Practical Lock Picking

Practical Lock Picking

A Physical Penetration Tester's Training Guide

1st Edition - July 27, 2010

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  • Author: Deviant Ollam
  • eBook ISBN: 9781597496124

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Practical Lock Picking: A Physical Penetration Tester’s Training Guide introduces the reader to the basic principles of lock picking. The book combines both easy-to-follow, step-by-step lessons, and tutorials that will help security-conscious people learn how to open most of the locks they may encounter during auditing or assessment work. It covers the fundamentals of pin tumbler and wafer locks; the basics of picking; beginner and advanced training; and quick entry techniques. Whether the student will be hired at some point to penetrate security or simply trying to harden his or her own defenses, this book is essential. This instructional manual focuses on pin tumbler locks, the construction and function of which are illustrated with the aid of several diagrams. Everything from straightforward lock picking to quick-entry techniques like shimming, bumping, and bypassing are explained and shown. Guides and exercises demonstrate the use of basic lock-picking tools in order to manipulate and open these locks. The text also describes the most common "alternative" designs of pin tumbler locks and summarizes the tools and techniques that can be effective against them. It comes with a DVD filled with indispensable lock picking videos and color photos. This book is an ideal reference for penetration testers, security consultants, and IT security professionals as well as hackers.

Key Features

  • Detailed photos make learning as easy as picking a lock
  • DVD is filled with indispensible lock picking videos and color photos
  • Extensive appendix details tools and toolkits currently available for all your lock picking needs


Penetration testers, security consultants, and IT security professionals, hackers

Table of Contents

  • Foreword


    About the Author

    Ethical Considerations


    Chapter 1 Fundamentals of pin tumbler and wafer locks

    Pin tumbler locks

    The plug

    Pin tumbler lock operation

    Wafer locks

    Wafer lock construction

    Wafer lock operation

    Better wafer locks


    Chapter 2 The basics of picking: Exploiting weaknesses

    Exploiting Weaknesses in Locks

    Manufacturing imperfections

    Mechanical imperfections lead to security weaknesses

    Picking with a Lifting Technique

    The problem of too much tension

    The peril of overlifting

    Picking with a Raking Technique

    The half diamond pick

    Tension tools

    Jiggler tools


    Chapter 3 Beginner training: How to get very good, very fast

    A Word on Equipment

    Cutaway locks

    Progressively pinned locks

    The importance of a vice

    The Basics of Field Stripping

    Starter Exercises

    Inserting and moving the pick

    Feeling the spring

    Setting a single pin stack

    Learning Exercises

    Slow down, lighten up

    Two pin stacks

    Three pin stacks

    Four pin stacks and beyond

    Challenging Yourself Further

    Deep reach practice

    Blindly mix and match

    Using Rakes and Jigglers

    Techniques of tool movement

    Wafer Lock Exercises

    Progressive wafer locks

    Tensioning wafer locks

    Extra Hints

    Which way to turn

    Plugs stuck upside-down


    Chapter 4 Advanced training: Learning some additional skills

    Pick-resistant pins

    Pins with lips

    Pins with serrations

    Coordinated pick-resistant components

    Specialized picking techniques


    Specialized picking tools

    Featherweight tension tools

    Bogotá jiggler rakes

    Practice exercises

    Spooled progressive practice locks

    Pick-resistant keyways

    Real-world locks that offer greater challenges

    Defiant brand door locks

    Master Lock color-plated series and fusion series

    American Lock padlocks

    Advanced security pin cylinder


    Chapter 5 Quick-entry tricks: Shimming, bumping, and bypassing

    Padlock shims

    The Deviant beer can shim

    Double shimming

    Unshimmable padlocks

    Snapping and bumping

    Snap guns

    Bump keys

    Comb picks


    Using comb picks

    American Lock bypass tool

    Door bypassing

    Slip attacks against latch bolts

    Triggering door handles and push bars


    Chapter 6 They all come tumbling down: Pin tumblers in other configurations

    Tubular locks

    Inside a tubular lock

    Pick tools for tubular locks

    Picking tubular locks

    Odd styles of tubular locks

    Cruciform locks

    Manually picking a cruciform lock

    Cross lock picks

    Dimple locks

    The secret weakness in 90% of padlocks


    Appendix: Guide to tools and toolkits


Product details

  • No. of pages: 256
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Syngress 2010
  • Published: July 27, 2010
  • Imprint: Syngress
  • eBook ISBN: 9781597496124

About the Author

Deviant Ollam

Deviant Ollam's first and strongest love has always been teaching. A graduate of the New Jersey Institute of Technology's Science, Technology, and Society program, he is always fascinated by the interplay that connects human values and social trends to developments in the technical world. While earning his BS degree at NJIT, Deviant also completed the History degree program federated between that institution and Rutgers University. While paying the bills as a security auditor and penetration testing consultant with The CORE Group, Deviant is also a member of the Board of Directors of the U.S. division of TOOOL, The Open Organisation Of Lockpickers. Every year at DEFCON and ShmooCon, Deviant runs the Lockpick Village, and he has conducted physical security training sessions at Black Hat, DeepSec, ToorCon, HackCon, ShakaCon, HackInTheBox, CanSecWest, ekoparty, and the United States Military Academy at West Point. His favorite Amendments to the U.S. Constitution are, in no particular order, the 1st, 2nd, 9th, and 10th.

Affiliations and Expertise

Member of the Board of Directors of the U.S. division of TOOOL, The Open Organisation Of Lockpickers and Security Auditor and Penetration Testing Consultant with The CORE Group

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