Manufacturer of the world's most secure fasteners

The Security Screw Problem

So What Is A Security Screw?

Security screws, also known as tamperproof screws, are otherwise standard screws but with a unique head, making it nearly impossible to remove with common tools. That used to mean that any screw that couldn't be removed with a slot-style or Phillips® head driver could be considered a security screw. However, this is no longer true. The vast majority of so-called security screws or tamper proof screws on the market today, provide neither security nor are they tamperproof. Calling them such is making a false claim and is simply misleading the public and the buyer. 

Problems With Security Screw Types

The security screw problem today, is not with the security screws themselves, but rather with the common availability of the driver bits used to remove those screws. Today there are millions of these once 'tamperproof" screwdriver bits in circulation at retailers and wholesalers everywhere. Toolboxes around the world are now equipped with these driver bits which makes these screws ineffective for any true security application. Almost every security screw made is vulnerable and can no longer be considered a vandal-proof or even tamper resistant fastener.

You can see the full selection of Bryce Security Screws here.

As mentioned earlier, this was not always the case. Once upon a time, the driver bits were produced by a single American manufacturer, making them scarce and very hard to get. Traditional security screws got the name "tamper-proof" because they actually were tamperproof. As tamper-proof screws became more popular, more bit manufacturers added security bits to their line. Once the patents expired, these security bits could be manufactured by anyone and sold in retail stores around the world.

Security screws soon lost their legal ability to use the word "tamper-proof" or "vandal-proof" because the screws were only tamper-resistant due to the market being flooded with bits. Of course, many still do it. The proliferation of the tamper-proof bits has degraded traditional security screws. Bit manufacturing moved offshore beginning 15 years ago and there are almost no American manufacturers now. Tamper-proof bit manufacturing exploded and now almost every security bit and screw is made in China and can be purchased at any hardware store or online merchant. The bits are often in sold in large sets with a variety of types, sizes and styles for just a few dollars. The vast majority of tamper-proof screws and vandal-proof screws have been rendered useless as such. The few that are not completely useless have degenerated to being "tamper-resistant" and "vandal-resistant" at best. 

What Are The Best Security Screws?

Today anyone, including a thief, can buy a large set of security bits at the corner store for just a few dollars. These days, most toolboxes are equiped with a set. This is the serious security screw problem we are faced with today. Most so-called security screws are not secure at all. Bryce Fastener has been working on security solutions for the last 11 years and is not afraid to sound the alarm: If you use traditional security screws you have a security problem! We have the solution. Bryce Fastener designs and manufactures the highest-level security screws on the market. Bryce tightly controls the bits to their unique tamperproof variety of fasteners. So, there is no concern that someone is going to buy one of their bits at a hardware store or online somewhere.

So what is the best security screw you can buy? The Bryce Fastener Key Rex currently reigns supreme. This fastener is trusted by the US Military, nuclear facilities around the world, banks, prisons, universities, tech companies, medical device manufacturers, credit card companies, solar installations and more. But how can you be sure somebody else won't just use their own Key Rex driver bit to remove your screws? The head of the Key-Rex screw is custom "keyed" with a unique keyway and fastener bit for each customer. No two are alike, and there are a jaw-dropping 53 billion key code variations. So you can be sure that no one will have a duplicate driver bit for your fasteners. Each set of these custom screws and their high-tensile, perfect fitting driver bits have a unique serial number specific to the client and job. But don't lose your bits. If you need replacements and you aren't the person who originally ordered them, there are quite a few high-security hoops you'll need to jump through to get them. Most people order extras and keep them locked away in a safe somewhere.

An additional security feature of these one of a kind screws, is that the head is manufactured with a unique underside called the "Raptor Claw". This feature allows the screw to dig into the surface and stay there. The Raptor Claw, the super-tight fitting driver bit and the ultra-high shear strength of everything means these screws can be torqued down like none other. So even if someone did manage to create a bit to fit the screw, when torqued to recommendations, the bit will break long before the screw will move. But that's not all. The head shape of the Key-Rex is such that it easily prevents grabbing with tools such as locking pliers. Drilling out the super-tough metal or cutting a groove into it for a slotted screwdriver or some other tool to unscrew is nearly impossible. The large center pin rejects these tools and others. If perhaps, even the most devoted criminal was able to remove one of these screws, it's going to take quite a while to do so. Then there's usually many others that need removed as well. So they eventually give up. How do they know this? In the many years that Bryce has been manufacturing the Key Rex, and millions of screws in applications all over the world, only a handful have reported a breach in a screw. Investigations were done and most of those were not torqued to specification. The others were simply highly committed individuals with a lot of time on their hands. But even those didn't result in more than a single screw being breached.

Here is a great security screw video showing the Bryce Key Rex under attack with multiple tools in a shop setting. You can also view the full video by clicking here.

Alarming Stories

Because Bryce Fastener has been a security screw specialist for 25 years, we've been exposed to alarming stories where security screws have been compromised.

Below are a few examples;

  • Prisoners were hiding drugs and knives behind wall plates. They had the security bits and the guards did not. Bryce Fastener sold security bits to the prison and now the guards have the bits and the prisoners do not.
  • $20,000.00 worth of digital light projectors we're stolen over a long weekend from a university. The projectors were secured with traditional security screws. Bryce supplied Key-Rex® screws and no thefts have occurred in the last 7 years.
  • Stereos secured with traditional security screws were taken from a retail store. The store sold the same security bits they used to secure their stereos with. All the theives had to do was steal the bits, unfasten the stereos and make their heist. Our high security screws were experimented with and finally used throughout the whole chain.
  • $40,000.00 worth of computers were stolen from a hospital and important patient data was lost. Key-Rex® was implemented to halt future loss.
  • White Sands nuclear facility was losing secretsOur security screws now secure it.
  • A cable TV company in South America began with a 2,000 piece screw order from us 8 years ago to secure problem boces placed on public sidewalks. They have ordered over 2,000,000 screws since for additional usages.
  • Government license plates came up missing in Michigan after 9/11. Due to budget constraints, the government did not implement Key-Rex® and the thefts continue.
  • A lottery company found out thier slot machines had been compromised after a number of extra large payouts. Our security screws have prevented no further compromises. 
  • ATM machines secured with standard security screws were taken. Our screws now secure them with no reported breaches since.
  • One of the biggest internet companies ordered our products before they went public. They continue to order Bryce Fastener's.

The alarm is as big as the risk. When someone can walk into a small town hardware store and buy security bits, tamper-proof screw users should be alarmed.

Problem Security Screws

There are all types of security screws that are NOT secure. The following is a list of the most common problem security screws. A tamper-proof screwdriver kit purchased in a popular retail hardware store in America included these security bits: Torx®-Pin, Six-Lobe-Pin, Hex-Pin, Allen®-Pin, Drilled Spanner and Triwing®. Other kits contained a Phillips®-Pin. One contractor supply kit had a Square-Drive bit with a hole. One-Way removal tools are also available. If you are using any of these styles of tamper-resistant screws, be aware that they have limited security. If your application requires higher security, Bryce Fastener's security screws are your best line of defense.

See the full selection of Bryce Security Screws here.

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