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In this video I will try to pick an RFID lock electrically. Will I succeed or fail? We will find out. Along the way we will learn tons about 125kHz RFID locking systems and how “secure” they are. Reading and writing to RFID tags will of course also be a part of that. So let’s get started!

Thanks to Morning Brew for sponsoring this video.

0:00 RFID Door Locking System Overview
1:17 Intro
2:12 How I built the Locking System
4:03 RFID Theory
5:54 Amazon RFID Writer/Reader
6:46 Amp Mod (Increase Reading Distance)
8:40 Coil Mod (Increase Reading Distance)
10:41 Verdict


38 thoughts on “RFID Locks are way too easy to "Hack"! Let me show you!”
  1. I am 49 yrs old, i don't use credit/debit cards i go to bank directly and withdraw the money I need, I don't use smartphone my old nokia 3310 is better and i use padlocks and the best alarm system ever ( dogs ), the day i have to rely on a car that drive by itself i will better walk. Don't judge me because of my way to see life but technology go smart and hackers go smart too. I love technology but i am not blind about it.

  2. Isn't that still stealing the key and making a copy? Could you write some code to cycle through the codes instead? Of course, would need to be unencrypted and probably have a bit of time on your hands 🙂

  3. so a blade could open the door if you get eyes on the lock wires, or you could just smash the rf reader off the wall and short the red and orange.

  4. This has to be my favourite one of your videos. I have played around a lot with RFID. I would like to try building a brute forcer that would just blast out RFID transponder codes until it got the right one. A good system should reject multiple attempts in a short space of time. An excellent system would detect it is being brute forced and increase the time between accepting new codes after a failed one. I bet you could build that in your sleep. In theory with a good waveguide and a small amount of amplification you could do this from a distance too. Like in a car parked outside a house. Why do this? Because it's fun.

  5. What happens when there are multiple RFID tags present, and you try to read. For instance, most credit cards today are RFID enabled, so trying to read an access card from someone's wallet must be pretty hard?

  6. Okay, I admit I haven't been over here for a little while and I feel bad about that. And yes, like all your other videos this one was super cool and informative. However, please put the old theme song back! I love that song with you building the LEDs.

  7. also i will give you your answer, u need to use the rfid tag as a magnetic field interupter so you need a transmiter coil, a receiver coil and a comparitor…

  8. Installed one of those exact amazon garbage door locking systems. The power supply (same as the one in the video) shorted mains to the metal casing and as a result the metal door as well. The door was somehow insulated from ground and the zap i felt wasn't pleasant. Beware that cheap chinese crap can be dangerous.

  9. LF tags are ideal for implanting into pets as they are about the size of a grain of rice so don't cause irritation and the read range and security are not a problem. HF is still used, especially its NFC variant where security is more important and the slightly better read range is useful. In industry UHF is the most common standard now as it has a much better read range (even small hand held devices can read a few metres) and multiple tags can be read at once.

  10. There multiple different RFID Tag types. There are secure and insechre ones. Of course the unsecure ones are much cheaper because they don't need so much logic. The secure ones work such as when you learn them in at the first time the system uses a crypto key to store data on the chip. To get the original data back you need the original key used to store the data. The communication of course is also secured so it is not possible to spoof the key. That is simelar to the way how the secured communication in the internet is done.

  11. Try a modified LW receiver, able to receive 125kHz signals. I had this idea, got a receiver but never had enough time to experiment. Using a directional loop antenna, it should detect RFID signals in a much grater distance. Meters away?

  12. At work they have these RFID readers basically shaped like a metal detector you see at the airport. All you have to do is have your id badge somewhere on you, and walking thru it will read the tag. could be in your pocket, in your bag, or dangling from a lanyard under your coat, it will still read it as you walk through. I really wish they installed them at every entrance because it's really a pain to remove my id to hold it up to the close range readers, likely thousands of dollars cheaper and easier to maintain than the large format ones but still. So much more convenient. Should be no problem for the 70billion dollar company to swing but hey, the CEO needed a new house or boat or something…

  13. Make a short range rfid listener. Not a reader, just something that listens. Stick it into a nice looking box with a small circuit that stores read values and sends them to you via a simcard. Stick a battery in it and stick it with a sticky tape underneath the reader.

    Low chance that anyone will think anything of it.

  14. Security is more a game of deterrence than anything else, and so you weigh everything from the value to bad actors to the (in)convenience for the valid users and find a solution that is sufficient for the scenario.

    I think the biggest takeaway should be “just because it has a computer in it doesn’t mean it’s automatically more secure than other options”, and that is something we would all do well to remember.

  15. Fun fact: the "CE" mark you can see on the locking mechanism is not in fact the European Conformity mark, but the "China Export" mark. The difference? The spacing of the real CE mark are NOT jammed up against each other.

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