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Door Access control Systems is the selective restriction of access to specific locations or resources within a certain facility. There are a large number of reasons why all businesses, from small offices to large corporations should be utilizing this simple and effective security tool. The future success of a company often heavily relies on keeping every detail in check and every single employee accountable, and access control greatly aids in accomplishing these goals.

Before door access control systems became reliable and effective, companies had to rely on trustworthy employees to do their jobs correctly. It was crucial for managers and employees to be in constant communication. This obviously took a lot of time and effort to accomplish. There were also many complex problems that seemed to have no solution. Over the years, access control has become increasingly more advanced and user-friendly, allowing facility managers to focus on other important aspects of running their facility.  In addition, when employers or managers did want to secure their facility, they would be forced to use lock and key systems that are easily breached, picked or copied.

Traditional Lock and Key System vs Door Access Control Systems

The traditional lock and key systems involve several individual keys tied together in a key ring used for accessing individual doors in the facility. It works wells for businesses that need access to particular area of the facility only. Many businesses still continue to utilize the lock and key system sharing and distributing keys to their employees.

Because these systems rely on mechanical locks and physical keys, the whole system can be compromised with a missing key. The occasional loss of a key requires a locksmith to change the locks and then access the facility.

Businesses started to expand and soon people faced various challenges such as with the lock and key system. Here are some challenges:

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When keys are stolen or lost, the inconvenience and expense of changing locks and re-issuing keys can be considerable.

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Making unauthorized physical copies of existing keys is a risk for the business.

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No information was available on the door access history; therefore, it was hard to know who accessed the facility.

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High wait time for locksmith to arrive at the spot instantly and unlock the facility.

Compared to a traditional key lock system, door access control systems present a variety of new features and functionalities. Office doors can be scheduled to be locked and unlocked automatically. A business can choose to program what doors in your facility would remain open during business hours and automatically locked them at the end of the day. On entrance systems equipped with accessible automatic door operators, it is possible to code certain cardholders based on their roles such as security technician or a security manager for the automatic operator to always remain open. In a lock and key system, it is clearly more cumbersome and difficult to achieve such features.

 

Clearly, there is an advanced and better solution. Gone are the days of rekeying and copying of physical keys. Door Access Control Systems is a much more effective and efficient employee-friendly approach to access your facility which offers greater security, flexibility, scalability and saves cost of rekeying involved with traditional lock and key system.

Proximity Card access control systems are the most convenient way to access your office building. Whenever a card is presented to a reader there is the benefit the event being logged in the card access control system and stored as history into the database, whenever any information needs to be retrieved relevant to the user access, a simple query can pull down the information from the system database, these information’s includes the card holder’s identity, the time of the access event and other necessary information the company wants to track about the user.

 

The advantage to any organization is an instant detailed record of every employee, contractor or cleaner entering the different areas of your facility. Obviously, there are no such possibilities with a lock and key system.

There are other types of physical authentication methods apart from proximity card access. Biometric access control systems use biometric devices such as a fingerprint reader, retinal eye scanners, hand geometry readers and, facial recognition scanners to identify the individual seeking access to your facility using cutting-edge technologies such as facial recognition, fingerprint, etc.

With the advancement of technology and innovation, access control systems are never limited, they differ based on different business requirements. Some of the common types of access control systems are Cloud-based, on-premise, mobile, discretionary, identity-based, mandatory, role-based, etc. Read more: Access Control System Types to Secure Your Facility.

 

Umbrella Technologies can help you to make the right decision to choose the best Access control system among the various options available that aligns with your business objective and deliver a clear plan to secure your facility.

Five stages of door access control technology

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Authentication

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It determines the user’s identity in order to allow access to your facility. After a user presents a credential (card or a key fob etc.) at a reader, that credential’s data is sent to the Access Control Unit (ACU), where the ACU determines if this credential is known and recognized by the system. Authenticated access is given to each user accessing the facility and their information is stored in the company’s database. ACU sends the credential to the system that verifies the user’s credential with the one in the system. If the access is valid, the user is granted access to the facility. If no match is found or it’s an unauthorized access with no entry in the database, the user is denied access to the facility. This process is highly secure and protects the employees or staffs in the facility.

There are many different ways access can be granted to users. You can set up group policies, account restrictions, passwords, PINs, and individual access to every user for every separate location. Access control is now a simple and effective tool in running a business and keeping facilities safe and secure.

