Today we’re looking at the ClickSafe Keyed Ultra Laptop Lock from Kensington.
The ClickSafe system resembles a cable bike lock at first glance, but it can attach to most any laptop available today. It has pluses and minuses like any product, but it does it’s job very well overall, Read on…
Click here to see a video slideshow of the ClickSafe Keyed Ultra Laptop Lock
Main advantage: very solid lock, fits in most any laptop you’ll find, easy to use
Main concern: Laptop can still be damaged even if locked, very unique key stands out a bit too much for a security device
Unique features: lock head is able to articulate to fit most any angle
If you’ve touched, seen, or been lucky enough to own a laptop in the last 20 years or so then you’ve probably had a computer capable of using this or many Kensington locks. Since 1990 the Kensington Security Slot has been designed into 99% of laptops released as the standard for laptop security. It’s also found in other electronic equipment such as Desktop PCs, Monitors, Projectors, servers, printers, etc. If you want to get really specific, here is a link to Kensington’s site specifically for designers on how the security slot works.
The ClickSafe Keyed Ultra Laptop Lock adds an ultra thick 6′ cable to the already proven security slot system. You’ll wrap the cable around a desk leg at a coffee shop, thread the cable through an included loop and then click the lock into the ClickSafe security anchor. The security anchor is a small injection molded metal “T” that fits into the Kensington security slot and tightens with an included allen key. You leave it installed in your device and it is barely noticeable as a small stainless steel button that sticks out about a quarter of an inch. As the ClickSafe name hints at, you just press the lock onto the already installed anchor and a satisfying click sound means that you’re laptop isn’t going anywhere without your approval. You can now feel free to go to the restroom at Starbucks without having to interrupt your work by packing up your computer or risk losing your table. Of course a determined thief could pick up the entire small work table and run out the door with it, so don’t think you’re invincible with this solution.
It always makes me wonder when I notice how casually people treat their laptops in a public place like Starbucks. People will go out to their cars, go to the bathroom, go to the restaurant next door, all while their laptop sits unattended asking for a new home. Starbucks doesn’t guarantee any safety and it’s normally a hectic place where a person gently picking up a laptop and walking out doesn’t seem that out of place. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that Starbucks is a leader in laptop theft and they’re just very good at keeping a lid on it. It probably helps that the people who get robbed are probably too embarrassed by how carelessly they treated their valuable goods after the fact. They might not be too excited to publicize that fact readily. The Kensington lock definitely lends some piece of mind to the situation, but I personally worry about two things.
First, I worry that even though my laptop might not be taken, it is exposed without me at the table. Even though it’s locked, while I’m in the bathroom someone could walk by and spill a coffee on it and leave, now what? Second, I worry about a potentially dangerous theft scenario. I live in Los Angeles and unfortunately it isn’t uncommon for robberies to occur from time to time around town. Say a person wanted to come in and hold everyone up and then collect all of the laptops in a bag. When the person came to my table I’d have to find the key, unlock my laptop and then hand it over. Unfortunately, criminals tend to be jumpy. Maybe in the time it takes for me to unlock the laptop and hand it over, the thief who holds a gun might get inpatient and decide I’m stalling on purpose. Anything to increase your one on one time with a bad guy is a risk. I don’t hold it against Kensington, but these scenarios ran through my mind while evaluating the lock.
In the end it’s an extremely simple to use and a very strong lock that will not only make amateur theft near impossible, it will also deter potential thieves just by the look of it. The head of the lock moves and rotates in just about any direction. It really seems to be the ultimate design for this type of lock. The question ends up being if it fits your personal need. I’m probably just a bit overprotective of my custom laptop. This lock effectively ends the possibility for the snatch and grab style robbery that is a common way that most say goodbye to a laptop. For a relatively small investment next to the thousands spent on your laptop, this is a great buy if you do a lot of work in public.
While I’m featuring a keyed laptop lock, Kensington also makes combination lock models as well as solutions for tablets and other devices. More info here.
Thank you again to Kensington for supplying their product for review.
Alternatives: Targus Ultra Max Laptop Cable Lock
What’s in the box: lock, two keys, allen key and keychain holder, security anchor
Manufacturer – $59.99
Amazon – $54.78
Is it worth buying: If you want a laptop lock to utilize the Kensington security slot you can’t beat one made by the company that started the idea in the first place.
If you haven’t already, click here to see a video slideshow of the lock
ENJOY YOUR GADGETS!