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Extending access control to the perimeter

Cardax FT now integrates the unique advantages of advanced PowerFence™ perimeter security through high-level integration.  The integrated solution enables sites to manage system-wide security through one management platform, through a single user interface.  Curtis Edgecombe, General Sales Manager for Gallagher Security Management Systems, the manufacturer of both systems, believes it's a world first.

PowerFence™ systems are safe electric fence systems designed to both deter and detect would-be intruders.  They have been proven over more than 20 years and installed on a wide variety of sites from general commercial to defence.

Cardax systems too have been designed and developed over more than 25 years.  The latest technology platform, Cardax FT, is a Microsoft® Windows® based security system now extending beyond its description as an electronic access control and intruder alarm system.

High Level Integration with PowerFence™ Trophy FT means that perimeter security is now fully supported in the Cardax FT system.  PowerFence™ Trophy FT Fence Controllers, Keypads and Fence Zones are all directly configured in the Cardax FT Command Centre, the management system. 

"The integrated solution centralises alarms management," says Curtis.  Alarms generated through the PowerFence™ Trophy FT system components are monitored and processed through Cardax FT Command Centre alarm windows and site plans or through PowerFence™ Trophy FT Keypads installed onsite.  Using a PDA, alarms can also be processed by mobile security guards through Cardax FT Online Manager, the web interface to the Cardax FT system which was released earlier this year. 

Curtis believes that the integration between the Cardax and PowerFence™ systems is ideal for any organisation with distributed sites requiring a comprehensive security solution.  "The Cardax FT system architecture supports the management and monitoring of remote sites for central or distributed alarms management.  Companies in the utilities, telecommunications, ports, airports and supply chain logistics sectors will find their security much easier to manage and maintain through a single user interface", he says.

All the extensive features of Cardax FT Command Centre are available including site plans and the comprehensive audit trail and reporting options.  Curtis remarks, "Perhaps five of the most exciting features of the Cardax FT system for PowerFence Trophy FT applications are its scalability, network compatibility, integration possibilities, system architecture and ability to implement Cardax FT electronic access control and intruder alarms."

The scalability of the Cardax FT system means additional PowerFence™ Trophy FT perimeter security fences can be installed and configured over time.  Subject only to the communications network, there are no hard limits set on how large the system can grow.

Designed for TCP/IP networks, Cardax FT Controllers can be installed on an organisation's existing LAN or WAN.  A separate network does not need to be established plus there's the added benefit of downloadable software upgrades making the system much easier and less costly overall to maintain.  Cardax FT communications over the network are secured using 40 bit SSL encryption as standard (higher encryption levels are available for high security applications).

Cardax FT has been designed as the platform for integration.  It has standard interfaces available to support the integration of third party systems for:

  • Imaging and intercom systems
  • Elevator and building management systems such as air conditioning and lighting
  • Sharing cardholder data with systems such as PeopleSoft® and SAP®

"Not only are there opportunities to generate business efficiencies and improve data management, overall site security can be vastly improved through integration," says Curtis.  "For example, images can be linked from a DVR system to an alarm raised in response to an intruder attempt on a particular Fence Zone of the PowerFence perimeter fence."

Cardax FT Controllers are intelligent field controllers, which make security decisions in the field independent of the Cardax FT Command Centre (the management system).  Distributed intelligence together with the peer-to-peer communications between Cardax FT Controllers, means the system architecture is robust, efficient and extremely flexible.  For example, a PowerFence™ Trophy FT Keypad configured on one Cardax FT Controller can control alarm zones configured on other Cardax FT Controllers residing on the same network.

From a hardware perspective, PowerFence™ Trophy FT Fence Controllers and Keypads connect directly to Cardax FT Controllers. The communications between the Cardax FT Controllers and PowerFence™ Trophy FT units are secured using AES 40 bit encryption, and, as with other Cardax FT devices, are monitored.  Curtis explains, "This means whether it's a Cardax reader or a PowerFence Trophy FT Fence Controller, any disruptions to communications will cause an alarm."

Cardax FT itself is well established as an electronic access control and intruder alarm system.  "The PowerFence Trophy FT integration provides the opportunity to implement layered security, from the outside in, at your own pace," says Curtis. 


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