Starting from scratch opens the door for cloud-based access, wireless locking devices and more
The construction of a new office building from scratch presents a unique opportunity to implement the latest and greatest in physical access control. Companies can move to the forefront of technologies: by jumping from key rings the size of a concierge to a wireless gateway, biometric access points and cloud-based security. Administrators can grant or deny access from anywhere at any time and through any network device. And with modern systems, there is less need for local infrastructure, which ultimately means lower costs for end users.
But to take advantage of this opportunity provided through new construction, companies must address the key issues from the start to maximize their physical access control capabilities and stay ahead of ever-changing security technology.
"You should make sure to install a system that is ready for the future," says Pat Barry, CEO of BluB0x, a company that specializes in cloud-based physical access control systems.
For new buildings, one of the most important changes with physical access control is the way they are wired or not wired.
Barry suggests that systems deployed in new buildings should strive to incorporate technologies that the security industry will use over the next 15 years. Recommends that customers choose access control systems that include three adjectives (unified, open and intelligent) and three names: cloud, mobile and biometric.
Companies that plan a new building may be tempted to fall into old habits, opting for a fully connected system or traditional security communication protocols like Wiegand. But security providers are encouraging companies to get out of that comfort zone to make the most of a new system.
To do that requires a bit of front-end planning. Brad Aikin, the electronics business leader for security products provider Allegion, says that all too often companies design and build a new space first and then address security as a last-minute idea. He says that physical access control should be part of the initial discussion about how space will be designed and used, and companies should plan to install physical access control along with building other systems, such as IT infrastructure.
"If you think that physical access control is a service within that ecosystem, you can really optimize not only the cost of providing security, but also the ability to use that information to effectively manage the rest of the space," says Aikin.
The new access control offers comfort and safety
The next generation physical access control systems are designed to offer security without forgetting the user's convenience. "We have moved away from providing security at the expense of convenience," says Barry. "With today's technology you can have both."
One of the most important changes with physical access control systems is the way they are connected or not connected. Aikin explains that there are more options available for wireless components, such as locks and readers, and in many cases there is no longer any server, since the cloud has replaced it.
This means that less infrastructure is needed, which translates into lower initial costs because there is not so much equipment to install on the site. "The cost of installing and managing that access point has been significantly reduced based on advances in technology," he says.
As wireless door locks are becoming more frequent, many doors, even those connected to the network, can be part of a wireless network and no longer need to have individual wired connections, explains Steve Van Till, CEO and founder of the wireless provider. security systems Brivo, Inc. More readers and controllers are consolidating within these locks, which means that less equipment is needed. "It's reducing the footprint you need to get security," says Van Till.
The elimination of expenses, the workload and the damage caused by the dragging of cables to several doors and locations throughout the building makes it possible to place electronic devices on more interior doors than in the past. This gives tenants the ability to use the same credential for perimeter doors as for interior doors, instead of having an electronic credential for exterior doors and a key for interior doors.
"There is still a place where the keys have an adjustment, but the electronic credentials that already exist for the perimeter can now be applied inside and, in general, reduce operating costs for property managers," says Aikin.
Today's physical access control systems are shifting towards network cabling and moving away from dedicated security cabling. Instead of having a large centralized control panel in a heavy wiring closet that goes to all endpoints, the new systems are eliminating the bulky control panel in favor of the edge devices with network cables connected to all the doors . As a result, it is increasingly common for companies to hire networks to run cable for physical access control systems instead of relying solely on a security company, says Van Till.