JUST BECAUSE YOUR DESK AND FILE CABINET ARE LOCKED DOESN’T MEAN THEY ARE SECURE.
How many offices store confidential information in desks and file cabinets and assume it is secure? Most offices handle sensitive information such as research and development for new products, personnel files, etc. In addition, employees and managers have also been known to store cash, checks, and even bonds or securities in locked desks or file cabinets.
The FBI reports that employee theft is the fastest growing crime in the United States.
The U.S Chamber of Commerce reports that one of every three business failures is the result of employee theft. While money is the most common item that is stolen, company property and product designs and trade formulas are also among high-value items know to be stolen by employees
Just because something is locked does not mean it is secure. It really depends on the quality of the lock. Most furniture manufacturers use cheap, simple locks on desks and file cabinets. Chances are many of the desks in an office came from the same manufacturer and can be opened with the same key. The same is true of file cabinets. This is particularly troublesome because that allows any employee to access most desks and file cabinets in the building.
Even if the business owners took the extra precaution of insisting that every file cabinet have a different lock and key, most file cabinets have standard locks that have the key code number printed on them. An ambitious employee could search around the company to find a key that matches the file cabinet code number or order a duplicate from the file manufacturer.
Most employees would not have a very hard time picking the lock on an office desk or file cabinet because the locks are not very complex and provide little security.
A better alternative is to:
Store your more valuable assets in an office safe or a burglary-rated file cabinet designed to withstand break-ins.
Lesser value assets should be kept in a file cabinet that is secured by an interlocking slide bar on the outside of the file cabinet and locked with a high-security padlock.
Do not store items of value in desk drawers. Consider upgrading locks on the desk drawers to a better than a standard grade.
File cabinet locking bars are generally mounted on the side of the file cabinet running from top to bottom. When in the locked position, the locking bar is pushed flat against the file cabinet and secured with a padlock preventing entry to the drawers. When unlocked, the file bar swings away from the drawers allowing entry to the drawer contents.
High security padlocks are different than traditional padlocks. Most are made of a reinforced steel alloy that resists cutting, drilling, pulling, etc. Key programs for the locks prevent unauthorized key duplication.
A commercial locksmith can easily install interlocking slide bars and high securities padlocks on your file cabinets and, at the same time, upgrade the locks on desk drawers in your office to improve security. Many can sell and install an office safe as well. Don’t leave your office valuables unprotected.
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