Electronic keypads - Expert commentary

Why face recognition as a credential is the ideal choice for access control?
Why face recognition as a credential is the ideal choice for access control?

In the field of access control, face recognition has come a long way. Once considered too slow to authenticate people's identities and credentials in high traffic conditions, face recognition technology has evolved to become one of the quickest, most effective access control identity authentication solutions across all industries. Advancements in artificial intelligence and advanced neural network (ANN) technology from industry leaders like Intel have improved the accuracy and efficiency of face recognition. However, another reason the technology is gaining traction is due to the swiftly rising demand for touchless access control solutions that can help mitigate the spread of disease in public spaces. Effective for high volumes Face recognition eliminates security risks and is also virtually impossible to counterfeit Modern face recognition technology meets all the criteria for becoming the go-to solution for frictionless access control. It provides an accurate, non-invasive means of authenticating people's identities in high-traffic areas, including multi-tenant office buildings, industrial sites, and factories where multiple shifts per day are common. Typical electronic access control systems rely on people providing physical credentials, such as proximity cards, key fobs, or Bluetooth-enabled mobile phones, all of which can be misplaced, lost, or stolen. Face recognition eliminates these security risks and is also virtually impossible to counterfeit. Affordable biometric option Although there are other biometric tools available, face recognition offers significant advantages. Some technologies use hand geometry or iris scans, for example, but these options are generally slower and more expensive. This makes face recognition a natural application for day-to-day access control activities, including chronicling time and attendance for large workforces at construction sites, warehouses, and agricultural and mining operations. In addition to verifying personal credentials, face recognition can also identify whether an individual is wearing a facial covering in compliance with government or corporate mandates regarding health safety protocols. Beyond securing physical locations, face recognition can also be used to manage access to computers, as well as specialised equipment and devices. Overcoming challenges with AI So how did face recognition become so reliable when the technology was once dogged by many challenges, including difficulties with camera angles, certain types of facial expressions, and diverse lighting conditions? Thanks to the emergence of so-called "convolutional" neural network-based algorithms, engineers have been able to overcome these roadblocks. SecurOS FaceX face recognition solution FaceX is powered by neural networks and machine learning which makes it capable of authenticating a wide range of faces One joint effort between New Jersey-based Intelligent Security Systems (ISS) and tech giant Intel has created the SecurOS FaceX face recognition solution. FaceX is powered by neural networks and machine learning which makes it capable of authenticating a wide range of faces and facial expressions, including those captured under changing light, at different resolution levels, and varying distances from the video camera. Secure video management system A common face recognition system deployment begins with IP video cameras that feed footage into a secure video management system connected to a video archive. When the software initially enrolls a person’s face, it creates a "digital descriptor" that is stored as a numeric code that will forever be associated with one identity. The system encrypts and stores these numeric codes in a SQL database. For the sake of convenience and cost savings, the video server CPU performs all neural network processes without requiring any special GPU cards. Unique digital identifiers The next step involves correlating faces captured in a video recording with their unique digital descriptors on file. The system can compare newly captured images against large databases of known individuals or faces captured from video streams. Face recognition technology can provide multi-factor authentication, searching watchlists for specific types of features, such as age, hair colour, gender, ethnicity, facial hair, glasses, headwear, and other identifying characteristics including bald spots. Robust encryption SED-compatible drives rely on dedicated chips that encrypt data with AES-128 or AES-256 To support privacy concerns, the entire system features an encrypted and secure login process that prevents unauthorized access to both the database and the archive. An additional layer of encryption is available through the use of Self-Encrypting Drives (SEDs) that hold video recordings and metadata. SED-compatible drives rely on dedicated chips that encrypt data with AES-128 or AES-256 (short for Advanced Encryption Standard). Anti-spoofing safeguards How do face recognition systems handle people who try to trick the system by wearing a costume mask or holding up a picture to hide their faces? FaceX from ISS, for example, includes anti-spoofing capabilities that essentially check for the "liveliness" of a given face. The algorithm can easily flag the flat, two-dimensional nature of a face mask, printed photo, or image on a mobile phone and issue a "spoof" alarm. Increased speed of entry Incorporating facial recognition into existing access control systems is straightforward and cost-effective Incorporating facial recognition into existing access control systems is straightforward and cost-effective. Systems can operate with off-the-shelf security cameras and computers. Users can also leverage existing infrastructure to maintain building aesthetics. A face recognition system can complete the process of detection and recognition in an instant, opening a door or turnstile in less than 500ms. Such efficiency can eliminate hours associated with security personnel checking and managing credentials manually. A vital tool Modern face recognition solutions are infinitely scalable to accommodate global enterprises. As a result, face recognition as a credential is increasingly being implemented for a wide range of applications that transcend traditional access control and physical security to include health safety and workforce management. All these capabilities make face recognition a natural, frictionless solution for managing access control, both in terms of performance and cost.

