Burglars don’t wear ski masks and hide in your bushes anymore. They  no longer have to break into a home or car by kicking in a window or door. Technology has made it much easier. In fact, all they need is a smart phone.

According to an article in The New York Times, apps like KeyMe and several others allow a person to copy a key by taking a picture of it, uploading it to the app, and giving an address for the key to be sent. This means tech savvy robbers will be able to get what they need simply by taking a picture.

It’s a scary prospect; just setting your keys down while reaching for your purse and wallet could lead to a break in if someone knows where you live. Think you’re safe if your key says “do not copy”? Think again, because- KeyMe is able to copy nearly every key, including standard house keys, special security keys, vehicle keys, access cardsa and fobs.

This technology is so new that many people have never heard about it and would be oblivious to the prospect that someone could copy their keys without actually having one.

“It makes you think twice about giving your keys to someone,” says Pete Galassi, special investigations unit senior manager for Mercury Insurance. “If you give your keys to a valet, he or she now has everything needed to break into your house. Your registration provides your address and an app can now make a copy of your key.”

Technology can be a double-edged sword. It allows us to do so many great things, but it also can leave us more vulnerable than ever. It almost makes you want to go back to the days of a man hiding in your bushes…well, maybe not, but it does make you think. A man in the bush will always be a scary thought, but someone having the keys to your house is just as frightening.

And that’s the point. Apps like KeyMe can be a great help, but people with bad intentions can also find a way to use it for another purpose that might not be so beneficial. Stay aware of things like KeyMe to keep your possessions as well as your family safe.