Opinion: With over 26,000 bikes reported stolen in London alone, it’s not just about buying a lock, it’s about getting the right one and using it properly. Bike shops can make a difference, Kryptonite says

Kryptonite: How shops can help customers choose the right bike lock

Ralph Prins – Kryptonite Sales Manager:

“As more individuals have come to rely on the bicycle, whether for commuting to work or leisure, more bikes on the street means more bike theft. Over 26,000 bikes were reported stolen in London alone (BBC, 2012 report) and that is just the tip of the iceberg as we know many cyclists do not report stolen bikes. Many of these bike thefts could easily be prevented if cyclists were using the appropriate level of security for their bike lock-up situation and were using the lock properly.

Here’s some helpful information for dealers and their consumers alike, on what they should look for when choosing the most effective and appropriate bicycle lock to beat the bike thieves –

The two key factors that Kryptonite advises dealers and consumers to consider when choosing a bicycle lock with the right level of security for their situation is where they are locking up their bike and how long it will be left unattended. Kryptonite’s easy to follow 1-10 point security rating system recommends a “10” (i.e., New York Lock) for high risk areas such as a densely populated city like London. A cyclist may choose a “6” (i.e., KryptoLok Standard) for moderate security protection if they plan on quick stops in a metro area or live in a more rural area that would be considered a low risk area.

Typically, the first consideration for many cyclists when it comes to choosing a bicycle lock is how much to spend. Although the lock is a necessity, it is often the accessory that many riders overlook or do not spend enough time researching. As a guide, Kryptonite always recommends spending 10 percent of the bike’s value on security.

After a consumer has identified the level of security they need, the next step is choosing the specific style/type of bicycle lock they prefer whether u-lock, chain security, or a cable lock. Choosing a bicycle lock can indeed be frustrating with the numerous brand options and types of locks. The right choice can mean the bike is well protected; whereas opting for a lock that doesn’t offer enough security can result in the loss of thousands of pounds, the hassle of dealing with the police and your insurance company and of course the inconvenience of losing your prized asset. The key is to focus on usage – where will I be locking the bike, what will I be locking the bike to, do I prefer the flexibility of a chain or the compactness of a small u-lock, etc.

As a leader in bicycle security for more than 40 years, Kryptonite has worked closely with dealers and consumers to identify the changing security needs for cyclists. Kryptonite’s “street cred” has grown over the years and can be seen with its relationship with urban riders and bike messengers. Having an “ear to the ground” at all times, Kryptonite listens to consumers and in turn has developed innovative products over the

years such as the iconic “Mini U-Lock” (Evolution Mini-5) and more recently the first ever high security “Mini Integrated Chain” (Evolution 1055 Mini Integrated Chain). As we know, today’s cyclists often are in search of two things – high security and lightweight security. The latest “mini” is the Evolution LITE Mini-6. Kryptonite’s lightest mini option is 16 percent lighter than the Evolution Mini-5 at 747 grams but just as strong.

Indeed, the Evolution LITE Mini-6 is small but packs a punch. It was designed to meet the needs of commuters and bike messengers who require a strong, compact lightweight u-lock which can be easily stowed away in a pocket. The Evolution LITE Mini-6 features a new hybrid disc cylinder. It comes complete with three stainless steel keys and a modular LED replaceable key fob. Not only will this new lightweight mini soon be Sold Secure Silver certified, it also carries Kryptonite’s anti-theft protection offer of £900.

Another new product from Kryptonite that is great for individuals or families with several cycles in the household is the KryptoFlex 1230 Cable. This extra-long 305cm x 12mm flexible braided steel cable, available in both key and combo versions, is great for a quick stop on a family ride or for cyclists transporting multiple bikes on a roof or rear hitch rack. The KryptoFlex 1230 has many features which make it simple enough for all the family to use with the Key cable including a rotating lock head for easier handling and the Combo cable having a 4 digit resettable combination lock with indexed number dials for error-free combination setting.

In the end, it’s not just about the bicycle lock it’s about a consumer’s experience with a brand. Kryptonite’s core online services such as free key replacement, free key and combination registration and the Anti-Theft Protection Program allow a consumer to focus on riding while their overall experience is enhanced. Helpful educational resources such as the Ultimate Security Guide and the “How to Choose a Lock” signage found in a local bike shop also help by simplifying bicycle security for a consumer.

In the fight against bike theft we would urge cyclists to be sure to utilize all the valuable resources Kryptonite offers at kryptonitelock.com including “how to choose a lock” and “how to properly lock a bike” as well as to speak to their local Kryptonite retailer for advice on the best security solution for them. Retailers can offer guidance on the different Kryptonite products available and they are well-placed to help bike owners find a lock at the right security level to fit with their individual lock-up situations."

For more information on Kryptonite products or services check kryptonitelock.com

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