In a society dominated by crime, at home or business, it has never been more important to implement measures to secure the safety of valuable belongings and loved ones.
It can be argued that the simple lock and key is no longer equipped to provide this vital security. Access control is an updated and effective method of ensuring that access to a business system, certain areas of premises, or physical and virtual resources are restricted by an authority or a business.
There are two different types of access control: physical control, which restricts access to material things such as buildings, campuses and rooms, and logistical access, which limits access to connections such as computer connections, data and system files.
There are also different types of control practices, the most secure of which entails two-factor authentication.
Firstly, credentials must be presented by the person requiring access. After that, their identity must be corroborated. It can be done through an access code, a PIN or biometric reading through a biometric reader.
Access controls limit access to information and information processing systems. When implemented effectively, they mitigate the risk of information being accessed without the appropriate authorisation, unlawfully and the risk of a data breach.
They apply anywhere access is required to perform a business activity and should be adhered to when accessing information in any format, on any device.
In practice, it is not uncommon for access to information to be overly restrictive, resulting in information silos.
Whilst a focus on security and privacy is needed to protect business information and meet data protection legislation obligations, there must also be a balance with accessibility.
Opening up information assets supports collaboration and innovation, and in our experience, supports successful eDRMS (electronic document and records management system) projects.
To implement an effective access control environment, we recommend the following six areas are given careful consideration.
The Importance Of Having An Access Control System For Your Business
Intrusion Detection And Prevention
In big companies and buildings, intruders sometimes go unnoticed relatively quickly, mainly because they can appear in all forms: staff or visitors.
It is for this reason that access control systems can come to be such an advantage to companies – it doesn’t only detect intrusion, it can prevent it and track movement in a building by monitoring who has access to that building.
Control Who Has Access To Your Building
Access control systems can be customised to each individual’s specific needs. After optimising, it is possible to control who uses what doors within a business, what time of the day or which day of the week the entries are used.
Customising external and internal doors as such ensures that employees or visitors are only accessing doors, rooms and areas which they require and gives a business much regulation over the foot flow within the building. It also works well to monitor whether employees are present at work at all.
Industrial And Equipment Safety
Whether at home or a business, everyone has valuable equipment and belongings to be kept safely.
Having access control in place can ensure precisely that. It limits who has access to those belongings and restricts access to certain areas of a business or residence where valuables are stored.
To companies that work with hazardous equipment, access control is crucial since industrial accidents should be avoided at all costs. A system is required that ensures that unwanted and unauthorised personnel do not have access to the premises.
Deterrence Of Criminal Activity And Protection From Theft
As a company or building owner, one is faced with the continuous struggle concerning crime. This includes vandalism, theft, burglary, and even arson – all of which can be averted using the proper precautionary methods.
With an access control system, it is possible to monitor who has access to a business and which areas they have access to.
Such a system can also effectively detect and prevent criminal activity. CCTV cameras can be installed, any high risk or stock areas can be restricted to authorised personnel only using the two-factor authentication control system.
Protection Of Staff
With the knowledge and control of who has access to a building, when and exactly where, employers can increase the safety of their employees.
Providing a safe working environment is vital to the continued success of any company.
Electronic Visitor, History Logging And Muster Reports
With access control systems in place, it is possible to log and record every time access is granted to a property.
These reports can accurately detail time and place of entry for reviewing purposes if necessary or required later.
For security purposes, it provides the owner of the premises with peace of mind, and the company owner has an audit trail that can be accessed electronically at any time.
The Elimination Of Critical Problems
Securing premises with the short lock and key is well, simple and sometimes even very effective. But what happens when keys are lost, or the company is running on a large-scale operation?
The future cost of replacing locks or having to cut new keys can come to be rather costly. Keys can also be risky as they have the potential to be copied.
None of these issues or inconveniences come to light with an access control system. It is not only modern and state of the art, but it is also considered to be the most successful, efficient and practicable security method.
Reduce Energy Bills And Protect The Environment
Access control systems don’t only allow you to protect your building, your valuables and your staff, but also your environment through the reduction of energy used in companies.
