> I suspect the main reason for the disappearance of the craftsman criminal is simply that there are fewer and fewer people with the practical skills and confidence to even try to break into a safe. Engineering apprenticeships have been decimated, and even the old metalwork shops in schools have gone, replaced by ‘craft, design and technology’, which seems to mainly involve making things of cardboard.
As he mentions later in the piece, the rewards just aren't that great. Moreover, I think surveillance technology has reached a point where getting access to the safe is harder than cracking the safe itself. And that if you have the means to bypass the surveillance, then you have the sophistication needed to bypass the safe's physical locks without traditional safe-cracking.
The other months of that job involved patrolling the HQ for a phone company, including the central computer rooms. One day we got a memo about a well-known hacker group that had dressed up in suits and just walked into the building because the daytime guards weren't checking IDs. Ha.
Picture two 19 year olds rolling a safe on a handtruck to a rental van parked in front of a the mall entrance at 11PM. The mall rent a cop came up to us and yells "What the hell do you think you are doing?"
My coworker snaps "WTF do you think? We've moving the safe -- get that door for us!". He did, and we rolled the safe into the van, then headed for our cars.
In his own words he got caught because he was "too successful, I was taking so many drugs I got stupid, the cops pulled me over with safes and paraphernalia in the trunk"
That's terrible pay, when you think about it. You're always on the road, and you spend a couple days on each bank. You might as well sell insurance for a living.
I think robbers know that, too. Bank robbing is old school. Robbing Gas pumps also has gotten too risky to be worth the trouble; they keep way less money around than they used to and they have video recorders everywhere. So, nowadays, your best bet is mom and pop shops, at least that is what I read in the papers :-)
I'd love to know whether all that stuff is still there.
It is to "metal work" what "information technology" is to programming.
If anyone broke into my home I assume it would be a brick through the window then in and out in five minutes grabbing any laptops, jewelery and cash rather than a planned attack with thermal lances and diamond core drills!
On the other hand, my guns aren't rare or particularly high quality. A reasonably good safe will cost more than the contents.
Edit: Nevermind, don't want to launch this debate. But it is so obvious a solution to me...
But the overall debate is probably not going to get decided on hn in any useful way.
No kidding, bank accounts with proliferation of various ways money is transferred and stored - budding criminals and kids who want to play mischief - look to the internet now. Cracking safes is so quaint.
I don’t mind reading about safe-cracking, but it’s a little disappointing that the article never talks about when safe-cracking is illegal, or how specifically it relates to engineering. The title doesn’t fit.
I was impressed to see early roman (Pompeian and Herculaneum) era locks. If anyone is interested this query served me https://www.google.com/search?q=ancient+%22roman+OR+pompeian...