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Handgun safes are not required to meet standards before being put on the market in the United States. As a result, these devices are not properly evaluated for security vulnerabilities before being sold to gun owners. For the basics of handgun safe construction, see Handgun Safe Design.
Many handgun safes sold in the U.S. are imported from China, where safes are built from copied and recycled designs. Almost no engineering goes into Chinese-made safes. To learn about the security problems that result from China’s industry practices, see the Findings & iscussion page.
California’s Department of Justice is approving handgun safes for use as firearm safety devices (FSDs). Though California law does not require adequate testing, California’s FSD standards have become nation-wide standards. To learn about the shortcomings of these standards, see
Firearms Safety Devices.
Finally, despite California DOJ approval, handgun safes are often easily compromised using paperclips, coat-hanger wire, and other ordinary materials found in the office and home. See Demonstration videos for details.