Door lock-style locks that can be remotely activated by anyone with the right technology will soon be a reality in Australia, with an industry body calling for the ability to set the lock to be automatically triggered if the door is opened.
The Australian Lockdown Association (ALA) released a submission to the National Electricity Market Regulation Agency (NERA) last week, calling for a mandatory security feature that can automatically trigger a lock.
“When a door is unlocked, the user is told the lock is off and should open the door,” the submission said.
It also suggests locking doors remotely could help prevent the emergence of new types of lock-picking devices.
Currently, a remote trigger to open the lock or lock a door in a locked room requires the use of a key that’s attached to a keyring, the ALA submission said, and the keyring has to be manually entered.
This is an issue with “many” door lock-type locks, ALA senior policy officer Greg Smith said.
“Many of these locks are not secure, and we’ve seen them used by criminals to commit serious crimes,” he said.
“The keyring needs to be physically present when the lock’s been opened, and it has to open from a certain angle to get the right lock.”
“The locking system needs to work by the time the doorbell rings and the lock has been released.”
The submission said many door lock locks would only work in certain areas, and they would not work at all if the key was not in place when the door was opened.
“This is where the new door lock comes in,” Mr Smith said, pointing to a recent attack on a home in Sydney.
A Sydney police spokesman said the attack involved two men who were armed with a hammer, which they smashed through a wall and into the home, before jumping out.
He said police were “monitoring” the attack and “looking at ways to prevent it from happening in the future”.
“We would encourage people to be mindful of their own security when opening and locking doors and to be aware of any security requirements they might need to meet,” he added.
New security features being rolled out in Australia are already in place in the US, where the FBI said it is testing security measures for new locks that have been deployed on buildings and on the roads.
There are no locks in Australia yet, but a new “door lock” feature has been developed for the Australian market, which has already been deployed in the States.
The company is now working on a product that will allow the door to be unlocked from within a locked home.
But the company said the product will not be available in Australia until at least March.