True Stories
175 voters

Places That Are Surprisingly Easy to Sneak Into

Updated January 4, 2018 576 votes 175 voters 14.3k views16 items

List RulesVote up the places you think you could probably sneak into (if you wanted to).

There's a certain bias many people have; let's call it "the illusion of safety." That is, believing things they think should be secure actually are. In some cases, that belief is so strong nobody even bothers to make it illegal to, say, sneak into a very important building, like a King or Queen's palace. It's just kind of assumed that would never happen.

Sure, we'd all like to believe it takes some combination of Danny Ocean and Tom Cruise to get into our most "secure" facilities, like the White House. But many times, a little bit of patience, a lot of bravery, and an axe will do just fine.

If history has taught us anything, it's that there's no such thing as truly "safe" or "secure." One determined person can make mincemeat of the best-laid defenses. It takes an entire forge to make chain mail, but a single arrow to find its weakness. That's how people can sneak into a building like a nuclear power plant. Here is a list of people and groups that broke into places you'd never believe it was possible to gain access to - with minimal effort.
  • 1. Red Square (During the Cold War)

    Photo: brando.n / flickr / CC-BY 2.0

    In 1987, a daring young lad from West Germany had a brilliantly suicidal idea: to end the Cold War by flying his tiny Cessna airplane into Russian airspace, landing right in the middle of Red Square and giving the Russians and NATO something to talk about. And he did it.

    Despite flying right through the Iron Curtain, supposedly some of the most heavily defended airspace in the world, and fully expecting to be shot down by a squadron of MiGs, 19-year-old Mathias Rust piloted his small plane right to the Kremlin's front door and landed in Red Square like he owned it. People were fired. And by "fired," we mean "shot." Mathias did succeed in a way, too; at the very least, his infiltration proved that Russia was nowhere near the dominant military power it still played at being, and Gorbachev "tore down that wall" a short time later.  
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  • 2. Scottish Castles

    Photo: neil roger / flickr / CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0
    Castles are designed to be invasions-proof - that is kind of the point of them, right? Sure, we have all kinds of modern weapons that could level any sort of fortification now, but certainly a castle would be the ideal location to protect valuable works of art against guys with an axe. Yeah, you'd think. But in 2003, Drumlangrig Castle in Scotland was broken into by four gentlemen wielding weapons that dated back to earlier than the castle itself. They stole several precious works of art, including a da Vinci masterpiece entitled "Madonna of Yarnwinder." Valued at about $40 million, it was eventually recovered by the rightful owners.
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  • 3. Celebrities' Houses

    Photo: Priya Sivaraman / flickr / CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0
    Many celebrities have been the victims of robberies, some surprisingly recently. P. Diddy's house got broken into in 2012. Rachael Bilson had her entire shoe collection stolen and Kate Moss had three pieces of artwork stolen from her house while she was home. Paris Hilton got taken for $2 million in jewelry by a group known as "The Bling Ring," which regularly targeted celebrities. They also hit Lindsay Lohan and Megan Fox.
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  • 4. SeaWorld

    Video: YouTube

    If this one doesn't make you laugh, you're just dead inside. In 2012, three Aussies got sloshed to the gills (not uncommon) and decided to take a trip to Gold Coast SeaWorld. Only problem: it was closed. So they scaled a fence, broke in, and had a grand ol' time swimming with the dolphins.

    While none of them remember exactly how it happened, the trio woke up the next day to a fascinating new houseguest: Dirk the Penguin. That's right, three guys drunkenly kidnapped a penguin from SeaWorld. Hangover 4, anyone? (Dirk was returned to SeaWorld, and the gentlemen in question used the video above in court as proof that they did not intend to harm the traumatized bird.)
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