This page lists words and phrases often used about safe locks and their features, with explanations of the possible meaning of each phrase.

ATM: Stands for Automated Teller Machine, otherwise known as a cash machine.

Audit: On locks which have an audit feature, data about lock openings and other activity is recorded in the lock body’s memory, and can later be retrieved. Generally, retrieval of audit data requires PC software and peripheral equipment, to download the data from the lock. In some cases, if the lock system has a display, some information can be viewed using the keypad screen.

Audit, no time and date: In lock systems with very basic audit facility, the lock openings are recorded in order of occurrence, without information about the time and date that the openings took place.

Audit, with time and date: In lock systems that have a time and date audit, there is a counter within the lock that measures the amount of time that passes between each audit event (openings, adding users etc.) A time and date for each event can therefore be calculated using the PC’s time and date. This method is subject to some inaccuracy in the case of a power loss, because the counter stops measuring the time, or in case the PC’s time and date is inaccurate.

Audit, RTC with real time and date: RTC stands for Real Time Clock. In lock systems with a comprehensive management audit, there is an internal clock in the keypad, with a secondary lithium-ion back up battery which keeps time and date. The audit data is therefore written to the lock’s memory with the time and date shown on the keypad. RTC audit is the most accurate (As long as the keypad’s clock is kept at the correct time)

Automatic DST: DST stands for Daylight Savings Time, and means that in a lock system which has an internal clock, the time is changed automatically for summertime and wintertime. Depending on the lock, this either needs to be programmed as an algorithm, or the specific dates must be programmed into the lock, which in some cases is undertaken at the point of manufacture.

Bolt monitoring: This may refer to a connected system such as an alarm, monitoring the status of the bolt as to whether it is open or closed. It may refer to a special feature of some electronic locks which allows the keypad to sound a warning if the bolt has been left open for a specified period of time. It may also refer to the possibility of wiring a door switch into the lock so that the lock’s audit (and/or any connected system) can record both the position of the lock’s bolt, and whether the safe door is open or closed.

Boltworks: Moving mechanisms within safe doors which interact with a safe lock to either secure or open the door.

Bolt force: The specification for certain types of lock bolt as to the force that can be exerted to either push or pull connected boltworks.

CIT: Stands for Cash In Transit, and refers to the movement of cash from one place to another.

Clock drift: In lock systems which have an internal clock, clock drift refers to the clock eventually running slow (or sometimes fast) as compared with real time. Clock drift occurs in any electronic device which does not have a connection to a central server to maintain the correct time. It also occurs in wall clocks and watches, but is not often observed due to the fact that time is manually changed every 6 months for daylight savings time. In lock systems which have Automatic DST, there is not the 6-monthly manual time change and therefore over time, the clock can run out of sync with real time. It is advisable to periodically check the lock’s time to ensure ongoing accuracy. More information about clock drift can be found on Wikipedia.

Closing periods: Similar to holiday locking periods, on locks where a timelock schedule is in operation, closing periods are dates which can be programmed to prevent access on what would normally be an open period, such as for public holidays.

Code denial: Means the same as disable, codes can be temporarily denied or disabled, for example, whilst a user is on holiday.

Codes expiry: A feature in some lock systems which requires that a code is changed after a set period of time, or that a code self-deletes if it is not used after a set period of time.

Comb lock: Shortened version of combination lock. Generally used to refer to mechanical combination locks operated by turning a dial, but can also be used to refer to electronic combination locks.

Confirmation window: Means the same as open window – the period of time after time delay has elapsed, during which a code may be entered to open the lock.

Dallas key: Also known as a Fob, a Dallas key is a computer chip housed in a metal or plastic casing, which can be associated to a user, requiring a physical key in addition to a code to open the lock system. In some lock systems, the key can be used without a code, if the user is in dual mode with a code-holding users. A Dallas key may also be used to program locks and download audit.

