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What is the right fastener – Levels Of Security

Levels of Security

Imagine for a moment that someone could walk into Bunnings and buy a set of keys for your car!
That would cause some concern no doubt…..

Ok, not everything held together with security fasteners is as valuable as your car, but some applications are critical and could be worth many times more if a dollar figure could be applied. It is important to understand that Security fasteners are divided into 3 different levels of security, this will help to ensure you get the appropriate solution when choosing fasteners for any particular application.

Security Fasteners – what determines the level of security?

This quite simply is the availability of the tooling.
We spoke in the opening paragraph about going to Bunnings and picking up some keys for a car. The truth is that anyone in society can buy a driver tool set containing a variety of tooling for low security recess shapes. These are the fasteners we now think of as level 1 security fasteners. They certainly do offer some level of protection and still act as a vandal deterrent, but any serious crook could get access to the tools if they wanted.

Level 2 security fasteners are different. Tooling for level 2 security fasteners is not available in generic driver tool sets. In some cases it is a requirement to register your details when buying a tool for these fasteners. This ensures the distribution of tooling is controlled.

Fasteners that fit into level 3 security fasteners offer an even higher level of protection. You cannot buy tooling to remove the fasteners, either they are one way (meaning that there is no tool to remove them), or, in the case of the UNISET fastener, uniquely shaped driver tools can only be purchased by those that the shape is registered to.

The below brief video explains this in further detail

How to identify the level of security?

To make it easier for you, we have added security level indicators to all our promotional material. This will help to choose the right fastener for the job.

Here’s a few snapshots of what to look out for:

Prolok Catalogue:

Prolok Catalogue

The Website

The Website


Prolok Security Fastener Handbook

Prolok Security Fastener Handbook

Case studies

So, where have these levels of security come into play? Many customers have proved the benefits of using the right level of security for the right job.


Corrections Department – New Zealand

One example is a new prison site in New Zealand. The corrections department had previously been using a Torx Plus screw in most applications inside their facilities, thinking that they were a high level security fastener. When a new prison build came up, the subject of security fasteners was discussed and some options presented. After learning that torx plus driver tools were commonly available in auto stores, they immediately were on the lookout for other solutions. The Pentaforce recess was put forward and is now in use as a more suitable option being a level 2 security fastener with control over the distribution of the tooling.

Local council – NSW Australia

In the past, Local councils have had problems with dealing with copper theft from light poles in the public space. In one case in NSW an effective solution to this was to install Level 3 Uniset fasteners on all access cover plates. This prevented unauthorized access and kept the cabling where it was intended to be!

Securing 4WD accessories

In 2014, Sentinel began discussions with one of Australia’s leading suppliers of 4 Wheel Drive parts and accessories. At the time, a particular range of quality driving lights were being sold with a kit of level 1 security fasteners to keep the light secure. This measure unfortunately wasn’t enough to secure these high value products and the company started receiving bad feedback on social media because their lights had become an attractive item for theft and vandalism because of their value.

Concerned that this would damage sales, it was necessary to look for a more suitable security solution. Sentinel were able to step in, designing a special purpose-built security kit utilising level 3 security fasteners. The solution involved a custom Four-hole design, a proprietary Pentaforce recess shape and a Lockrite TM lock washer. This washer design prevents loosening from vibration and makes it near impossible to loosen the nuts by twisting the whole light body. The unique screw design features a special thread patch and an oversize head with serrations to prevent loosening from vibration.

Sentinel oversees packaging and labeling the products in kit form and they are included in the hardware that is supplied standard with these premium driving lights – a complete solution!



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