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We specialise in security screws and are often asked to explain what makes security screws different from other screws and how they work. To answer the question “what is a security screw?” or “how does this security screw work”, it’s probably easiest to compare them with the standard screws which most people know.

The key difference that separates standard screws from security screws, and indeed what makes them secure, is the drive.

What is the drive on a screw?

The drive is the way the screw is fastened, usually through some form of recess in or on the screw head that a matching tool fits in order to turn the screw to fix it in place. Popular examples of a screw drive that you may have heard of include Pozi, Phillips, Slotted and Socket (also known as Allen Key).
When purchasing screws, security or otherwise, the drive is one of the main considerations.

So how does the drive differ on a security screw?6-lobe-pin-tx-drive

The drives on security screws tend to be more unusual. For example the Pin TX (shown here) or Pin HX security screws, feature a standard torx and socket drive respectively, but with a pin in the centre, which prevents standard tools from working with them, so special security tools are needed to fasten and unfasten them. You may have seen them and not even noticed the pin; they’re easy to miss if you are not looking for them!

Some security screws have a completely different type of drive. 2-hole security screws (also known as pig-nose fixings) for example, have 2 holes in the head which can be set at different distances and need a special tool to install them. Again, these can be fastened and removed using special security tools.

There are even a couple of drive styles that permit the use of standard tools to install, such as the clutch and sentinel drives; however the drive design on these types of security screw allows users to install but not remove (these are known as 1-way security screws).

Security screw options

There are many different types of fixing available, as you can see here in our security screws catalogue. Some are removable, some aren’t. Some offer lower level of security at an economical cost, other “premium” security fasteners may cost a little more, but offer a high level of security and full traceability. Then you might also want to consider how the screws will look when installed in your application.

We can help you to identify the best security screw for your needs, please give us a call.