Electronic keypads - Expert commentary

Automatic gates: Making the right investment for access control
Automatic gates: Making the right investment for access control

The experience of the COVID-19 pandemic has made us all more conscious of who is coming and going from our property. Whether it is a family home, business premises or public building, property owners want full control over access for protection and peace of mind. As a provider of access control technologies, we are seeing a growing demand for automated gates with a variety of access control systems. There are a number of considerations that buyers need to make when investing. And as an installer, there is advice that you can offer to help your clients make the right choice for their property. Here are some of the key considerations you’ll need to make and discuss with your client. Whomever you buy from, you should be offered more than a simple instruction manual. Electronic locks, magnetic locks and code security In the first instance, you’ll need to advise on the type of lock and access control available. Electronic locks release on the operation of the automation system to allow the gates to open. Locks are required for all non-locking (also known as reversible) operators and are recommended for any gate on a multi-user site or any gate over 2.5m. Apply the same logic to an automated gate as you would to a domestic door – for example, you wouldn’t fit your front door with a lock on the same side as the hinges or a drop bolt at the hinge end of a manual gate so why dispense with this logic when the gate is automated? Electronic locks release on the operation of the automation system to allow the gates to open There are a number of locks on the market including magnetic locks, drop locks that “shoot” a bolt into the ground and side latching locks. These are all designed for external use. While the gate itself will provide physical security, the customer will want to feel in control of who enters their property, when and for what purpose. Consider access for post and deliveries, waste disposal and visitors arriving on foot etc. There is a range of options available. Intercom systems will allow the user to vet visitors, keypad entry can allow remote access for visitors with a specific code, remote controls allow an oncoming driver to open the gates without getting out of the vehicle, and a timer control can be used to open or close the gates at certain times of the day. Vehicle detection loops can be installed discreetly under the tarmac allowing the presence of vehicles to exit the gates and prevent closing whilst obstructed. Sliding gates versus swinging gates There are a number of locks on the market including magnetic locks, drop locks that “shoot” a bolt into the ground and side latching locks Gates can be automated to either swing or to slide open and in the case of swinging gates, the opener may be concealed underground or gate mounted. The most suitable opener for your installation will depend on the space available and the type of gate selected. Concealed underground automation is ideal for highly ornate gates. However, where gates are fully infilled (typical of many timber designs), gate mounted openers are concealed from the front of the gate by the gate leaf and present a cost-effective option. The choice between slide and swing is largely down to space - swing gates require a clear space for their opening arc whilst sliding gates require space to one or both sides of the gate. Sliding gates are perhaps the best choice where the drive slopes or when drive space is limited, as they use the least space when opening. Voltage Most swing gate and sliding systems are available in 24v or 230v. The 24v systems still need 230v mains power – there is a transformer built into the 24v control panels. Deciding which voltage to use can include a combination of factors such as the material of the gates, the location of the system and the safety features you want. Concealed underground automation is ideal for highly ornate gates With wrought iron gates, the wind can pass through them whereas with fully boarded wooden gates (popular because they give full privacy) the wind has nowhere to go, so they act like sails. For commercial or industrial applications with larger entrances and a heavy gate, you may need 3 Phase 400v power (sliding gates only). Installing gate motors in confined spaces The environment in which you are fitting may well influence which gate and motor you recommend. Will it be in an exposed area which is subject to the elements? Will it be positioned on a slope? Sliding gates are perhaps the best choice where the drive slopes or when drive space is limited Installers have always faced the challenge of installing gate motors in confined spaces. When fitting a pedestrian gate, there is often limited space in which to work – potentially making an installation time consuming and technically demanding. If this is the case for you, consider a gate operator which is designed specifically for installations with limited space for manoeuvre. An example of this is the E5 compact gate operator. The operator is not only small but has an optional slide lever attachment designed for installations where there is extremely limited space, meaning that just 8cm of the pillar is needed for installation. What’s more, improved fixing points and a simple ‘hook and fasten’ process means assembly is safe, quick and straight forward. Ultimately, you’ll be looking for a good quality, reliable product with good service. Work with a supplier that offers more than just a manual. If they are happy to offer training, their time and advice when you buy, the chances are you’ll get their support long term.

