Sherlock Holmes and security

Caught a glimpse of an old Sherlock Holmes show on the tele yesterday. The part I saw was very amusing. Homes had just recovered a priceless pearl. When handing it back to the museum he asked that it wouldn’t be put on display because the master thief had promised to steal it back again. The museum manager wouldn’t hear of it, of course, because they had an infallible security system. When the system was demonstrated Holmes commented:

Electricity—the high priest of false security.

(An absolutely brilliant comment!)

Then they went into the manager’s office to discuss the system. The wiring was concealed, and everything in the office was secured by it as well. Holmes birlliantly deduced the wiring was concealed behind the only curtain in the office. Creating a diversion he then disabled the security system. To demonstrate his cleverness he then asked Dr. Watson to take down one of the paintings in the room. He lifts it down and the alarm doesn’t go off of course. Now for the twist, the thief, in disguise, is already in the museum. He watched the demonstration of the alarm system before and realised he couldn’t steal the pearl without finding out more about the security system. Listening through the door he hears about Holmes’ cunning disabling of the system and while it’s still disabled he proceeds to steal the pearl.

Security is tricky business, you shouldn’t be too clever about it!

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