Aquinas Room Security Still An Issue

Aquinas Room Security Still An Issue

Aquinas part 2: Electric Boogaloo

Allegations of break-ins at Aquinas have proven to be true, despite the college stating that “locks are up to date.” Critic Te Ārohi has received evidence of residents accessing specific locked rooms with the use of only a student ID. A series of differing lock mechanisms has meant that specific residents' rooms have become more susceptible to break-ins than others, creating space for individuals, such as the notorious Aquinas bra thief we reported on last week in issue 6, to wreak havoc.  

Director of Campus and Collegiate Life Services James Lindsay told Critic that, “Aquinas locks are up to date. All barrels of the bedroom locks throughout the college were changed during the summer.” He also said that the college has “not received any complaints” and that “no allegations were made to us” with regard to the alleged security-related incidents. Nonetheless, he said, “After being made aware of this week’s Critic article, we have asked our security contractors to inspect the locks and advise.” Lindsay’s statements were confirmed by multiple Aquinas residents who informed Critic that changes were being made to ensure adequate security of rooms. 

However, residents have reported that the ability to conduct room break-ins on specific doors, in a practice coined as “carding” (how good that it has a name), is still possible with some rooms. One resident, Toby*, told Critic Te Ārohi that it is “quite a technical thing, and if you are going to do it, be prepared to sacrifice a card or two to the door gods.” Not that he’s endorsing the practice.

“Carding” is reportedly unique to a series of locks on the second and third floors of the hall, with the first floor having exclusively handles rather than doorknobs, which was part of the recent changes during renovations. The practice also requires there to be sufficient gap between the door and the frame, allowing for the insertion of a card. Toby alleged that the hall had “tightened up screws at the end of last year so there wouldn’t be a gap, but they must not have done them all.” 

Toby reported that at least five of his friends had doors which could be accessed through the “carding” technique – apparently “quite useful when you’ve locked yourself out.” Critic Te Ārohi was invited by Toby to investigate further by “carding” a locked room – and we managed to break-in (with permission). The process was “really that easy,” according to reporter Sam. Toby* reasoned that any Aquinas student could easily recognise which door had the ability to be “carded”. A bit of a concern, really.

Another Aquinas resident, Nia*, told Critic, “Because there’s only like 100 of us, it was pretty obvious when it started happening.” Nonetheless, she suggested that “Aquinas has the best spirit I think, compared to other halls, everyone is mates pretty much.” Her mate, Holly* jumped in to contradict this, stating that, “the first and second halls can be a bit cliquey sometimes.” See the love girl, see the love.

Critic has been told that security contractors are reviewing the locks to rectify the issue.

This article first appeared in Issue 7, 2024.
Posted 1:28pm Sunday 14th April 2024 by Hugh Askerud and Sam Smith-Soppet.