The digital transformation of access control solutions
The digital transformation of access control solutions

The safeguarding of premises through the monitoring of entrance and exit points has traditionally been a very manual aspect of security. Human operators have been relied on to make decisions about who to admit and deny based on levels of authorisation and the appropriate credentials. But the access control business, like many industries before it, is undergoing its own digital transformation; one where the protection of premises, assets and people is increasingly delivered by interconnected systems utilising IoT devices and cloud infrastructure to offer greater levels of security and protection. Modern access control solutions range from simple card readers to two factor authentication systems using video surveillance as a secondary means of identification, right through to complex networks of thermal cameras, audio speakers and sensors. These systems, connected through the cloud, can be customised and scaled to meet the precise requirements of today’s customer. And it’s the ease of cloud integration, combined with open technologies and platforms that is encouraging increasing collaboration and exciting developments while rendering legacy systems largely unfit for purpose. Remote management and advanced diagnostics Cloud technology and IoT connectivity means remote management and advanced diagnostics form an integral part of every security solution.Cloud technology and IoT connectivity means remote management and advanced diagnostics form an integral part of every security solution. For example, as the world faces an unprecedented challenge and the COVID-19 pandemic continues to cause disruption, the ability to monitor and manage access to sites remotely is a welcome advantage for security teams who might otherwise have to check premises in person and risk breaking social distancing regulations. The benefits of not physically having to be on site extend to the locations within which these technologies can be utilised. As an example, within a critical infrastructure energy project, access can be granted remotely for maintenance on hard to reach locations. Advanced diagnostics can also play a part in such a scenario. When access control is integrated with video surveillance and IP audio, real-time monitoring of access points can identify possible trespassers with automated audio messages used to deter illegal access and making any dangers clear. And with video surveillance in the mix, high quality footage can be provided to authorities with real-time evidence of a crime in progress. Comprehensive protection in retail Within the retail industry, autonomous, cashier-less stores are already growing in popularity The use of connected technologies for advanced protection extends to many forward-looking applications. Within the retail industry, autonomous, cashier-less stores are already growing in popularity. Customers are able to use mobile technology to self-scan their chosen products and make payments, all from using a dedicated app. From an access control and security perspective, connected doors can be controlled to protect staff and monitor shopper movement. Remote management includes tasks such as rolling out firmware updates or restarting door controllers, with push notifications sent immediately to security personnel in the event of a breach or a door left open. Remote monitoring access control in storage In the storage facility space, this too can now be entirely run through the cloud with remote monitoring of access control and surveillance providing a secure and streamlined service. There is much to gain from automating the customer journey, where storage lockers are selected online and, following payment, customers are granted access. Through an app the customer can share their access with others, check event logs, and activate notifications. With traditional padlocks the sharing of access is not as practical, and it’s not easy for managers to keep a record of storage locker access. Online doors and locks enable monitoring capabilities and heightened security for both operators and customers. The elimination of manual tasks, in both scenarios, represents cost savings. When doors are connected to the cloud, their geographical location is rendered largely irrelevant. Online doors and locks enable monitoring capabilities and heightened security for both operators and customers They become IoT devices which are fully integrated and remotely programmable from anywhere, at any time. This creates a powerful advantage for the managers of these environments, making it possible to report on the status of a whole chain of stores, or to monitor access to numerous storage facilities, using the intelligence that the technology provides from the data it collects. Open platforms power continuous innovation All of these examples rely on open technology to make it possible, allowing developers and technology providers to avoid the pitfalls that come with the use of proprietary systems. The limitations of such systems have meant that the ideas, designs and concepts of the few have stifled the creativity and potential of the many, holding back innovation and letting the solutions become tired and their application predictable. Proprietary systems have meant that solution providers have been unable to meet their customers’ requirements until the latest upgrade becomes available or a new solution is rolled out. This use of open technology enables a system that allows for collaboration, the sharing of ideas and for the creation of partnerships to produce ground-breaking new applications of technology. Open systems demonstrate a confidence in a vendor’s own solutions and a willingness to share and encourage others to innovate and to facilitate joint learning. An example of the dynamic use of open technology is Axis’ physical access control hardware, which enables partners to develop their own cloud-based software for control and analysis of access points, all the while building and expanding on Axis’ technology platform. Modern access control solutions range from simple card readers to two factor authentication systems using video surveillance as a secondary means of identification Opportunities for growth Open hardware, systems and platforms create opportunities for smaller and younger companies to participate and compete, giving them a good starting point, and some leverage within the industry when building and improving upon existing, proven technologies. This is important for the evolution and continual relevance of the physical security industry in a digitally enabled world. Through increased collaboration across technology platforms, and utilising the full range of possibilities afforded by the cloud environment, the manufacturers, vendors and installers of today’s IP enabled access control systems can continue to create smart solutions to meet the ever-changing demands and requirements of their customers across industry.

