As a form of risk management, access control is essential for protecting staff, information and assets and limiting the potential for unauthorised individuals to enter your facilities. Is your security up to scratch?

Access control technology has become vital for all types of businesses. As a form of risk management, access control is essential for limiting the potential for unauthorised individuals to enter your facilities.

Every business should have a risk-management plan in place that includes access control. If your location is not using access control technology, then it is not secure. Additionally, if your technology is not secure, then it is not effective.

Access control can be used in nearly any industry or setting. It offers additional security, which is becoming increasingly important. This includes the following benefits:

  • Ensure the security of a building, room or location;
  • Protect buildings from unauthorised access;
  • Ensure the security of private information and assets;
  • Increase the security of the location for employees;
  • Reduce the risk of unauthorised access.

In order to gain these advantages, the location must first be secured with the proper access control system. Learning more about these systems will give a better indication as to how and when they should be used.

Access control technology can be found in use in a wide variety of environments. This includes public parking structures, government facilities and public-transportation facilities. Some of the most commonly used access controls include:

  • Turnstiles;
  • Portable turnstiles;
  • Car park systems;
  • Revolving doors;
  • Automatic doors;
  • Ticket entry terminals;
  • Gate entry systems;
  • Biometric readers;
  • Locker access control.

Implementing several of these technologies can help to improve security. These technologies should be considered as a part of an overall electronic security system. This adds to the security of employees and assets. Access control can also help to reduce the overall cost of managing security.

Three stages of access control technology

There are three stages to the security of an access control system. If any errors occur during these stages, then the access control system may not be entirely secure. The three stages are: identification, authentication and authorisation.

Identification: the first stage of access control is identification. During this stage, the user must provide some form of identification in order to access the system – whether it is a door, turnstile, locker, gate, or some other type of object.

The most basic systems use a card or key fob to track usage. Others may require a token or key. This includes the use of turnstiles. For additional security, biometric readers and keypad entry systems are used to require specific user identification. This is used for more secure locations.

Authentication: once identification has been provided, then the system will then authenticate the information that was provided. With user access control, the system will verify that the user is authorised to access the system. With a turnstile, the system verifies that the input method is acceptable – such as ensuring the proper token or card was used.

Authorisation: after authenticating the identity or input method, the access control system will then grant or deny authorisation to the system.

Generally, the security of an access control technology will depend on the security of the first stage. The following stages are handled electronically, while the first stage requires manual entry.

Implementing the right access control technology

The use of access control systems requires careful planning and consideration. Some access control systems are more effective in specific scenarios than others. It is essential that a business or facility consider their individual security needs when selecting the right technology. The most important factors are: cost, integration, stability and updates.

These four factors will vary depending on the company that is chosen to install the access control system. After setting a budget, businesses can then consider the integration of the systems.

In order to guarantee the stability of the system, businesses should work with reputable companies for installation. Without a stable system and proper integration, the control system will be of little use.

Along with stability and integration, updates may be required. As new technologies are developed or vulnerabilities discovered, updates could be released to address these issues. Working with a trusted company will help to ensure that all systems remain updated throughout their service life.

There are many different reasons that a business or facility may require public access control system. The most common example would be the use of turnstiles for public transportation, museums and large public areas. Another example is the use of car-park systems at parking lots and parking structures.

These systems do not often require specific individual user identification. Instead, a card, key fob or token may be required to gain entry. These solutions offer a mediumlevel of security.

Depending on the specific needs of a business, an additional level of security may be required. For this, a business would need a more secure system, such as biometric readers.

On private facilities, government locations, medical facilities and within offices, it may be important to restrict access to specific areas. For this, the system will need to actually verify the identity of individuals. A turnstile would not offer the same level of security as a biometric reader attached to a door lock.

Consider layout and security of the facility

When reviewing the security of a facility, the first place to start is the layout of the building. This can be useful for choosing the right access control technologies. Several questions need to be explored in detail:

  • What areas need to be protected?
  • Who is able to enter protected areas?
  • Where can individuals walk within the building?
  • When can people have access to a protected area?
  • How can people gain access to a protected area?

The first question deals with the areas that need to be protected. Once this is determined, a business can begin considering which systems will be more effective.

Next, the business needs to decide who will have access to the area, where within the building they can go, and when to authorise access. By answering all of these questions, it becomes easier to decide how to allow people to gain access to a protected area.

As a business starts implementing an access control system, it is important to work with a company that uses the latest technologies. Malicious individuals will do everything in their power to find methods of gaining access to buildings. By using the latest technologies, these risks can be minimised.

Security and access control technology work together. When people are able to misuse or abuse these technologies, then they become worthless. For this reason, it is essential that businesses and government facilities that use regularly test the security of their access controls.

The security of a building is restricted by the systems that are put in place. The more room there is for human error, the more room there is for a security breach. When security is an issue, proper access control systems must be put in place.

This is not a decision that should be taken lightly. Review the information provided in order to choose the best security for your location. O'RiordanTechinfrastructure,management,technology
Access control technology has become vital for all types of businesses. As a form of risk management, access control is essential for limiting the potential for unauthorised individuals to enter your facilities. Every business should have a risk-management plan in place that includes access control. If your location is not...