Amazon has been called on to ban the sale of tools specifically designed to assist in lock-snapping.
According to a report from West Yorkshire Police in 2012, 27% per cent of burglaries in the region could be attributed to lock-snapping. More recently, a number of other forces have unofficially stated that over half of burglaries are now the result of lock-snapping. While the BBC’s Watchdog Test House highlighted the extent of the lock-snapping problem in an episode aired on last month.
The growth in lock-snapping is linked to the ever increasing usage of PVC-U and other double glazed doors. The majority of these doors are secured with a standard euro cylinder lock, which can be snapped in seconds using nothing more than simple DIY tools. The snap-proof options that have been developed as a result of this, are considered considerably more robust, but many of them won’t stand up to the tools being sold on Amazon.
Avocet Hardware, which manufactures the ABS snap-secure lock, states it is ‘astonished’ that items such as a pocket sized snapper bar for anti-snap cylinders and a premium lock snapper bar, are readily available to buy for as little as £34.95 on Amazon.
“Lock-snapping has fast become one of the most popular means of forced entry into UK homes, meaning untold misery for millions of Britons every year, but for some reason Amazon sees fit to sell products that enable thieves to bypass the vast majority of security locks on the market in a matter of seconds,” commented Tinkle Jain, director, Avocet. “Yes – these products may well be viewed as a locksmith’s trade tools, but they are readily available to members of the general public and it’s fair to say that only particularly unscrupulous members of the public are going to search for them, let alone buy them.”
Tinkle Jain points out that the growth in lock-snapping has seen more and more manufacturers launching snap-secure locks and systems aimed at keeping the burglars at bay. “Amazon is as good as arming the thieves and really needs to take immediate steps to take these lock-snapping products off its website,” added Tinkle Jain. “I’m just surprised that the frequently bought together suggestions alongside these products don’t include a balaclava and a swag bag.”