Smart home access control growth and the future of door security
Smart home access control growth and the future of door security

There’s growing noise around smart homes and smarter security. You’ve probably heard it. But there is a place where access control and more have been smart for decades: the workplace. Home automation and IoT are still playing catch-up with the commercial sector. A new insights report from ASSA ABLOY and IFSEC Global — “The Smart Door Locks Report 2018” — measures just how fast consumer smart technology is running. According to a survey conducted for the report, 61% of households now claim to own at least one smart home device or system. Energy monitors, home CCTV cameras, intruder alarms and smart door locks are the most popular, according to the report. All these functions, of course, have been available to businesses for years.61% of households now claim to own at least one smart home device or system Educating the smart home consumer Paradoxically, report data also questions how much consumers really know about their smarter home. A surprising 42% of those surveyed, for example, were unaware they could control a smart door lock from their phone. In fact, many leading smart door lock models offer this feature, delivered by Wi-Fi or Bluetooth and an app. Despite a wealth of features offered by the latest smart door locks — remote and location-based locking/unlocking; voice activation; timed access; emailed entry alerts; and integration with smart camera and lighting systems — most people still have limited knowledge of their capabilities.  Smart technology is increasingly becoming the new norm in terms of home security  Only 14% of survey respondents described themselves as “very familiar” with what a smart lock can do. Even though most of them probably use smart access control solutions at their workplace. Secure homes through smart technology Monitoring and security are not the only drivers for smart home adoption. We humans also love convenience, and modern living presents us with problems that smart home technology can solve. Ironically, given the report’s findings, it takes a smartphone to really unlock the convenient possibilities of smarter living. The device that’s “always to hand” is central to the newest generation of smart door locks.A smart door lock is a convenient way for a landlord or agency to offer round-the-clock check-in and check-out If homeowners wish to remotely manage property access for friends and family, many smart door locks oblige. You let in guests remotely, send them a virtual digital key, or provide a temporary or single-use PIN to unlock the door. It is just as easy to revoke a digital key, if you don’t want its owner to come around anymore. This is a significant improvement over sharing physical keys — or hiding one under the doormat. We cannot be totally sure where a metal key ends up and have no way to track or cancel it once it’s “out in the wild”. Commercial access control offers such functionality as standard, of course.  In addition, smart door locks offer more than just stand-alone operation and clever functions. In a domestic setting, magic happens when locks work in harmony with a home automation system, connected by protocols like Z-Wave, ZigBee or Wi-Fi. "Smart" security on the move  The smartphone is becoming a remote control for managing a connected life beyond just home (and even workplace) security. According to Accenture, the parcel delivery services market will grow by $343 billion by 2020. Just like home security, convenience is a major driver of change. Homeowners can send guests a virtual digital key to their phones, or provide a temporary or single-use PIN to unlock the door A recent PostNord pilot in Sweden aimed to remove the inconvenience of waiting home for a postal delivery. Selected customers of some major Scandinavian e-retailers could choose to have parcels delivered inside their front door, if it was equipped with a Yale smart door lock.  Home delivery is among potential smart services covered in “The Smart Door Locks Report 2018 ”. When asked whether the ability to receive parcels securely in a porch or lobby would make them more likely to invest in a smart door lock, 79% said it would.It is easy to revoke a digital key, if you don’t want its owner to come around anymore Holiday rentals and smart home tech ASSA ABLOY research published in 2017 forecasts continued growth in the European holiday rentals sector (at 5.8% CAGR). Smart door locks are also making an impact here, at both ends of the market: for service providers — agents and homeowners — and for travellers. A smart door lock is a convenient way for a landlord or agency to offer round-the-clock check-in and check-out, without creating extra work or staff costs. Both Intersoft, in Croatia, and Hoomvip in Spain have built holiday rentals management systems around an app and the ENTR® smart door lock. Agents issue, revoke, track and manage virtual keys for all their guests, saving everyone time and hassle. Travellers use their phones and an app to unlock their apartment. For these visitors the smartphone is already an essential travel accessory. It is a boarding pass, a credit card, a travel guide, and a postcard home... why not a door key, too? And if this key is backed by a trusted home security brand — and a company with vast experience in the mature market for commercial “smart” security — better still.

