This Is the Most Heavily Guarded Place on the Planet

Good luck trying to get in.

this-is-the-most-heavily-guarded-place-in-the-world-EDITORIAL-697339d-REX-ShutterstockREX/ShutterstockSaying something is “as secure as Fort Knox” implies way stronger protection than you might have realized. As home to about half of the U.S. gold reserves, Fort Knox has been called the most secure vault on the planet.

You won’t be able to get too close to the United States Bullion Depository (the proper name of Fort Knox) because it’s surrounded by a steel fence. Even the building itself is hardcore, made of concrete-lined granite and reinforced by steel to help it withstand attacks, according to the U.S. Treasury.

The U.S. Treasury says Fort Knox is “equipped with the latest and most modern protective devices.” It hasn’t confirmed exactly what those devices are, but rumor has it the vault grounds are surrounded by land mines and electric fences; machine guns go off when a laser is triggered, and a radar keeps watch over the area. The Treasury doesn’t hide anything about the guards outside, though. There’s one guard box at each of the building’s four corners, plus sentry boxes by the entrance. And you won’t want to mess with them—the basement of Fort Knox has a shooting range where guards can work on their aim. Of course, they’ll never tell you that and these other 10 secrets of U.S government operations. 

If anything were to happen, the site also happens to share its home with 40,000 soldiers, family members, and civilian employees at the Fort Knox Army post. The building also has its own emergency power plant and water system. Fort Knox is also on the list of these 10 forbidden places that no one is ever allowed to visit.

Not that it would be easy to even make it this far, but the door to the vault is made of steel and concrete and weighs more than 20 tons. No single person knows how to get in. Instead, certain staff members know just one of several combinations, and they’d need to dial them separately to open the vaults.

And you thought airplane security was tough! Don’t miss these other 13 things TSA security agents won’t tell you.

Marissa Laliberte
Marissa Laliberte-Simonian is a London-based associate editor with the global promotions team at WebMD’s and was previously a staff writer for Reader's Digest. Her work has also appeared in Business Insider, Parents magazine, CreakyJoints, and the Baltimore Sun. You can find her on Instagram @marissasimonian.