Key-centric access management system: providing the highest possible levels of security
Key-centric access management system: providing the highest possible levels of security

In daily work and life, various locks have always played the role of protecting asset safety. In different usage scenarios, the most appropriate lock must be selected to maximise benefits. In the past applications, the difficulties encountered by managers are as follows. Unlocking authority is difficult to control, unclear access records, emergency unlocking, and troublesome upgrade and installation. Through the following points, how the key-centric access management system solves such problems. Access management system The key-centric access management system, also known as intelligent passive electronic lock system, which is based on three elements: electronic keys, electronic cylinders and management software, can provide powerful and traceable access control. Each smart key is unique and cannot be copied, and in the event of loss or theft, these keys can be quickly disabled. Each smart key is unique and cannot be copied, and in the event of loss or theft, these keys can be disabledIn the process of using traditional mechanical locks, it is not difficult to find that it is quite complex to realise the access control of unlocking. The difficulty is that the keys can be copied at will, the use records are not clear, and the credibility of employees cannot be guaranteed... etc. For managers, this is a safety issue that cannot be ignored. Mechanical lock system And through the key-centric access management system, we can accurately assign access authority for each user, and set different access authority for locks in different areas. For example, we can set the XX user to have access to the archive room (A) from 10:00 on May 1, 2021 to 17:00 on June 1, 2021, within this time range. Outside this time range, there will be no unlock authority. The flexibility of the traditional mechanical lock system is insufficient. There is no clear record to determine who entered the area. It is usually a simple paper record that records the unlocking records of the employees. The authenticity and validity of the system need to be examined. In the key-centric access management system, when an employee unlocks the lock, the unlock record will be synchronised to the management terminal. Remote authorised unlocking With the key-centric access management system, remote authorised unlocking can be realised Through secondary records, managers can easily track employees and supervise employees' visits to each area. In daily work, there are often emergencies that require temporary visits to certain specific areas. If you encounter a situation where the distance is extremely long, and you don’t have the key to that area, you can imagine how bad this is. The process of fetching the keys back and forth is time-consuming and laborious. With the key-centric access management system, remote authorised unlocking can be realised. You can apply for the unlocking authority through the mobile APP, or you can temporarily issue the unlocking authority for the area on the management terminal, which saves time and effort. When faced with the failure of ordinary mechanical locks to meet management needs, some managers can already think of upgrading their management system, that is, the intelligent access control system. Passive electronic locks But before making this decision, the manager will inevitably consider the various costs brought about by the upgrade, including installation costs (cable cost), learning costs, and maintenance costs. Since most of the universal intelligent access control systems on the market require wiring and power supply, the cost of transformation and upgrading is quite high for managers who have such a huge amount of engineering. The key-centric access management system is the ‘gospel’ for managers. Since passive electronic locks and ordinary mechanical locks have the same size, they can be directly retrofitted to existing hardware, and they can be replaced step by step simply and easily. At present, the key-centric access management system is being known and applied by more and more managers and enterprises. Application industries include, such as power utilities, water utilities, public security, telecommunication industry, transportation, etc.

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.