Here are different strategies to authenticate your facility:

  • User id and password: This is the most common and the simplest, approach to identifying user because it is fully software-based.
  • Physical security device: A physical device, such as a proximity card, key fob, micro tag or a smart card is used to identify an individual. In some cases, a password or personal identification number (PIN) is also required to ensure that it is the right person.
  • Biometric identification: Biometrics is the science of identifying user from physical characteristics. This includes technologies such as voice verification, facial recognition, retinal scan, palm identification, and thumbprints.
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Authorization

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This level authorizes access to the user based on various authentications discussed above. The ACU determines if the user to which this credential belongs is authorized for access into the facility –

  • Does the identification criteria’s of the user match the credential used to entry the facility?
  • Does the user have access to this specific entry point of the facility?
  • Whether the user is using the right kind of credential to access the facility?
  • Whether the user is attempting to access the facility on the scheduled time?
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Access

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If the user passes the checklist programmed for authentication and authorization to allow access, the ACU then sends a command to the door locking hardware to unlock the facility door.

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Manage

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Managing an access control system includes adding or removing different entries, users, user credentials and schedules using administrative software that syncs automatically with ACUs.

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Audit and Reporting

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With access control systems, companies can keep track of who is entering and leaving your facility. This information can be valuable to business owners if a potential issue, such as theft or data breach, occurs on a specific day. They can find out who was inside buildings or rooms when the issues arose. The devices allow them to know the exact time of day employees entered and left the facility.

Access Control systems have the capability to customize the reports according to one’s needs such as generating reports for access logs, including user’s entry activity in the facility.

Key consideration when selecting door access control systems

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Location and type of property

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Buildings located near transportation and cultural centers or tourist attractions are at higher risk of criminal and terrorist activity and may need an extra layer of security.

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Building traffic

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Evaluate the collective tenant base. A retail tenant or healthcare provider with walk-in visitors will greatly increase the amount of traffic in the building.

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Cost

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Building owners should find a system that is both efficient and affordable. Many of them have found creative ways to offset the cost of an upgrade to a more advanced and expensive security system. Integration of security systems such as access control with video surveillance and emergency notification system can reduce the cost and provide complete security to safeguard your business. Switching to cloud-based access control provides much more flexibility and accessibility as compared to an on-premise access control system. Our blog on “Cloud Access Control Systems Vs. On-Premise- Which is Better?” provides the key insights that you will need to consider and help you to make the right decision.

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Life of the system

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Every Security systems should be reviewed every 3 to 5 years to ensure that systems are up to date.

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Secure necessary areas of the facility

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Firstly, it’s important to analyze your property and see what areas need monitoring. Many facilities have multiple openings that need to be secured as well as several employees who need access. The credentials need to be properly managed, documented and accommodate for multiple parties if need be. Therefore, if you’re buying an access control system, make sure it governs multiple card credentials.

More capabilities of Door Access Control Systems

Access control takes the guessing out of who did what. It also eliminates the constant stress of whether or not something is able to happen. With an access control system in place, you can have total control of who gains access to which area.  Isolate target and restricted areas enable time-restrictions and for guests deliver expiring credentials.

Access control system is the most effective system that works well when integrated with other systems.

Firstly, it easily integrates with video surveillance system that benefits organization with live video to determine what is happening at the facility in real-time.

Secondly, it integrates with an alarm system that sends alerts during any emergency.

Thirdly, it integrates with HVAC and lighting control systems for building that boost efficiency in energy usage by ensuring that buildings aren’t unnecessarily climate controlled.

Access control systems easy integration with other systems, makes the possibilities for effectiveness limitless.

Anti-Passback is a feature that can be used to prevent users from passing their credential to another user to borrow and stop users from entering the facility by simply following or tailgating another user. To use anti-passback, you can place the credential on the reader on both the entrance and the exit sides of the door.

 

Once the user has used his credential on the entrance, the same credential cannot be used again at the entrance until it has been shown to have used the exit. It is most commonly used in car parks to ensure accuracy in carpark counting and prevents a second car access on the same credential, turnstiles on construction sites using the access control system as a form of time and attendance, in high security areas Anti-Passback combines with Dual Authentication to ensure there are always two people in an area.

Why Food Manufacturers Need an Access Control System?

Access control systems plays a crucial role by restricting access to the food manufacturing units, thus ensuring quality product and business longevity.

Before starting an access control systems project for your building be sure to read the biggest mistakes end-users make so you can ensure you have the best system for your facility.

Download our comprehensive guide on planning a successful Access Control System installation

A COMPLETE GUIDE ON PLANNING A SUCCESSFUL ACCESS CONTROL SYSTEM INSTALLATION

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