Marc Tobias

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Marc Weber Tobias is an American security researcher, focusing on locks and locksmithing. With his associate Tobias Bluzmanis from Caracas (Venezuela) an expert in covert methods of entry wrote the book "Open in Thirty Seconds" published in 2008, and "Locks, Safes, and Security: An International Police Reference".

Professional background[edit]

Tobias is an American investigative attorney and author. His law practice specializes in technical fraud and related investigations that require the use of special interviewing and interrogation techniques and polygraph testing. Tobias has conducted or reviewed investigations involving locks, safes, security and locking products and technologies for both public and private clients. He also consults with corporations and government agencies with regard to the analysis of locks, alarms and security hardware for bypass capabilities and defective product designs that could lead to breaches in physical security.

Tobias has provided expert testimony in patent infringement lawsuits and defective product litigation with regard to product design and security defects, and in criminal trials.

He was trained as both a lawyer and criminal investigator and has been a certified polygraph examiner for the past twenty years. He has conducted thousands of polygraph examinations in both criminal and civil investigations involving cases of kidnapping and murder to employee theft from commercial businesses.

Security analysis[edit]

Tobias has analyzed and released numerous security alerts with regard to the security flaws in locks, ranging from high security, state-of-the-art systems that are installed in the White House and the Pentagon to the basic pin-tumbler cylinder locks that are commonly used around the world. He has been responsible for the disclosure of such security defects as the bypass of tubular locks with ball point pens,[1] the insecurity of gun locks that are relied upon to protect children, many popular consumer security devices, lock bumping in the United States, and most recently the security flaws in one of the most recognized high-security locks in the United States.

As a lock expert he has demonstrated the vulnerabilities of the security products of many lock companies, including Kwikset, Medeco, Targus, Master Lock and others.[2] Revealing the security flaws in locks with techniques as simple and effective as lock bumping, his work has forced many companies back to the drawing boards.[citation needed] As an expert lock cracker, Tobias has written guides and published videos teaching others his deciphering techniques – helping industries to improve standards, yet also providing accessible information to the public.[3] In 1994, Tobias hacked one of the early hotel room card key systems; the company no longer does business in the United States.[4]

His associated Tobias Bluzmanis has been a professional locksmith for the past 20 years. Born in Caracas (Venezuela) came to the United States in 1995 and was granted citizenship in 2000. He is an expert in Covert Methods of Entry and has developed many unique forms of bypass, custom tools, including a decoder for Medeco locks, which was the impetus for the book "Open in Thirty Seconds" published in 2008.


Tobias has been granted five U.S. and several foreign derivative patents regarding bypass tools and techniques for opening or protecting locks. These include: 7,441,431 PC GUARDIAN, 5,355,701 VINGCARD, 5,277,042 CLUB, 7,775,074 MEDECO.


Tobias has lectured on security in the United Kingdom, Germany, Israel, Sweden, Bulgaria, Malaysia, United Arab Emirates, Russia, Hong Kong, Austria, Netherlands, Canada and the United States.[citation needed]


He has published five police and security textbooks including:

  • Locks, Safes, and Security (First edition) 1970, 350 p, Charles Thomas Publishers
  • Locks, Safes, and Security (Second edition) 2001, 1408 p. Charles Thomas Publishers
  • Pretrial Criminal Procedure, 1973, 400 p., Charles Thomas Publishers
  • A Field Manual of Police Procedures, 1972, 300 p. Charles Thomas Publishers
  • Police Communications, 1975, 650 p. Charles Thomas Publishers;
  • LSS+ Multimedia Edition of Locks, Safes, and Security, 2002 (10 volumes).
  • OPEN IN THIRTY SECONDS: Cracking One of the Most Secure Locks in America, 2008.


Tobias is a member of several professional organizations including: American Society for Industrial Security (ASIS); American Association of Police Polygraphists (AAPP); American Polygraph Association (APA); American Bar Association (ABA); Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA); and Safe and Vault Technicians Association (SAVTA).

Tobias writes a feature column on security and travel for


  1. ^ Graeber, Charles (February 2005). "The Lock Busters". Wired Magazine.
  2. ^ Graeber, Charles (2009-05-22). "The Ultimate Lock Picker Hacks Pentagon, Beats Corporate Security for Fun and Profit". Wired Magazine.
  3. ^ Gamman, Lorraine; Thorpe, Adam; Malpass, Matt; Liparova, Eva (2012). "Hey Babe–Take a Walk on the Wild Side!". Design and Culture. 4 (2).
  4. ^ Graeber, Charles (2009-05-22). "Remember Pearl Harbor? This Lock Breaker Does". Wired Magazine.

External links[edit]