We love technology, but there are times when the smart-pants science types help the bad guys even more than the good guys. The latest example is called the Electronic Key Impressioner (EKI), and it makes the job of a locksmith (or Memphis Raines) a lot easier than it has ever been before. The scanner is a small hand-held device (pictured, above) with a scanning tip that electronically maps the inside of car locks. The device can then be attached to a computer via a USB device where lock mapping software accesses a list of updated key codes.

While the EKI system sounds pretty easy to use, there are still some drawbacks. First of all, the device presently only works with Fords, though the creators hope to expand the amount of vehicles with which the EKI can work in the near future. The system also only works with traditional keys – the ever more ubiquitous transponder keys render the EKI useless. But there are still millions of vehicles with traditional keys on U.S. roads, and if the EKI can get other automaker key codes integrated into its software, the tool could be very handy for locksmiths if/when it becomes available by the end of the year.

[Source: Popular Science]

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