Make your own TSA universal luggage keys

Originally published at:

years ago, when a friend left his keys on the dash of a locked car, the locksmith made a copy manually by looking at the key…


It’s pointless to lock your luggage even with TSA approved locks. 9/10 they just cut them off anyway and it really does nothing to deter thieves (who more often than not are TSA employees).


Good thing it’s the FBI that wants master encryption keys because I’m sure they’d keep them sooooooper safe and never ever accidentally leak them like this.


The only thing a TSA lock is good for is keeping the zipper from opening on its own initiative until they cut it off.


Another justification for never flying unless there’s a time sensitive situation and there’s no other option.

The entire industry is focused on dehumanizing everyone that uses it, for what? Getting somewhere else faster? Doesn’t seem worth it.


This is a sneaky article about leaving encryption back-doors for the NSA/FBI … or everyone should understand how they are related.


Do we not know the pen-in-the-zipper trick that makes the locks irrelevant?
That’s the money move.


That one labeled TSA001 looks like you’d need a bobby pin, paper clip or some other such sophisticated device to pick it.

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Now when a thief gets your bag home they can carefully make a key and not decrease the resale value of your luggage.


Many original keys have the pin number engraved on the face of the key. If you can read that you don’t even need to guess.

Why bother picking it at all? A set of confiscated fingernail clippers could cut it off


I actually mistakenly locked the key into my luggage one time. Because the key and lock were labeled so clearly, I was able to go to the local K-Mart and buy a new lock with the same key pattern to unlock my bag.

And yes, I understand that the article was a metaphor.


If I did make myself a set of these keys, would I be breaking any laws?

My suitcase was made in 1938, and I don’t have a key to lock it with. But I don’t think my smelly socks are worth that much to the TSA. Unless there are agents who delight in smelly socks.

Even if it is illegal, it is illegal only if you get caught.

They could always try using them in a drug deal.

Speaking of zippers… Why are so few suitcases available today with something more robust than a zipper as the sole closure?

I went shopping for a new suitcase (full-size, checked baggage) yesterday, and nearly every suitcase available had only zippers, no latch. Most models available offered a “control panel” that locked the zippers in place with a TSA-compliant lock.

I prefer a suitcase that is resistant to the “bic pen” trick. Even if the TSA prevents me from locking it when flying, there are other situations where a functional and tamper-evident lock is preferable.


Newer TSA locks have a mark that appears when it’s been opened and requires the combination to reset so not totally undetectable anymore.


I am pretty sure its actually Allegory.

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