Blog Post

KeyMe stores a copy of your keys in the cloud

Have you ever had to break into your own apartment because you couldn’t find your keys? I’m not sure why you didn’t contact a locksmith, but now you might not have to worry about doing either of those things ever again. KeyMe, the startup that brought key kiosks to 7-Elevens throughout Manhattan, now has an iOS app that allows you to store a digital copy of your key in the cloud.

Here’s how it works: You store a copy of your key by taking a photo of it on each side. The app walks you through how to do this. From there, any locksmith can create a new key for you via snapshots and duplication instructions displayed through the app.

You can also order duplicate keys by mail, which cost between $4.99 to $6.99 apiece and arrive within 2-3 days. KeyMe doesn’t store your address information, except temporarily while fulfilling mail orders, after which it is deleted permanently. It also uses advanced levels of encryption and password protection, along with email alerts for all account activity, so you’ll know if anyone tries to make a copy of your key other than you.

Another cool feature is the ability to share your key. If someone is visiting from out of town, for instance, you can send them a digital copy of your key beforehand which they can order through the app or bring to a shop to be made.

The app is free, but if you need to access duplication instructions it costs $9.99. That’s still a lot cheaper than making an emergency call to the locksmith.

KeyMe Error

I downloaded a copy of KeyMe and installed it on my iPhone 4S. Setup was fast, simple, and super secure, and so was scanning a copy of my key. Unfortunately, the key to the door of my apartment building is not supported. I got a message saying “This key type is not supported. We can do about 70% of the keys out there and are working hard to add new ones.”

So while KeyMe does indeed look like an awesome app, I’m afraid I won’t get to fully use it just yet. But that certainly won’t stop me from storing the rest of my keys in the cloud.

I want to bring a copy of my key duplication instructions to my local hardware store to see how they handle it. Then again, maybe I’ll just print out a plastic one at the UPS store.

18 Responses to “KeyMe stores a copy of your keys in the cloud”

  1. Doesn’t this make it easier for somebody to “steal” your key…and potentially rob your house at a later date? Imagine you have a AirBNB guest…they can use this app to possibly copy your key.

  2. For those commenting that this enables people to break in to your house: it doesn’t.

    This app lets you take a picture of a key, which a locksmith could turn into a key, but a locksmith could do that with or without an app. This same trick has existed well before cellphones too – people could (and did) just take a quick impression of a found key and have it turned into a useful door-opener in short order.

    And, lest we forget, the door lock just isn’t that great of a barrier to crime anyway. If someone wanted to break into your house, having the ability to go through the labor of obtaining your key, paying a locksmith to have it milled, then using it to enter illegally is unnecessary; I’m not that big of a guy and even I can break down an external door without substantial issue, and typically it’s not overly visible either (it’s just one small chunk that normally comes out).

    Not to mention how easy it is to pick a consumer lock regardless. A trained person could be through your average home door in under a minute without making it look too suspicious.

  3. Lydia Vazquez-Rivera

    And keys to your home online …Technology goes wild…Hey there are starving families. That don’t have a home!!!Raise money for that!!!

  4. Eric Anders

    yeah just think, now if you lose your keys at the store and have them returned to you, you might as well change all your locks because of this app

  5. erieinchicago

    couldn’t someone just take a picture of your keys and break into your home later? seems like physical keys have just been made obsolete…maybe this app made itself obsolete just by being created…hahaha.

  6. Dick Woodcock

    The key in the picture above that isn’t supported looks like the typical Kwikset key.

    So they don’t support a super common key like that one? That’s pretty useless.

    • Captain Obvious

      Hey Woodcock,
      The picture of the key above is a blank key and is obvious conceptual in-app art for “unsupported keys.” I thought this was obvious.
      Captain Obvious

    • Dewi Thompson

      Biff, The NSA said your fears about not trusting the cloud are unfounded, unrealistic and totally absurd and you are standing on the very ledge of paranoia.

  7. Randy Montpas

    This is such a wasteful app. I have actually make a key for an out-of-state client using a picture(like 4 years ago) using the zoom function. It was for a very specific situation (that was not a typical lock-out).
    90% + Hardware stores will not be able to cut your key anyways because they can not cut a key by code.
    A locksmith is going to charge you way more than 3$ (the price of a copy) to cut your key by code.
    The app is made for lock-out situations for which waiting 2-3 days for your key to be shipped out is useless.
    Why is this even a news story??

    -A Professional