Liberty Safe Company is Sucking up to Tyrants

S&G Combination Lock
This S&G combination lock on a gun safe is more secure than an electronic lock

There has been a large amount of coverage on YouTube and in the gun press about how Liberty Safe Company gave the FBI the access code to open an individual’s safe. As a result, Liberty is being compared to Bud Light, called a traitor, and someone suggested their name should be “Liberty Not so Safe Company.” (That one is my favorite.)

Three Things to Know

Here are my thoughts:

First, Liberty should not have turned over the combination or code to a customer’s safe without a direct court order to do so. Shame on them for kowtowing to a tyrannical federal agency.

Second, there is no doubt the FBI would have gotten into the safe one way or another. Liberty is a low-end safe company, and if the FBI wanted to hire a safe cracker or just get out some power tools, they could have broken into it. Arguably, by giving the FBI the code, Liberty prevented the safe from getting destroyed. How the owner feels about that probably depends on what the FBI found when they opened it.

Third, this is what happens when you rely on electronic locks. Because none of us can look at the software running the lock, we do not know how many backdoors might hide inside. Further, for all we know, someone can hack an electronic lock with a Raspberry Pi and cause it to open. This is one reason I don’t have a Ring doorbell or allow my thermometer or door lock to connect to the Internet. I don’t want anyone accessing them remotely or through a physical electronic connection.

Now that the existence of this code is common knowledge, how long do you think it will take before that information gets stolen and put up for sale on the dark web? I bet hackers are attacking Liberty’s network right now, looking for the file of serial numbers and matching codes.

Get a Mechanical Combination Lock

The old-fashioned Sargent & Greenleaf mechanical combination locks may add a couple hundred dollars to the cost of your safe, but they are more secure than a digital lock. First, with a bit of knowledge, you can open your safe, examine the locking mechanism and determine there is no second “secret” combination that will allow someone to unlock it. You can also change the combination.

It took me an $8 tool available on eBay and less than ten minutes to change the combination when I moved into a house that already had a heavy-duty safe in it. Not only does the former owner not know my combination, neither does the safe manufacturer.

An electronic keypad may save you seconds when you need to access your guns, but I guarantee you I can get to the gun on my waist faster than you can draw a gun from a locked safe. With practice, you can get pretty quick using the S&G combination lock.

If you don’t have a gun safe or are thinking of upgrading, I recommend you read this post about gun safes from 2022.

Is Liberty a Bad Company?

Based on its actions, Liberty appears to be a company that doesn’t have the back of their customers. They are owned by private equity firm Monomy Capital Partners, so we can assume their management cares more about profits than it does about defending an individual’s rights. That shouldn’t surprise us. Unless a company promotes their stance as a defender of our Constitutional rights, it is best to assume they are not.

Their policy to cooperate with law enforcement was probably developed by lawyers who are not gun owners and never stopped to think about how their customer base would feel about such a policy. I bet they are rethinking their policy right now at the urging of the marketing department. (Oops, too late.)

But how hard is it to say “No?” Think how much positive publicity they would be getting today if they had said, “I wish I could help you, Mr. FBI man, but we only turn that information over to law enforcement when presented with a valid court order requiring us to do so. What’s that? No, I’m sorry, a warrant served on an individual in another state isn’t good enough.”

Important Lessons

Here’s what we can learn from this:

  • Don’t get a Liberty safe.
  • Other safe companies may have similar policies, so stay way from safes with electronic locks. Get one with a mechanical combination lock from S&G and change the combination yourself.
  • If you have incriminating documents or other evidence, don’t hide them in your safe or anywhere else in your house.
  • Get one of those pepper spray systems that triggers when someone opens your safe without first disabling it. It will give you something to smile about while you wait to be bailed out and ensure the FBI remembers you fondly.


After seeing the writing on the wall, Liberty quickly revised their policy to require a subpoena before code information over to law enforcement. They have also said they retain manufacturer access codes to help customers who get locked out, but they have developed a process for which safe owners can opt out. If they do so, Liberty will supposedly erase your safe’s code and then cannot turn it over to law enforcement.

In my opinion, this was a better and faster response than Bud Light has given its customer base, but it doesn’t erase the original problem, nor do we know how many times in the past they have turned safe combinations over to law enforcement.


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