An ITV documentary tonight claimed heavy chain locks couldn't defeat determined bike thieves

Kryptonite questions methods used in lock-break TV show

As revealed first on (July 10th) ITV London’s ‘Gone in 60 seconds: The Bike Crime Wave’ followed police sting operations to catch bike thieves and had a Newcastle upon Tyne chain supplier break into meaty locks from Kryptonite, Abus and Squire. This chain supplier used a 42-inch bolt cutter to break into his competitor’s products. Video clips here.

‘Gone in 60 seconds’ highlighted the growing problem of bike theft in London. The footage of bike thieves being caught by police would have warmed the hearts of cyclists. The bike thieves were shown equipped with lightweight tools suitable for cutting lightweight locks. Sensible cyclists use huge, meaty chains. These foil all but the most determined, and tooled up, thieves.

However, ITV London showed how, with big cutting tools, pro thieves can cut almost any lock.

Locks from Abus, Squire and Kryptonite were shown being breached. Meaty locks were not used in the sting operations, perhaps proving that such locks foil 99 percent of bike thieves.

In the programme, Abus and Kryptonite provided comments used in a short right to reply section. US-based Kryptonite has penned a longer, more detailed critique on its corporate blog, Unbreakable Bonds.

What follows is the lengthy comment from blog author Donna Tocci:

Kryptonite sent a comment to Alex Nott, Producer of tonight’s ITV show "Gone in 60 Seconds – The Bike Crime Wave" last week. But, we wanted to talk to our customers because we are confident in our products (we use them every day) and want our customers to feel confident as well.

We weren’t offered the opportunity to participate in, attend or view an unedited version of this "test". What we did see was a clearly edited video performed by a competitor whose products, we are told, are not used in this show.

Kryptonite takes the security of its customers’ property very seriously and does not condone or support any form of media that publicly educates or encourages criminal or other illegal activity on any brand of lock. We also don’t condone or support product demonstrations that do not fully educate the viewer on the types of tools used and the conditions in which such tools would be used.

This televised demonstration leads viewers to believe that 42-inch bolt cutters are common tools used by thieves. They are not. The 42-inch bolt cutters used in the show are large in size, expensive to purchase and difficult to obtain (according to our research).

Please note that the price of this 42 inch bolt cutter, like the one used in the show, retails for approximately £291-360 ($600-742 U.S. Dollars), and replacement jaws retail for approximately £100.00 ($206 U.S. Dollar. [BikeBiz note: it’s possible to Google for cheap 42-inch bolt cutters but these aren’t the ones used in the ITV show].

Unfortunately, there will always be people who think it is necessary to publicize ways to perform criminal or other illegal activity. We recognize that and are committed to constantly evaluating technologies and methods for providing products that guard against these most common methods.

The methods described on this show are not common methods currently in use in the UK or elsewhere. The New York Fahgettaboudit chain is covered by Kryptonite’s anti-theft protection offer. In the last two years, in the UK, there have been no claims of property being stolen that was secured with a New York Fahgettaboudit chain. Zero.

Our high end security products, including the New York Fahgettaboudit chain, meet or exceed industry testing standards and are also tested by internal and external professionals in a variety of ways to guard against methods commonly and uncommonly used by thieves. Kryptonite has manufactured and sold high quality products for 35 years and has been testing the products for just as long. As a matter of fact, Kryptonite team members who test the products have an impressive combined testing knowledge of 46 years.

Our internal tests involve a variety of tools used by thieves, such as bolt cutters (including 42 inch bolt cutters), hack saws, hammers, pry bars, grinders, hydraulic devices and a host of other common and uncommon methods. The products are tested to the point of failure in order to understand the limitations and the environments for which the products are best suited. If a new method is heard of by Kryptonite, the products will be retested against that method as well.

Despite the internal testing done by Kryptonite employees, we do not ask that our current or future customers just take our word for it. We rely on independent, third party testing to expertly attack the chains and locks. We submit our high end locks to industry respected testing agencies such as Sold Secure (UK), ART (NL), VdS (DE), N.F. (FRA), Classe SRA (FRA) and SSF (Sweden). In total, Kryptonite has received over 70 approvals from these agencies for a variety of its products. The New York Fahgettaboudit chain received the highest ratings of Gold and 4+ from both Sold Secure and ART.

Another highly respected third party tester, Cycling Plus Magazine, tested the New York Fahgettaboudit chain in its annual lock test this spring and it fared very well over the other chains submitted, receiving a coveted "recommend." The chain held up over one minute to power tools after it was already attacked for 5 minutes with more common street tools, such as bolt cutters.

We understand and respect the fact that people are passionate about the brand of lock they choose. We are not interested in a back and forth with our competitors or their supporters; we’ve said our peace and will leave it at that. If you have a question or concern about one of your own Kryptonite locks, please do not hesitate to contact our customer service at

We offer a broad range of products so customers can select products to create security levels specific to their unique needs and environments. The products are and will be continuously tested, both internally and externally, to provide customers with products that will protect their property in a variety of environments and give them general peace of mind.

Having said all that, as we go forward on this blog, we’d like to ask that everyone refer to our very first post in the blogosphere.

It requests , "that people be respectful with their comments. Constructive criticism is welcome, slander is not. Profanity is not. Basically, please don’t say something here that you wouldn’t say in one of our living rooms. We would appreciate that." This is a common request in the blogosphere and we don’t find it unreasonable. We will ask again that everyone please keep that in mind.

Thanks for your time. Now we suggest you turn off the computer and go out for a nice ride. You can feel confident that Kryptonite will continue to meet the challenges of the street.

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