Latest Hirsch / IDENTIVE news

Identiv’s COVID-19 response solutions support enterprises and government customers in reopening of global offices
Identiv’s COVID-19 response solutions support enterprises and government customers in reopening of global offices

Identiv, Inc. has announced its cohesive collection of COVID-19 response solutions in order to support enterprises and government customers in worldwide offices that are now reopening. Identiv’s frictionless, touchless solutions create healthier and more hygienic offices. The hands-free technology also streamlines transactions and access, temperature tracking, and contact tracing to help employees and visitors feel safe and secure. Frictionless, hands-free technology “With the threat of COVID-19 still around us, frictionless, hands-free solutions are a key part of any organisation’s efforts to make a healthier, safer environment,” said Steven Humphreys, Identiv Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Identiv’s highly secure access and identity solutions address multiple business needs to re-open and grow" Steven adds, “Identiv’s highly secure access and identity solutions address multiple needs for businesses to re-open and grow again in the new pandemic-era normal.” Quick, affordable temperature tracking “As large public venues begin to reopen, quick, affordable temperature tracking will be the first line of defense to assure visitors and employees that operators have their safety at top of mind,” added Dr. Manfred Mueller, Identiv Chief Operations Officer (COO) and General Manager, Identity. Dr. Mueller adds, “For those not yet comfortable returning to work, secure network log-in options facilitate a bridge between on-site and telecommuting teams.” Identiv’s complete portfolio of COVID-19 response solutions include: Smart, frictionless access control MobilisID uses the latest in Bluetooth and capacitive technologies to allow complete frictionless access, no touching required. The MobilisID App (available via Apple iOS and Android) acts as a physical credential — the user can keep their mobile device in their pocket, wave their hand near the MobilisID Reader and the door automatically unlocks. MobilisID can also integrate with ADA-compliant automatic door hardware to form a complete touchless solution. With the Freedom access control system, no reader is even required at the door. Freedom’s software-defined architecture uses the location of a user’s mobile device to determine their proximity to a door for hands-free ingress and egress. The system can also be used in parallel with conventional reader doors. Frictionless, battery-less uTrust UHF Credentials work with identification applications that require long-distance reading (i.e., more than 18 - 21 feet). Ultra high-frequency (UHF) technology is ideal for parking lot access and gate control, door entry in hospitals or gated communities, logistics, object and people tracking in emergency situations, real-time locationing, cafeteria access, and any hands-free environment, including medical or care facilities, club and resort membership, sport facilities, and universities. The credentials can be read through badge holders, handbags, pockets, and  No-touch time and attendance uTrust 3721 F multi-technology smart card reader features multiple frequency options and a keyboard emulation. Perfect for employers who use a mixture of technologies for logical access, uTrust 3721 F leverages existing 125 kHz low-frequency (LF) or 13.56 MHz high-frequency (HF) cards. Out-of-the-box, uTrust 3721 F can work with most time and attendance systems, letting employees simply tap a card to the reader to clock in.  Nearly hands-free transactions and access With Near Field Communication (NFC) technology, it’s easy to get near an access point without ever actually touching it. Identiv’s NFC-enabled solutions feature a catalogue of transponders compatible with NFC Forum created for secure contactless transactions and connecting electronic devices with a simple tap-and-go model. Designed for comfort and wearability, the uTrust Proximity Wristband keeps wearers from reaching for their phone or card every time they need to gain access to a parking garage, building, room, or elevator. A passive radio frequency identification (RFID) device, the no-battery credential is robust, resistant to cracking, and impervious to moisture.  Temperature tracking and contact tracing Identiv’s Body Temperature Measurement Patch is a wearable NFC-enabled transponder that supports the reopening of public spaces worldwide, including theme parks and stadiums, and helps operators keep attendees and employees comfortable, confident, and safe. The patch also supports global governments and healthcare workers that need to periodically monitor quarantined patients diagnosed with COVID-19. The new solution combines the simplicity of using NFC and the smart technology potential of the Internet of Things (IoT), making body temperature monitoring easier than ever. Identiv has partnered with Telaeris to deliver a rapidly deployable, industry-renowned, mobile access control hardware and software solution that provides security in a variety of mission-critical situations where traditional systems cannot be supported. By leveraging Telaeris’ mobile credential verification hardware, Hirsch Velocity Software-based access control systems can go beyond protecting the perimeter and empower security staff to authenticate and authorise users with photos from anywhere, at any time, with real-time server synchronisation. Telaeris handheld units with HealthCheck functionality can prompt staff to ask a series of health questions and input the taken temperature of a validated user to create a ‘health/access check’ profile upon entering which can then be repeated upon exiting. If a person enters a building and is later found to be symptomatic, Hirsch Velocity Software with Contact Tracing can pull a report of everyone who entered the same door who can then be notified to either get tested or self-quarantine. While this is useful during the days of COVID-19, it can also be used for other applications, such as the seasonal influenza. This means every office can be proactive in responding to potential outbreaks, while simultaneously providing employees with the peace of mind that there are measures in place to keep them safe.  Working from Home For some organisations, even as worldwide economies are restarting, employees continue to or are more comfortable working from home. Identiv’s smart card reader portfolio keeps work flowing while ensuring everyone’s data and health stays safe and secure. Top selections for secure network log-in while telecommuting include, uTrust Token Pro Mini Type A (smallest form factor, strong PKI, and Java Card technology, uTrust Token Pro Mini Type C (USB C and can feature user branding and applets), uTrust 2700R Contact (supports all PC operating systems and cards ICs), 0 USB (ultra-compact, CAC and PIV-approved, and available in USB C, uTrust 4701 F Dual Interface (combines contact, contactless, and NFC tech), and uTrust SmartFold SCR3500 A (USB A, ultra-compact, and CAC and PIV-approved). As the economy begins to open up and people around the world return to work, it’s critical to have solutions in place that keep employees and visitors feeling safe, comfortable, and confident.

