Smart locks: more than a household gadget

There is a new category of smart that is set to become mainstream; locks. Recent marketing has almost pigeon holed smart locks as a smart home gadget, when in fact potential applications are far more exciting. Supply, installation and repair specialist, CP Automation, uncovered one such application after supporting Smart Locking Logic with the development of the Smartlock Banking Solution.

A smart lock is unlocked when it receives authorisation from a device. In the case of the smart home, this device would most likely be a phone. This increases the security of your home, as real time alerts about unusual activity can be sent to the home owner. It also means you don’t have those “did I lock the door?” moments when you’re in a rush, as you can see from your device that the lock is engaged.

Sounds great right? Well the capabilities of smart locks are far greater than being part of the smart home phenomenon.

Imagine a remote, centralised operations centre controlling fleets of locks for an entire business. School exam papers, for example, could be locked securely when delivered to the school, and scheduled for unlocking just before the exam.

Similarly as cities get smarter, using interconnected technology and big data to gather new insights, smart locks will certainly have their role. Man hole covers, access chambers and gates can be locked securely and monitored remotely using the same concept, protecting valuable utilities and keeping the public safe.

It’s clear that smart locks have safety, security and integrity at the forefront of their development, however there is one application that takes these three benefits to the next level — banking.

Smarter cash delivery

Enter the Smartlock Banking Solution developed by Smart Locking Logic. With this system, the bank’s operations centre authorises ATM and branch electronic safe locks to open if a designated custodian is in the right place at the right time. Once authorised, the smart key stored in the custodian’s van can open the smart lock on the safe door.

This system breaks down into three major parts; the bank’s centralised operations centre, a smart key stored in the docking station and a smart lock installed on an ATM or branch cash safe.

The authorisation process

When a specific ATM or branch has been scheduled for cash delivery, the authorisation criteria are downloaded to the smart key docking station locked in the custodian’s vehicle. These criteria define a GPS geo-cell, and a specified window of time that the smart key will work in. If outside of this timeframe, the key will not work.

“Once in the correct location at the pre-planned time, the smart key is able to open a smart lock,” explained Johan Olivier, manager of product development at Smart Locking Logic. “This ensures only the assigned person can access the safe, increasing security and control across bank branches and ATM machines. This product is truly revolutionary for employees in the banking industry.”

Housing innovation

The docking station is at the centre of the entire system, holding the smart lock, sending GPS data to the operation centre and receiving important scheduling information. Because of this, the electrical enclosure around the docking station had to be rugged, long lasting and hard wearing, as well as protecting the docking station from dust and moisture.

Smart Locking Logic started to receive large orders for the Smartlock Banking Solution very early on in the product development. So, the company urgently needed to source electrical enclosures that were capable of encasing the docking stations to a high standard. Enter CP Automation.

After receiving CAD models of the design, CP Automation was able to quickly recommend 1000 IP66 safety rated Deltron enclosures, machined and finished in accordance with Smart Locking Logic’s specification.

“In such a high stakes application such as replenishing an ATM machine or delivering cash to a bank, security comes first,” explained John Mitchell, global business development manager at CP Automation. “If one small thing goes wrong in the process developed by Smart Locking Logic, the security of the whole system is compromised. In this case, something as simple as a spill or build up of dust in components will bring the system to a halt. The IP66 seal on the enclosures we supplied ensures that the docking stations are protected against powerful jets of water, so a small spill is no risk. The docking station has been built to handle whatever conditions it will face over the course of its lifespan.”

“CP Automation met our specification in a very timely fashion,” continued Olivier. “The smart key docking station is now working effectively around the world, equipping custodians with an intuitive smart tool and giving them the reassurance of an entire operations centre closing monitoring their safety every step of the way.”


With the docking station now safely enclosed, the benefits of smart locking seem endless. Aside from real-time alerts, this system also creates a permanent audit trail of all locking events and an overview of the status of the complete fleet of locks. This further increases security for both the driver and the bank, providing increased connectivity across the globe.

Suddenly the smart lock concept is far more than a household accessory. While the smart home is one portion of the market, the applications in banking for this technology are making a real difference to the safety, security and integrity of cash delivery.

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