It is a particular uncomfortable situation that you are at the airport or a bus station and discover that your entire luggage has disappeared or has been misplaced. And there is a big issue, your suitcases were not very well secure, and they are very easy to be opened by anyone. There have been cases where airport employees have taken objects from people’s suitcases and they have to spend months complaining about the returning of their property. To avoid these situations, most people have started to use luggage locks; but questions arise about how secure and protective these locks truly are; below there are some issues that you, as a traveler, need to know about the devices-
Something to be aware first
Remember when you travel, privacy rights are not included in your flight rights. Any airport security worker can check your luggage without any complaint from your part. Whether an arbitrary or targeted search, no one can stop the Security Agents to go through your suitcases and check all your belongings. In the name of security, they can perform any action with your luggage, even cutting the locks in the most extreme of the cases if they consider it necessary.
Now your luggage is more vulnerable that before since the locks have been permanently damages. Due to this reason, some government agencies such as TSA (Transport Security Administration) gets into an agreement with some lock manufacturers and the Agency workers are provided with master keys in order to open luggage without damaging the locks. But there is not all about these checking department, they also have the right to remove any lock if they think it is necessary; and they do not reattach it, secure it or even worse they don’t return it at all
Some Troubles with checking luggage at the Airport
These lock damages have not stopped even after manufactures provide master keys to airport security agents and passengers have complained about so many times. Even the most cooperative of people allow agents to open their luggage, instead of using a master key they see with amaze that the locks are forcibly opened; or in the slightest of cases, they are not placed in the right position after the checking.
In order to avoid these sort of trouble, people start using another sort of lock that do not compile with the TSA standards, especially after the specifications of the master keys used at airports have been placed online, giving the possibility for anyone with a 3D printer to get a copy of it. There is also evidence that these keys copies have been made of brass in order to give them more usage frequency. So there is a high possibility that all of the master keys have been cloned in the last few years.
There has been no official statement from the security agency about the hacked keys or the treatment some passengers get at the moment of checking their luggage. Even manufacturers have not pronounced any single word related to the updating of the security features for the keyways of the locks involved in the irregular situations.
In few words, there is no possible change in the way luggage locks are designed and the compilation of the security regulations do not provide any satisfactory feeling to travelers about the state of their suitcases and the security of their property. Although there are very different ways to open a suitcase without the owner’s consent, most of the luggage locks are violated by cutting them using a pair of small diagonal pliers or picked in the blink of an eye.
What passengers are supposed to do
One popular decision made by passengers recently is avoiding the usage of TSA approved locks; but surprisingly they have found out a baggage check note emoted by the airport security agency even when their luggage seem properly secure and locked. People are wondering how they checked their property without having a master key for that particular lock, since there are not master keys for any brand of locks in the marker. The response is that security officers do not have to time to pick the lock; they bypass the lock instead.
Using a standard pen, any person can puncture the zipper on a bag. The agent will move the locked zipper to one side and puncture the teeth of the zipper track. This way they have complete access to the bag and check all the content. Once they are over with it, the agent simply moves the zipper to the other side of the track, and it seems that the bag was never open away from the owner’s sight.
But a stronger lock without any zipper does not mean that you luggage is not going to be opened. In this case, suitcases are opened by cutting the fabric with a single slice using a box cutter or a knife, providing agents a full access to your belongings and damaging your suitcase in the checking process.
There is little thing to do when your luggage happens to be checked at the airport, and the protective ways to secure your luggage is also not worthy to deal with criminals since the suitcases and bags are not very secure items nowadays.
Some concluding words
As you can see, everything related to the luggage lock security is not a big deal to consider since your luggage can be damaged when security officers check it. The only way that your luggage will be safe is if the security airport officers decide not to check your luggage when travel.
And if you decide to use other locks to protect you properties, be aware that this government office will open them while checking your baggage. In order to feel safe when travelling, it is important that you carry no valuable things in your luggage; thus, you will escape from the stress that is coming after something with a sentimental or monetary value disappeared.