SMS Lock System in Public Rest Areas in Finland

The Finnish Road Administration has developed a system which allows travelers to open the doors to roadside toilets only by sending a SMS message to the number given by the Road Administration. There are instructions on the doors to toilets and shower rooms, advising prospective users to send a text message “OPEN” to the number given on the door. The call is directed to a modem, which then sounds a buzzer and opens the door.

The new system was introduced in January following numerous breakages, arson attempts, and thefts in the buildings housing public conveniences for motorists. The opening of the door costs just the normal SMS rate without any additional charges. The traffic centre will save the numbers of the callers for a while, but not permanently. This should somewhat raise the threshold for vandalism and reduce the damages to public property, as people will know that their phone number is down on record if they wish to trash the place. [via]

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