As it is always aware of the areas being occupied, it can automatically turn off unused and therefore extreme lightning, thereby decreasing heat and electricity bills, saving companies a lot of money.
Access Control Principles
Guiding principles that provide rules for all implementations of access to networks, systems, information and data. This can include regulations relating to:
- Access approval by a registered owner (e.g. information, business or system owner)
- The sharing of personal data
- Role and group-based access
Who Determines Access?
What roles understand and approve access requests? Do you have Information on Asset Owners? In practice, will they delegate responsibility for determining access to a Line Manager?
Who Ensures Appropriate Access Is Implemented?
Is this your helpdesk? Do you have Information Champions who can ensure access is implemented correctly and that it is appropriate?
How Access Will Be Documented
Access controls must be documented to provide evidence of the rules implemented. This can be in an Information Asset Register, helpdesk system or even Active Directory.
How The Access Controls Will Be Implemented
Do you have a Business Classification Scheme or an RMS that will support the implementation of access controls? Do your new starter, transfers and leaver processes ensure access is set up, amended or revoked where and when necessary?
Periodic Audit Procedure
Access controls should be audited periodically to ensure rules align to what is needed and is documented. Would this be done by your helpdesk? Or can Information Champions help with this task?
What Are The Benefits Of Access Control?
No Need For Traditional Keys
Access control eliminates the need for traditional keys, which can quickly and often get lost or mislaid, thus creating a potential security breach.
If there are multiple rooms and buildings with restricted access, various keys are needed for each individual, which can be bulky to carry around – access control eliminates this issue.
Track Who Enters And Leaves
By tracking who enters and leaves your premises, it allows you to know who is where and when and that everyone is working where they are supposed to be.
It also means that if an incident, accident or theft occurs, you will be able to identify precisely who was in the area or space at that specific time.
An access control system can protect your staff and visitors by stopping unwanted visitors and non-authorised persons from entering your premises.
If someone without access tries to enter the building, they won’t be able to, and this significantly increases the security of your site as well as the safety of your employees and visitors.
Another benefit of an access control system is that it can reduce your overall costs. This is due to not needing to replace and supply keys, locks and employ security personnel to secure your site.
This is especially relevant in a large scale company that may have thousands of employees and multiple floors and buildings.
Instead, you will need to install one access control system that can also be integrated with your other methods such as lighting, heating and appliances, to turn off when the room or building is not in use, thus saving on energy bills.
By controlling the building access, no unauthorised individual will enter, meaning intruders will find it much harder to enter and commit theft.
Improve Employee Experience
Employees will not only feel more secure on-site but will have an improved employee experience.
They will be able to access different work areas with ease, without relying on others or security personnel to open and close buildings and rooms. This will give them more flexibility in their ways of work and will improve their overall employee satisfaction.
There are, therefore, several benefits of access control systems, and their importance is vital in maintaining a safe and secure environment.
Access Control Is Crucial For Business Owners
Due to the amount of data businesses have in their control and the potential for it to fall into the wrong hands, owners and IT managers should carefully consider access control as part of their IT and business management strategy.
The importance of access control is never more prominent than when you are considering the protection of your company data.
From employee HR paperwork, trade secrets, and product plans to personal customer details, the very essence of your business is based on data.
Every company has data, so every business must pay close attention to how they store, access and protect this valuable asset.
By now, you’re probably already sold on the importance of proper access control when it comes to keeping your business secure, so below, we’ve outlined some of the benefits you can enjoy when implementing robust access control and I.T security measures at your place of work.
- Peace of mind, your data is safe and only accessible by relevant people.
- Identification. You can see who is accessing your controlled data and when
- Your data is protected from accidental destruction from deletion or overwriting.
- Your data is protected from malicious intent.
- You can vary user permissions and block permissions easily – great for when staff leave or change roles, so they always have relevant access.
- Compliance with data privacy laws that regulate to storage, access and use of personal data
- Keep your business, its employees, and assets secure from external eyes.
