yes and no..
my 442 has not had problems so it still has the lock and flag..
my 642 developed problems where it would lock up and not turn the cylinder or allow the trigger to be pulled..and very hard to release the cylinder, so I left the lock key plug in it as it is retained by a spring, but took the flag out of it.. yes it has a small pinhole in the frame where the flag used to be , but it is 100%...
I'm like kragwy, its a carry gun and it needs to be 100% functional.
But these are the only smiths that have the ILS in them I have..