Deadbolt lock: A safe lock which has a rectangular bolt. The bolt is moved with a spindle connected to either a knob, handle or keypad. When the keypad is turned, the bolt is retracted, and so the keypad must be turned back again to move the bolt into the closed position. Deadbolts are often connected to boltworks.

Direct drive lock: A term used to describe a deadbolt lock, which has a rectangular bolt. The bolt is moved with a spindle connected to either a knob, handle or keypad. When keypad is turned, the bolt is retracted, and so the keypad must be turned back again to move the bolt into the closed position. Deadbolt locks are often connected to bolt works.

Disable: In the context of user management, disabling a code means that it is temporarily made inactive and is not valid to open the lock. The code can be re-enabled at a later stage.

Dual mode: Requires two codes to be entered before the lock will open. In some cases, two codes are also requried to access manager functions.

Duress: Also known as silent alarm, if a user is coerced into opening a safe, they can enter a special variant of their normal code which generates a silent signal to a connected alarm system, notifying others that the safe is being opened under duress.

Dynamic codes: A system developed by Tecnosicurezza allowing one-time, single use opening codes to be generated by software, valid for use on an associated MiniTech or TechMaster lock. Often use for CIT situations to that the cash courier can call through to obtain a code.

ECBS: Stands for European Certification Body GMbH, which is a test and certification body who certify security products and safe locks to the EN 1300 standard.

Emergency override lock: Some electronic lock systems have back-up key operation. In the event that the electronics fail, the lock can be opened with an override key.

ESSA: Stands for European Security Systems Association, which is an association of manufacturers and distributors of security products.

Holiday locking periods: Similar to closing periods, on locks where a timelock schedule is in operation, holiday locking periods are dates which can be programmed to prevent access on what would normally be an open period, such as for public holidays.

I/O: Stands for Input/Output, similar to interface, and refers to a device fitted to a lock system, or terminals built into a lock, which allow for other devices such as alarm systems to be connected.

Immediate timelock: In lock systems where timelock is in operation on a weekly schedule, this feature allows the lock to be timelocked until a specified time in the future, and overrides the weekly schedule. Useful for holidays or temporary closures when the lock does not need to be accessed. The feature is also referred to as block the lock in some lock systems.

Interblock: The same as interlock. A feature of multiple lock systems, which prevent locks being opened if another lock in the system is already open.

Interlock: The same as Interblock. A feature of multiple lock systems, which prevent locks being opened if another lock in the system is already open.

Interface: Allows the lock system to interface with other security systems such as alarms. It can enable communication such as disabling the lock if the alarm perimeter is breached, or allowing a silent signal to be generated to the alarm system if a user is coerced into opening a safe, with the use of a special Duress code.

LAN: Stands for Local Area network, and refers to a network of devices connected together in one physical location. Some safe locks can be networked and connected to a LAN for administration.

Latchbolt lock: A safe lock which has an angled bolt, fitted with springs, similar to the latches used on doors. It is turned to open with a spindle in a similar way to a deadbolt lock, and the springs force it to close again immediately. When the safe’s door is closed, because of the angled and sprung bolt, it retracts on the strikeplate and then secures into the closed position.

LCD: Stands for Liquid Crystal Display, and is the method used for display on most safe locks with display.

Levers: Tumblers in a key operated safe lock which are individually coded, and individually moved by the bits of a key when the key is turned. When the levers are correctly aligned, the lock can open. The greater the number of levers, the higher the security because there are more possible codes.

Lock body: Describes the physical lock fitted to a safe, as distinct from other parts of a complete lock set such as the keypad or battery boxes.

Lock set: Describes a complete set of components ready to install, which would include at least the lock body and a keypad, key (s) or dial.

LPCB: Stands for Loss Prevention Certification Board, a UK test and certification body who certify security products.

Manager: A user in a lock system who has administrative control, such as managing other users (Adding, deleting, disabling) or amending other features on the the lock system, such as time delay.

Master: A user in a lock system who has administrative control. Depending on the lock, the Master can or cannot open the lock, and can amend other features on the lock system such as timelock values. In some lock systems the terms Master and Manager are interchangeable.

