Definition of time lock in US English:

time lock


  • 1A lock fitted with a device that prevents it from being unlocked until a set time.

    • ‘The story was one of a six-year-old boy accidentally locked into a bank strongroom, which can only be opened by an internal time lock after sixty-three hours.’
    • ‘Mr Topham said the safes were on time locks and the robbers waited for both to open before stealing an estimated £10,000.’
    • ‘One of the men jumped over the counter to gain access but then discovered the safe was on a time lock.’
    • ‘Display notices if your safe is using a time lock and make sure your CCTV cameras cover risk or hold up points.’
    • ‘On Sunday night the couple, who run Darfield Post Office in Barnsley, were held for 12 hours by armed men who waited for the time lock to switch off before escaping with up to £100,000.’
    • ‘The thieves ordered him to open the safe, but because it was on a time lock he could not.’
    • ‘Rescuers were forced to drill a hole through the door to get to her because the vault had a time lock that stopped it opening until the next morning.’
    • ‘The couple were tied up and held at gunpoint by two masked men until the time-lock on the safe at the post office near Barnsley was activated on Monday morning.’
    • ‘They then waited for the rest of the staff to arrive this morning and ordered them into a back room until time-locks released the doors to the vault.’
    1. 1.1 A device built into a computer program to stop it from operating after a certain time.
      • ‘It's a time lock, which means that after a certain period of time, the virus is automatically purged from the system.’


[with object]
  • 1Secure (a door or other locking mechanism) with a time lock.

    • ‘They then smashed down a shutter but were unable to gain access to the safe because it was time-locked and they were forced to leave empty-handed.’
    • ‘A number of the safes were time-locked but the thieves did succeed in gaining access to one and stuffed an undisclosed amount of cash into bags.’
    • ‘The raiders demanded the safe be opened, but it was time-locked.’
    • ‘He might have learned in those two years that the store's safe is time-locked at 9, but he started the robbery at 9:15 and thus got no money.’
    • ‘The two raiders discovered that the bank safe was time-locked and fled without getting any money.’
    1. 1.1 Link (something) inextricably to a certain period of time.
      ‘an overdone theme tends to time-lock a setting and stifle imagination’


time lock

/ˈtaɪm ˌlɑk//ˈtīm ˌläk/