Attention: 9 different hidden handcuff keys you NEED to know about when working in law enforcement

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Hidden handcuff keys are often bought by thugs too.

They are designed to avoid detection so the owner can unlock their handcuffs and escape.

This matters for police officers and other security personnel.

For your security, you should know what to look out for.

Here are some real-life examples:

What is a concealed handcuff key?

These are cuff keys meant to be easy to hide and avoid detection.

The reason you would have a hidden handcuff key is to be able to unlock the handcuffs if you’re cuffed by someone unwillingly.

It gives you a chance to escape.

So the product itself is a great idea. If used by victims of crimes.

The downside is that thugs buy it too.

Check out this press release from Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office from 2018.

Upon search, they found a hidden handcuff key attached to his belt.

Most of them are universal handcuff key


Handcuff key hidden in zipper:

Check out this handcuff key. It’s hidden in a zipper. When it’s pulled over, the key is impossible to see. How are you supposed even to find it?


Hidden handcuff key bracelet

Bracelets are also a great place to hide a handcuff key. Keep that in mind when you’ve arrested and cuffed someone.

hidden handcuff key bracelet
Handcuff key hidden in a bracelet

Covert Handcuff key attached to clothing

The cuff keys are so small that they are easy to hide in clothes.

Check this example:


Shoelace handcuff key

These are handcuff keys hidden in a bootlace. Extremely hard to detect:


Concealed handcuff key from Zak Tool

Zak Tool has made this concealed handcuff key case.

Almost impossible to find:

Concealed handcuff key
Concealed handcuff key
Concealed handcuff key open 2
Concealed handcuff key open

They’ve also made this key. It’s hidden in a clip for ID cards:

This is my experience with the swivel handcuff key from Zak Tool (Spoiler alert: I think it is great!)


Handcuff key hidden in a belt keeper:

This one is also from Zak Tools. A handcuff key concealed in a belt keeper.

belt keeper hidden handcuff key
Belt keeper hidden handcuff key

Hidden handcuff key buckle

You can easily hide handcuff keys in a belt buckle.

Unfortunately, it’s not as easy to find it:

Hidden Handcuff key Buckle
Hidden Handcuff key Buckle

Non-metallic covert handcuff key

Handcuff keys made of plastic or other non-metallic materials are also on the market.

This one for example. Where you can avoid the handcuff key being exposed in a metal detector:

Non metalic covert handcuff key
Non-metallic covert handcuff key, made by Zak Tools

So why do I write about concealable handcuff keys?

For safety reasons.

Police officers should be aware of their existence.

Hidden keys represent a threat to your security as criminals might open their handcuffs without your knowing.

How to find a concealed handcuff key? And how to avoid the use of hidden keys?

To be honest:

If someone wants to hide a handcuff key, it will be hard to find.

Now you’ve seen a few different kinds of covert handcuff keys on the market.

Read my article about handcuff keys and what types I prefer.

So, at least you have an idea of what to look for.

The best way to avoid someone using a hidden handcuff key is to:

  • Use high-security handcuffs. It comes with unique keys.
  • Always keep an eye on the arrested person.
  • Always be mentally prepared for the person to unlock the handcuffs.
  • Proper attachment of the handcuffs complicates the possibility of taking off the handcuffs. See the images at the bottom of the article for the correct attachment.

Smith and Wesson have its S&W Maximum Security M104. It comes with a handcuff key that is somewhat different from universal handcuff keys.

The chance someone is hiding a handcuff key that fits the M104 is near zero.

If the arrested person is trying to unlock the handcuffs, it should be easy to detect.

properly attached handcuffs
Properly attached handcuffs. This is the correct way to attach handucffs. With the palms apart.

Interested in learning more about handcuffs? Be sure to check out our article about the different types of handcuffs.

3 thoughts on “Attention: 9 different hidden handcuff keys you NEED to know about when working in law enforcement”

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