The particular sound a key makes when sliding into a lock can now be used to clone it, opening the possibility of hackers being able to unpick locks with just a smartphone and a piece of computer software.

Through the study of acoustics-based physical key inference, researchers led by computer scientist Soundarya Ramesh at the National University of Singapore found a way to turn “information from the physical environment that is seemingly of no utility” into a potentially game-changing way to unlock many of the world’s doors. 

The sound of a key pushed into a pin tumbler lock gives away the telltale order and dimensions of said lock.