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The freedom to move in and out of one’s home, without worrying about getting locked out, is a major relief for many. Considering this, ‘key-less’ digital locks are a promising solution, as they help to simplify people’s lifestyles. Among the range of digital door lock systems available today, biometric door locking products are currently the dominant segment. This can be attributed to their lower cost and ease of accessing doors, without having to carry physical tools, such as cards or keys. Nevertheless, many people hesitate to adopt these locks, owing to numerous myths regarding electronic locking systems. Here are six such myths that we try to dispel, for the successful adoption of electronic locks.
Myth 1: Electronic locks will not function during power cuts
The fact is that most of the electronic locks run on battery power. Hence, the lock continues to function, even when there is a power cut.
The batteries can power the lock for at least two years. Moreover, built-in power sensors inform home owners, weeks before the battery drains out. This gives enough time to replace the nine-volt battery (which is available at any local hardware store), just like you would replace the batteries of a television’s remote controller. In addition, electronic locks have a manual mechanical key override too.
Myth 2: I will get locked-in, in case of a fire at home
Electronic locks today have advanced sensors that detect fire and automatically provide access to the owners. This is a major advantage of electronic locks, because in case of a fire, opening a mechanical lock involves more work and time, as compared to an electronic lock.
Myth 3: Electronic locks are difficult to operate
Advanced electronic locks have backlit keypads and touchscreens features, so that one does not have to fumble about in the dark, to unlock door. Electronic locks are extremely easy to operate, once installed and programmed properly.
If an individual wishes to install the lock by themselves, all the good brands have instructions manuals and offer online video tutorials. On the other hand, having a professional install the electronic lock, eliminates confusion. You can also have all your questions answered, while a professional locksmith is present.
Myth 4: They are bulky
One does not have to sacrifice interior styling for greater security. A vast majority of electronic locks come in different body styles, finishes and trims, to blend with one’s home décor.
Good brands offer products that are weather-proof. Therefore, the buttons are guaranteed not to wear off. Most electronic locks also feature a fingerprint-resistant touchscreen that works in the rain or even while wearing gloves. However, an RFID access card is recommended, in case you wish to boost security.
Myth 6: Electronic locks can be hacked
Hacking an electronic lock is very difficult. Most locks also offer multiple modes of authentication – for example, via PIN, smartcard, manual key and biometric accessibility options. Some advanced locks also offer you a scrambled PIN option, which means that you may press any number of keys before or after your password and yet, the lock will open. This is an effective way of safe-keeping your password, if someone is with you.
(The author is executive vice-president and business head, Godrej Locking Solutions and Systems)