I assume it is for cleaning supplies, coffee supplies, or similar so that the room service folks can save time not transporting all of this without an elevator. But lets […]

Misstep 3: Flow Freakin’ Way

From my trip to LA, I’ve seen several of these water control valves placed above ground. (Must be nice, in Chicago, these guys would turn into ice and destroy themselves). An oddity is the choice of security — a wire mesh that stops folks from disabling the water. This could affect fire systems, but those […]

Misstep 2: Security-As-An-Annoyance

I’m in Los Angeles, CA this week and my hotel has a pool. Like many hotel pools, they lock it down at a silly early hour. They also keep the area locked to ensure that the pool isn’t being abused by non-guests. With several different shifts of hotel operators, and this hotel’s nature of having […]

Misstep 1: A Chain is as strong as its weakest link

I wanted to start a new blog feature where I share occasional security missteps just sitting in public. These bikes are not cheap, generally starting at $500 and climbing rapidly. This bike is held in place by a typical U-bolt lock, but the front tire is held in by a quick connect near the bottom […]

Part 1: Outdoor Security Lighting (The Attack)

Building exteriors are often well lit to keep out physical attacks and to enable CCTV footage without requiring infrared emitters on the cameras. Often times, these will use “electric eyes” to detect light, and when present, turn off exterior lights to conserve energy. Typically these sensors are made with a CdS cell (cadmium sulfide). They […]

Jackpotting Parking Meters: A Series

I usually spend quite a bit of time talking about security problems I’ve identified, and a little less time talking about solutions to those problems. I don’t often talk about quantifying risk or products that I’ve identified as being particularly secure. Today, this changes. I walked into a local antique shop hoping to find some […]

Lockboxes and Key Space Exhaustion

On a rare occasion, I’ll have a chance to check out a thrift shop or antique store and see what sorts of locks or security equipment they have for sale. I’ve wanted to check out those realtor lockboxes for some time, but didn’t want to spring $25 for minimal entertainment value. Today, I stopped in […]