Motorbolt lock: A safe lock which has a rectangular bolt which is moved with a motor, and does not require a spindle to turn. Motorbolts are often connected to boltworks, and are often sprung so that the springs force the bolt to close when boltworks do not hold it in the open position.

Motor-driven lock: The same as a motorbolt lock. A safe lock which has a rectangular bolt which is moved with a motor, and does not require a spindle to turn. Motorbolts are often connected to boltworks, and are often sprung so that the springs force the bolt to close when boltworks do not hold it in the open position. The term can be confused with the blocking mechanism inside the lock, which, for EN 1300 locks, is also a motor.

Multiple locks: Allows for multiple locks to be controlled by one keypad. Useful if there are inner coffers or separate compartments. Generally, each lock will still have its own record of users and operating modes, and so each lock needs to be managed separately.

Open periods: If timelock is in operation, open periods are the times when timelock is not active, and the safe can be accessed by users with a valid code.

Open window: If time delay is in operation, the open window is the period of time after time delay has elapsed, during which a code can be entered

Opening extension: In lock systems where timelock is in operation, an opening extension allows for an extension to the normal end of the open period. For example, if a lock is scheduled to go into timelock at 17:00, but it is necessary for the safe to be accessible until 17:30, the opening extension will hold off timelock becoming active.

Opening periods: On lock systems where a timelock schedule is in operation, opening periods are dates that are entered into the system that allow the lock to be opened at times when timelock would normally be active. For example, the lock would normally have timelock active on Sundays, but an opening period is required for a special event.

OTC: Stands for One Time Code and is a feature on some safe locks allowing single use opening codes to be generated by software, valid for use on an associated lock. Often used for CIT situations so that the cash courier can call through to obtain a code.

Override key: Some electronic lock systems have back-up key operation. In the event that the electronics fail, the lock can be opened with an override key.

Override user: A designated user who is able to override time delay if it is in operation, and open the lock immediately. The term time delay override user and courier code mean the same thing.

Penalty: If incorrect codes have been entered repeatedly, the lock system will go into a time penalty (Generally 5 minutes) to prevent a brute force attack (Repeatedly testing codes).

PIN: Stands for Personal Identification Number, and refers to the individual codes used to open electronic safe locks.

Redundant: Describes a feature of certain electronic locks, which means that every internal component is duplicated so that there is a backup in the event that a component fails. This might mean 2 sets of electronic wiring, or 2 motors, the use of which is alternated.

Relocker: A device which provides a secondary lever of locking in the event that the primary level is compromised. In a safe lock, this might be a spring which if disturbed by drilling, blocks the bolt.

Remote disable functions: With an interface as part of the lock system, if a signal is received by the interface from a connected alarm system, the lock will prevent certain functions from being carried out.

Remote disable opening: With an interface as part of the lock system, if a signal is received by the interface from a connected alarm system, the lock will be prevented from opening.

Remote time delay override: With an interface as part of the lock system, if a signal is received by the interface from a connected alarm system, and time delay is in operation, users can override time delay and open the lock immediately.

Reset: The process of resetting a lock back to its factory settings. Reset generally requires a special device and access to the lock body (Meaning that the safe door must be open). Sometimes software is also required to carry out a reset.

Return lock: In some lock systems, a period of time after the last closing can be specified before the lock can be opened again.

Rotobolt: Another term for a swingbolt lock. A safe lock which has a quarter-circle shaped bolt which is pushed back into the lock’s body by bolt works.

Safe: A secure box designed to protect valuables from theft and sometimes fire.

Shelve function: The ability to reset a lock system to its factory settings with the entry of a special code.

Silent alarm: Also know as duress, if a user is coerced into opening a safe, they can enter a special variant of their normal code which generates a silent signal to a connected alarm system, notifying others that the safe is being opened under duress.