Latest SALTO Systems news

SALTO highlights the importance of cybersecurity to safeguard touchless access control devices
SALTO highlights the importance of cybersecurity to safeguard touchless access control devices

Following the outbreak of COVID-19 and the pandemic everyone is living through, the uptake in touchless access control which was previously gaining in popularity has been accelerated driving digital transformation across many industries and technologies. Among these is the rapid growth of mobile and cloud-based systems that make access control a simple and secure solution for businesses to manage keys, users, and doors across multiple locations, simply and conveniently. SALTO Systems, which has been delivering state-of-the-art wire-free and keyless electronic access control solutions since 2001, is acknowledged as a pioneer in the manufacture of these electronic access control solutions. Access control products But with that convenience can come risk and security vulnerabilities for the unwary which is why it’s important to consider that as access control products – both hardware and software - become increasingly attached to networks and other smart systems via the Internet of Things (IoT) cybersecurity needs to be front and centre if it is not to provide a pathway for cyber criminals and hackers. Smart devices commonly use wireless transmission of information often referred to as OTA to deliver software Smart devices commonly use wireless transmission of information often referred to as over-the-air (OTA) to deliver software, firmware, or configuration updates. This can include the use and configuration of security devices for use on networks using NFC, BLE, and RFID. To avoid security breaches and unauthorised attempts to access or unlock data, manufacturers should encrypt and authenticate OTA data and updates and deliver them to end-users via a secure protocol. Secure opening procedure When it comes to mobile technology and the use of ‘virtual’ keys sent to smartphones, one way to do this is to use AES 128 bit encryption which helps prevent skimming, eavesdropping, and replay attacks and a secure opening procedure with the key received securely encrypted using SSL. Another is to ensure products are certified to BSI Enhanced Level IoT Kitemark™ standard which demonstrates that a connected product has a higher level of security controls in place than the market standard for its type and is generally suitable for higher value or risk applications. Assessment to this level involves BSI’s most in-depth and exacting testing and analysis. SALTO has always applied the highest security standards to both its hardware and software products which is why its access control solution was among the first from any major security manufacturer to hold both ‘Secured by Design ‘accreditation and IoT Enhanced Kitemark™ status. Eliminating security flaws Its XS4 electronic escutcheon family, as well as its associated gateways, controllers and wall readers, are all Enhanced Level IoT Kitemark™ approved under the scheme as is the NEO electronic cylinder family and its tough new NEOxx electronic padlock product. Some manufacturers do not invest enough in eliminating potential security flaws from their systems" SALTO Systems Limited MD, Ramesh Gurdev says: “New security challenges will confront us as technologies accelerate and it’s important to stay ahead of the curve. Some manufacturers do not invest enough in eliminating potential security flaws from their systems, and this can be common in many entry level access products imported from Asia and elsewhere. At SALTO we’re driven by continuous improvement and committed to developing the most technologically advanced and flexible electronic locking solutions for any kind of door and user need.” Access control technology “Now we are synonymous with innovative solutions that set new standards in security, manageability, flexibility, and design that bring real-world benefits and this continues to set us apart. More recently, SALTO’s technological expertise has brought us to a leading position in both cloud-based access control technology and mobile access solutions.” “We’re proud that our NEO cylinder family now holds both ‘Secured by Design’ accreditation and Enhanced Level IoT Kitemark™ status as both are increasingly important in the specification of access control systems. Such awards mean we exceed the market standard for a number of security products across our access range which provides SALTO customers with the confidence that they are using some of the most technologically advanced and secure products available on the market today.”

SALTO Neo electronic cylinder gains BSI enhanced level IoT Kitemark™
SALTO Neo electronic cylinder gains BSI enhanced level IoT Kitemark™

