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CBORD improves student safety and residence hall security at The Northeastern University

Published on 20 May, 2014
CBORD’s CS Access integrated with CS Gold campus card system and Allegion’s Schlage AD-400 wireless locks and aptiQ smart cards
The online security system replaces labour-intensive offline and key-based locks

Northeastern University (Boston, MA) is improving student safety in a big way by rolling out online door access control on 8,000 doors in its 36 residence halls and other facilities. The online security system replaces labour-intensive offline and key-based locks, better protecting students and improving efficiency. CBORD®, the leading provider of campus card and integrated security solutions to colleges and universities, is providing the easy-to-manage security solution along with long-time associate Allegion PLC, a leading global provider of security products and solutions.

Online safety strategy offers better system control, use of mobile devices

Security and convenience drove the transition away from offline residence hall room locks, which required frequent card re-encoding to make changes. Northeastern switched to CBORD’s CS Access™ for online access control, which is fully integrated with the CS Gold® campus card system already used on campus. Together with Allegion’s Schlage® AD-400 wireless locks and aptiQ® smart cards, the integrated, online solution:

  • Controls and updates locks remotely
  • Opens doors with a card, app (CBORD Mobile ID™), or text message (“Open MyDoor”)
  • Eliminates metal master keys by temporarily elevating Husky Card privileges with a text message (with prior approval)
  • Enacts quick emergency lockdowns on one or thousands of doors
  • Audits door histories and alarm states

“The online access control installation at Northeastern is really exciting,” says Max Steinhardt, CBORD’s President. “Northeastern has been using CS Gold or its predecessors since 1977, and we are proud to expand our service to the university to further improve student safety. Residence hall security is a critical aspect of any campus safety plan, and Northeastern is doing it well by choosing an online solution with secure, mobile-enabled convenience.”

Students like mobile access; administrators like safety improvements

In a recent Northeastern student survey with more than 1,100 respondents, 79% reported being satisfied or very satisfied with the new online locks, and 82% were satisfied or very satisfied with the many options to open their doors (card, app, text).

“We deliver open and flexible technologies that allow customers like Northeastern University to implement the right solution for their campus, both today and in the future”

CBORD also removes the financial and security risks of metal master keys for Northeastern’s resident assistants (RAs). When responding to lockouts, Northeastern wanted to keep its RAs from walking outside between buildings at night to retrieve master keys. RAs and other staff members can now use CBORD’s “MasterKey” feature to temporarily elevate their Husky Card privileges via text message and open residents’ doors using their own cards. This feature, which requires preapproval, has proven to be an important safety benefit.

Smart locks prepare Northeastern for the future

Allegion’s Schlage AD-400 locks are designed with the future in mind. If Northeastern moves to a different Husky Card format in the future, the lock’s reader can be easily replaced without removing the rest of the lock from the door. This modular design gives Northeastern confidence that it will not need to reinstall the locks as technology evolves.

Northeastern chose aptiQ smart cards from Allegion for their secure, encrypted reader communication. The university wanted to move away from the security risks associated with magnetic stripe technology.

“We deliver open and flexible technologies that allow customers like Northeastern University to implement the right solution for their campus, both today and in the future,” said Richard White, Vice President and General Manager, Electronics at Allegion. “Our AD-Series and aptiQ platforms, when paired with CBORD’s solutions, offer a comprehensive solution that empowers the campus to adapt to their ever-changing security needs. Allegion is proud to participate with CBORD and Northeastern University in this exciting and forward-looking campus strategy.”

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