Single mode: One code can open a lock, generally used to distinguish from dual mode where two codes are required to open a lock. On occasion it may be used to refer to a lock setup where only one user (The manager) is enabled and all other users are blocked.

Slambolt lock: The same as a latchbolt lock. The term refers to the fact that the door can be slammed shut. A safe lock which has an angled bolt, fitted with springs, similar to the latches used on doors. It is turned to open with a spindle in a similar way to a deadbolt lock, and the springs force it to close again immediately. When the safe’s door is closed, because of the angled and sprung bolt, it retracts on the strikeplate and then secures into the closed position.

Solenoid: A coil of wire used as an electromagnet. When electrical current is applied after a correct code has been entered on a lock, the coil compresses and releases blocking elements, allowing the lock to be opened. The use of solenoids was disallowed on locks certified to EN 1300 standard in 2009, and motors were instead adopted as the standard method to release blocking elements. As such, no lock manufactured since 2009, and certified as EN 1300 can use a solenoid. Some latchbolt locks continue to use solenoids as they cannot be certified to EN 1300 standard.

Springbolt lock: Often used interchangeably with latchbolt and slambolt. It can also refer to some deadbolt locks which are fitted with springs, which force the bolt into the closed position when boltworks do not hold the bolt in the open position. This means that the keypad or knob does not need to be turned to close the bolt.

Sprung deadbolt lock: A deadbolt lock which is fitted with springs, which force the bolt into the closed position, when boltworks do not hold the bolt in the open position. This means that the keypad or knob does not need to be turned to close the bolt.

Spy shield: A cover that is either fitted over, or built into the design of keypads and combination lock dials to prevent others from viewing the code being entered or dialled.

Strongroom: A high security room designed to protect valuables from theft and sometimes fire.

Swingbolt lock: A safe lock which has a quarter-circle shaped bolt which is pushed back into the lock’s body by bolt works.

TCP/IP Interface: Refers to a type of interface with an ethernet port, which allows a lock system to be connected to a network enabling remote access for administrators.

Time delay: A feature which requires a period of time to elapse before the lock can be opened, to prevent a user from being forced to open the lock immediately. Once the time delay has elapsed, the user will be notified that the lock can be accessed with acoustic and visual signals. The period after the time delay has elapsed is known as the open window. The values for the time delay and open window can generally be managed with the manager code, up to 99 minutes can be set for the time delay, and up to 19 minutes can be set for the open window.

Time window: Similar to the open period if a timelock schedule is in operation, or the open window if time delay is in use. In both circumstances, it is the period when the lock can be opened with a valid code.

Time lock delay: Similar to the opening extension. In lock systems where timelock is in operation, a time lock delay allows for an extension to the normal end of the open period. For example, if a lock is scheduled to go into timelock at 17:00, but it is necessary for the safe to be accessible until 17:30, the opening extension will hold off timelock becoming active.

Timelock user tables: Allows a lock system to have a weekly timelock schedule that applies to certain groups of users.

Timelock: A feature which allows for a weekly schedule to be programmed into the lock, which prevents valid codes being used to open the lock at specific times, such as overnight when a business is closed. The term also applies to a separate timer device used in conjunction with standard safe locks.

UL: Stands for Underwriters Laboratory, which is an American test and certification body.

Users: Individuals who use a safe lock. Generally, the term Users refers to the code holders who can only open the lock and change their own code, but it may also refer to the overall number of lock users available in a system, including the Master and Manager users.

Vault: A high security room designed to protect valuables from theft and sometimes fire.

Vds: A German test and certification body, who certify security products and safe locks to the EN 1300 standard

WAN: Stands for Wide Area Network, and refers to a telecommunications network that extends over a large geographical area. Some safe locks can be networked, connected to a LAN, and be available over a WAN depending on the network configuration.

Wheel: Tumblers within a mechanical combination lock which are turned with a dial, and when correctly aligned, allow the lock to be opened. Mechanical combination locks generally have 3 or 4 wheels. The greater the number of wheels, the higher the security because the are more possible codes.