SALTO Systems, front-runners in wire-free networked, wireless, cloud and smartphone-based access control solutions; announce that the SALTO Neo electronic cylinder is their latest product to gain the coveted BSI Enhanced Level IoT Kitemark™ for access control systems. Designed for doors where fitting an electronic escutcheon is not possible or required, the compact SALTO Neo Cylinder can be installed on standard doors, server racks, gates, cabinets, electric switches, sliding doors, and more. It’s also available in an extensive range of models, including a new tough next-generation electronic padlock, and is suitable for use on almost any kind of door from Europe to ASIA to the Americas. IoT security IoT is a network of smart devices and systems when connected, enables the exchange of data to provide services, efficiency and innovation BSI (British Standards Institution) has been part of this collaborative work to give clarity on best practices for IoT security, subsequently developing a scheme to assess connected/IoT devices. The scheme determines whether a product has the appropriate security controls for its intended use and is suitably supported throughout its intended life. This cyber/physical security scheme forms the security element of the BSI Kitemark for IoT/Connected products. The IoT is typically a network of smart devices and systems that can be connected, enabling data to be exchanged to provide services, efficiency, and innovation. Its technology can positively enhance lives and businesses, but the complexity of IoT also means that those of criminal intent may attempt to access it to steal data, hack cameras, enter buildings or otherwise breach security. Advanced security testing Like the already approved XS4 One electronics locks product family and BLUEnet wireless peripherals, SALTO controllers and readers, to achieve certification the SALTO Neo family of electronic cylinders had to undergo advanced security testing for vulnerabilities and security flaws in BSI’s state of the art IoT laboratory enduring BSI’s most in-depth and exacting testing and analysis. The SALTO Neo Cylinder provides an effective and convenient way of securing a building or assets. The clutch system is energy efficient, dropping power consumption to impressively low levels resulting in 100,000 / 130,000 operations from just one set of batteries. Standby power consumption is also reduced, further extending battery life. IP66-rated and certified Now IP66-rated, the SALTO Neo Cylinder is weather-resistant, making it especially suitable for outdoor use, even in the harshest of environments. Inside the tough SALTO Neo Cylinder exterior is the latest in electronic lock technology. Certified to the highest security standards, and incorporating ever-higher quality and reliability, the SALTO Neo Cylinder offers value far beyond security, however. It also provides greater control over the door by offering users access to audit trails, reports, alerts and much more. SALTO Systems Limited MD Ramesh Gurdev said, “We’re proud that our SALTO Neo cylinder family now holds both ‘Secured by Design’ accreditation and IoT Kitemark™ status as both are increasingly important in the specification of access control systems. The award means we now exceed the market standard for a number of security products across our access range which provides SALTO customers with confidence that they are buying one of the most secure products available on the market today.”

Wave XS by SALTO offers 100% touch-free access control
Wave XS by SALTO offers 100% touch-free access control

The Wave XS is a smart, fast and reliable access control solution with a touchless button that permits easy and clean operation for a large number of activator devices. Upgrading to touchless access control allows for hands-free entry, eliminating the need to make contact with common touchpoints upon entry and creating a more hygienic environment for everyone. Wave XS reader technology offers 100% touch-free automated access control. Depending on the configuration, the Wave XS reader’s capacitive technology can sense hand gestures. All the user has to do is approach the door and their hand activates the door to open, which makes for simple operation and eliminates the need to touch any surface. Automatic door opening hardware With the Wave XS standard reader range, one can easily install hands-free automatic door opening hardware on an existing electrified door to eliminate that added touchpoint and promote a touchless, disability compliant workplace. The solution can also be integrated with the SALTO Systems controller (CU) product range which delivers seamless integrations with lifts, turnstiles, and parking garages to further reduce touchpoints throughout a building. Push-button technology Automatic door technology is expected to revolve around innovation along with the development of smart touchless access Contactless push-button technology has advanced in recent years, with devices activated by proximity using microwave, infrared, and laser sensors. Within the context of the global pandemic, automatic door technology is expected to revolve around innovation and the development of smart touchless access that avoids contact and creates safer spaces. Some of these systems allow doors to be opened by simply bringing the hand to within just a few centimetres from the reader device. As SALTO Systems has long leveraged electronic locking solutions that enhance any door or building with elegant electronic locks, cylinders, locker locks, and readers, they do so again with the SALTO Wave XS reader. Wave XS features and characteristics Developed by the Conlan SALTO Group Company, the Wave XS reader will help combat the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus as well as future germ threats and help reinforce safety within building spaces. Hands-free wave to unlock touchless technology (Infrared) 2 Outputs (Open collector) Black and white faceplate & surface mounting Compact design with standard wiring IP65 protection rated for indoor and outdoor use Several design, text and symbol configurable options Operating temperature: -20°C ~ +70°C Voltage interval: 12 – 24 VDC, 30 mA Compatible with SALTO Space and SALTO KS technology platform

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