It's late. You've had a busy day at work and all you want to do is get indoors and sink into the sofa for the evening. But you hit a snag at the first hurdle. You get to the door and realise you can't find your keys. You've never lost them before, but there's always a first.
Lost keys can make life really difficult for anyone. Your car needs them to operate. Your front door needs them to let you in. Your office might even need them to let you work. So what can you do to help prevent lost keys?
It's worth getting to know your neighbours well, if you don't already, and giving them a spare set of keys to your house. You'll be thankful on that rainy day when you've lost them or forgotten them somewhere. Getting access to your property is much quicker this way as you don't need to sit around waiting for someone to get there – that is assuming your neighbours are in.
If you have a good friend you can trust or family member, you can always give them a spare set of keys to your house too, or even a spare car key. Whatever you do, don't hide a spare key under a pot or bin in the garden. Thieves are well aware of these common practices and if your house is targeted, it'll make their job so much easier.
Bulking up your keys can actually make them more difficult to lose. Dropping a big bunch of keys is a lot more obvious than dropping a key on it's own. The same applies to carrying them in your pockets. You can easily feel a big bunch of keys dropping out of your pockets. Large bunches of keys are easier to spot too.
Security keys are much more difficult to copy because they usually require a code to be given to a key cutter or they have to be ordered through a special service with authorisation. If keys like this are lost, it reduces the chances of anyone copying them and encourages their safe return.
It can be tempting to write your name and address, or telephone number on a key ring but be aware that if a criminal finds your lost keys, it makes it easy for them to know where you live or what property they belong to.
Calling a lock smith should be the last resort really. It can be very expensive getting a locksmith out because not only will they charge a call out fee depending on what time of day it is, they will also usually need to break a lock in order to get through it. So you'll end up not only paying for their time, but also a replacement lock and set of keys. This can often cost several hundred pounds. So make sure someone else has a spare set of keys to at least enable you access to your home or vehicle until you can find your lost keys or get a replacement.
iFoundThis has a simple system that enables anyone who comes across a set of keys to return them to their owner without knowing which property those keys belong to. A small key ring with an iFoundThis code printed on it is attached onto a set of keys. If you lose your keys and someone else finds them, the key ring has a clear set of instructions guiding the finder to enter a simple code on any smartphone/device to notify you. You can then decide to either make direct arrangements with the finder to collect the keys or use the 'Relay Recovery' service that gets your keys back to you without the finder ever knowing anything about you. This is particularly useful to fend off criminals. If for example the finder decides to clone your keys, they can't use them if they don't know what property they belong to. The same applies to vehicle keys. If they don't know what car the keys belong to or what neighbourhood the car is in, it's unlikely they'll ever be able to use any cloned keys to steal your property. And because keys don't really have particular any value to anyone else, you stand a good chance of getting your lost keys back wherever they are.
Written by Andrew Simeou
2nd Jun 2019
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