Despite whatever Hollywood has led you to believe, breaking into banks is incredibly difficult. Some vaults are so secure that it is impossible for a heist to take place. Read on to learn about some of the world’s most impenetrable banks, as well as those belonging to some private companies, to see what extreme measures are taken to ensure that the deposits and valuables of clients are kept completely safe.
The United States Bullion Depository boasts a solid granite wall perimeter and squadrons of machine gun wielding guards and armed military. If by some chance a thief got past those safeguards, they will then have to contend with the 22-ton vault door guarding the loot. To go even further, the door is equipped with a lock so intricate that it takes a 10-person team to unlock it. This may be why no robbery attempt on Fort Knox has ever been reported.
The Bank of England Gold Vault
This vault houses over 4,600 tons of gold, and it is second in size only to the Federal Reserve in New York. The walls are bombproof, so sturdy that employees actually used them for protection during air raids in World War II. When the doors actually do need to be opened, it is quite a process. An elaborate security system has been put in place that requires a combination of three-foot keys, voice recognition, and other security measures too detailed to publish.
The Iranian Gold Reserve
Part of the reasons that the vault holding Iran’s gold is so impenetrable is because nobody can actually say for sure where it’s located. Many suspect that the likely location is either in the Imperial Treasury or the Iran Central Bank, but there is truly no way to know. With virtually no information about this reserve being circulated, criminals would have a very difficult time planning a heist.
The Dominion Bank Vault
This bank is located in the Dominion Bank Building in Toronto, Canada and was once considered the most impenetrable bank in the world. It was constructed on bedrock and is wrapped by surveillance passages, making a break-in virtually impossible. There is also a 40-ton door standing in the way of the goods.
The Hard Rock Vault
Some banks protect things even more valuable than money or gold. Opened in 2001, the Hard Rock Vault is home to hundreds of priceless musical items and memorabilia. It’s located below the Hard Rock Café London, in what used to be Coutts Bank. This space holds Jimmy Hendrix’s Flying V, John Lennon’s handwritten “Instant Karma” lyrics, and more. If you’re wondering exactly how safe this underground fortress is, keep in mind that it once held the Queen’s treasury.
Although there will probably always be criminals trying to design the perfect heist, you can rest assured that institutions throughout the world continue to innovate new ways to protect what’s important to you.