Occasionally, I am wrong.
This is my friend who lives in an upscale, assisted living facility. I first mentioned her in Security Failure: Empty Your Drawers.
My friend parks her car in an underground garage that she shares with the other residents. I figured that the maintenance guy changed the garage opener code or frequency and forgot to tell her.
This time I was right, and the remedy led me to the security failure.
I found the maintenance guy and asked about the opener. He said he changed the transmitter frequency the previous week, and he would be happy to reset it.
“Follow me,” he said, picking up a stepladder.
So I followed him to the outside of the big garage door.
He positioned the stepladder under the garage opener receiver box, which had an antennae on it (see graphic above).
He asked me to hand him my friend’s opener, which I did. He opened it, climbed the ladder, and opened the receiver box.
He pushed a button in the receiver box, then a button on the opener, which programmed the opener with the new frequency (remember, we are standing outside the garage).
He tested the opener, which worked.
The maintenance guy then closed the receiver box, climbed down the ladder, and handed me the opener.
“Aren’t those receivers normally inside the garage,” I questioned, slipping into auditor mode.
The guy had no clue where this was going. “Yes, but the signal won’t go thru these concrete block walls. I tried that and had to move it.”
Then I said, “Next time, I’ll just come and program it myself.”
“You could certainly do that, Mack,” he said, hopefully. “Yes, you could.”
“Don’t you think you should enclose that box in a locked compartment, with the antennae sticking out?” I asked.
“Anyone,” I continued, “could easily program their own opener and enter the garage as well as the building.”
We both knew that all the outside doors in the facility was locked 24/7, but like most garages, the inside doors were not locked. That put the residents and their property at risk.
“Yes, I should,” he agreed, as he walked away, not only from me, but this problem.
He never looked back at either.