Sounds like the most modern and sophisticated system, right? Not really. This low-tech system actually dates back to the vault's creation and works through power and computer outages.
The Federal Reserve's armed guards even have their own firing range on site to practice.
Nobody has ever tried to rob the vault, although the third "Die Hard" movie was based around a massive robbery of it.
Besides all the security, robbing the place would be a logistical nightmare.
Each bar weighs 28 pounds, but because of the density of the bars, they feel closer to 45 pounds. Workers must wear special metal covers over their shoes in case a bar falls on their feet. In one corner of the vault, the concrete floor is dented where some gold bars were once dropped.
When some workers passed by me, moving a couple million dollars' worth of bars, I made sure to stand back. I like my toes.
Not everything at the vault is super secret. In fact, 180 tourists a day are led through the vault on free guided tours. You have to listen to a speech about monetary policy but then you get to see the gold. But book far in advance, the tours are almost always at capacity.
And unfortunately, you don't get to take a little bit of gold home with you.