Importance of Access Control Systems
Fennelly (2012) define access control as a “method of providing security by restricting the movement of people into or within a protected area” (p. 44). It offers improved ways of ensuring that the facility is secure. Access control systems are applied to regulate the movement of people that could be entering or exiting the building. The systems facilitate in setting the criteria used to determine the individuals that are allowed to access the facility or sensitive sections of the building.
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Elements of Access Control Systems
Fennelly (2012), explains that “systems can be categorized into three main elements, that is, identification, authentication, and authorization” (p. 75).
The primary goal of the access control system is to protect the facility from being accessed by unauthorized parties. It limits people from moving freely within the building. Fennelly (2012) supports that access control systems determine the identity of individuals that are entering the building and accessing other secure sections.
Authentication and Authorization
After the identity has been verified in the system, it is authenticated. Authentication is meant to ensure that the identified person has the right of access to the building. Different methods could be applied during the authentication process of the access control. They include the use of encryption passwords, fingerprints, username, and smart cards. The final step is the authorization process. The facility access control systems grant people right of access to the specific sections based on the set procedures (Fennelly, 2012).
Types of Building Access Control Systems
They are mainly fitted on the inside but, can also be fixed on the outside of the building. Intruder detection systems are meant to generate notifications after detecting a person that is gaining access to the facility. They consist of the motion detectors and intruder alarms that generate an alert after detecting an intrusion (Fennelly, 2012).
Gate Entry System
It is used for monitoring the movement of people entering and exiting the facility (Fennelly, 2012). When people are entering the building, they are offered the security clearance. It will be used by the individuals when they are accessing specific areas. Their movements can hence be monitored until they exit the building. Gate entry systems include badges and uniforms.
Biometric Readers, CCTV Camera Systems, and Videos
Biometric readers are essential to access control systems that ensure that people without the required clearance are denied rights to access to the facility. They function effectively in high-security applications areas. Biometric readers scan distinctive features of individuals, for example, handprints, iris, and fingerprint to authenticate their security clearance. They also include badge readers that are used to determine credentials of a person to deny or allow accessibility. Video surveillance offers recorded visual movement of individuals. CCTV camera provides high-resolution images. They have capture capacity that is used with specific software to recognize faces, vehicle registration numbers and other security monitoring and access functions (Fennelly, 2012).
Information Technology (IT)
Access control systems contribute significantly in deterring criminal activity in the building. Proper lighting systems will illuminate building access points and hence increases safety. Incorporating IT in security system will enhance the effectiveness of access control systems and improve security issues. The company is likely to face safety issues if it does not incorporate IT in its security design. For instance, it may risk allowing the unauthorized person to access the facilities. Intruders may fake identity and access confidential business information. Another risk includes inadequate monitoring of movement of people in the building (Fennelly, 2012).
Fennelly, L. J. (2012). Handbook of loss prevention and crime prevention. Waltham, Mass: Butterworth-Heinemann.