- Access is centrally managed and administered via a dashboard or reporting portal.
- Deterrence. Just like a burglar alarm, access control methods are a deterrent against misuse.
- Great for businesses that need to uphold cybersecurity standards, such as banks or companies that accept and process card payments.
- Access control can be configured to suit soning, time-based access, role-based access, level-based access, count-based access, and plenty of other factors.
Is There Any Need For An Access Control System?
Businesses should strive to keep crucial information inside while keeping any threats outside.
All entities acknowledge basic security by having secure locks on the doors and entrusting some employees with the keys to restricted areas.
It is costly as well as time-consuming for your business to key and rekey every time that a key is stolen, lost, or an employee leaves with it. Fortunately, there is a solution. By answering yes to any of the questions below, you can benefit from an access control system.
- Could my clients and employees be secure?
- Do I need to have a record showing when a person enters or leaves through a given door?
- Would it be prudent to allow or restrict access based on day or time?
- Do the employees require different access privileges?
- Does a stolen or lost key to your business pose an immediate security threat?
Merits Of Access Control
Access control systems are found in different sizes and types. They come with customised solutions for each business. The most common methods are I.D. badges, wireless proximity cards as well as keypads having security codes. Your business stands to gain from a professional access control system, as highlighted below.
•Remote access control – Today, most systems allow businesses to control their locks via a remote client station or intelligent cell phone. With such scenarios, it is easy for your entity to lockdown in case of an emergency, as well as easily remove or add credentials.
•Audit Trail – Through an access control system, you will have a full report of each opening as well as door hold openings and attempted space of every area or entrance. Courtesy of audit trails, employee issues such as disputes related to time cards can be resolved.
•Stolen or lost keys – It is expensive for a business to rekey each door when keys are stolen, lost or goes with former employees. In addition, it will be a security risk if such locks are not rekeyed. Through access control systems, you may deactivate different security credentials or I.D. badges, thus quickly preventing access. This process may prevent your business from incurring losses besides saving on time.
•Day or time restrictions – It is common to have certain employees such as your janitorial staff at your business during certain days or times. To this end, it is prudent to restrict their access to such times than giving them keys that allow access any day or time.
Each business should strive to keep its valuable data and assets inside while keeping any security threats outside. Guardian Security is committed to your business’ security, and we have solutions for small businesses to large enterprises.
The Key To Access Control
- Protecting your Employees – provide a safe working environment
- Restrict unauthorised access and reduce theft – control who has access to where and at what time
- Provide remote access – does a contractor need to access buildings, but no one is on-site to let them in? You can provide access to your site remotely, and you always know who is coming and going.
- Eliminate critical problems – no more keys. You can use swipe cards, tags, fingerprints or even your mobile phone.
- Electronic visitor, history logging and reports – every access is logged and recorded. Reports allow you to see who is where in your building in case of an emergency.
Access control systems help you manage your building more securely and efficiently. Building access control systems are essential as far as dealing with crime is concerned.
As a building owner, you are faced with security challenges, including burglary, vandalism, and arson that can be prevented using appropriate access control systems.
For instance, the use of CCTV surveillance cameras is a proactive means of preventing incidences of crime, owing to the psychological intimidation that it causes on people with criminal intentions.
Contactless Access Control
Mobile access control enables mobile devices — such as smartphones and wearables — to function as credentials in accessing secured buildings, rooms and areas.
This not only increases operational convenience and efficiency for today’s mobile-enabled workforces.
It also provides a more cost-effective and more straightforward way for companies to manage identification credentials. Mobile access control can be used as either a compliment and a replacement for traditional physical cards and cards.
Social Distancing Detection
Social distancing detection can be integrated with your current security cameras, allowing you to monitor your employee’s and enforce safety measures in the workplace.
Modern video-based people counting uses IP cameras with embedded video analytics for maximum accuracy and reliability.
The cameras are typically placed above the area where you want to trust the people that enter. Authorised users can then view real-time and historical statistics from any device and location.