Identiv’s Hirsch Velocity access control platform now enables contact tracing for Hirsch customers
Identiv’s Hirsch Velocity access control platform now enables contact tracing for Hirsch customers

Identiv, Inc. announced the availability of Hirsch Velocity Software with Contact Tracing. Available via download for Hirsch customers, the free feature has been launched to support worldwide office re-openings with improved health and safety management tools. Based on the Centers for Disease Control and Preventions’ (CDC) recommendations, contract tracing is a key strategy for preventing further spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).  Hirsch Velocity Software with Contact Tracing is a means of proactively and reactively protecting visitors. If a person enters a building and is later found to be symptomatic of an illness, Velocity can pull a report of everyone who entered the same door who can then be notified to either get tested or self-quarantine. The feature is free, easy to download, and simple to implement into existing Velocity physical access control system (PACS) platforms.  Manage access control While this is useful during the days of COVID-19, it can also be used for other applications, such as seasonal influenza" “While this is useful during the days of COVID-19, it can also be used for other applications, such as seasonal influenza,” said Mark Allen, Identiv GM, Premises. “This means your office can be proactive in responding to potential outbreaks, while simultaneously providing your employees with the peace of mind that there are measures in place to keep them safe.” Hirsch Velocity Software provides the security and functionality expected from high-end systems with the ease-of-use found in entry-level packages. Velocity is an integrated platform that manages access control and security operations in thousands of different facilities, from single high secure rooms to multi-building, multi-location campuses with the most stringent security compliance. Prevent unwanted access With Velocity, users can control doors, gates, turnstiles, elevators, and other equipment, monitor employees and visitor behaviour, prevent unwanted access, maintain compliance, and provide a robust audit trail. The latest version of the software platform is designed to deliver the highest level of security, interoperability, and backwards compatibility, and it accommodates the evolution of security technology.

Identiv's Hirsch Velocity physical access control solution approved by the UK Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure
Identiv's Hirsch Velocity physical access control solution approved by the UK Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure

Identiv, Inc. has announced that after extensive testing of its Hirsch Physical Access Control System (PACS) CPNI solution, the platform is now approved by the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI), the UK government authority for protective security advice to the country’s national infrastructure. CPNI-approved physical access control platform The CPNI works with partners in government, police, industry, and academia to protect the nation from threats and terrorism, only recommending physical security equipment that meets its stringent certification requirements.  “UK sites classified as critical infrastructure, where deep encryption standards are paramount, can confidently deploy the Hirsch CPNI-approved physical access control platform,” said Mark Allen, Identiv General Manager, Premises Security Solutions. Hirsch Velocity Software Hirsch products, like our innovative Scramblepad readers, protect critical government and infrastructure facilities" Mark adds, “Hirsch products, like our innovative Scramblepad readers, protect critical government and infrastructure facilities across the UK, the U.S., and other governments around the world. Our CPNI-approved Hirsch Velocity Software security management system provides a highly scalable, end-to-end physical access control solution from the door to the server cluster, ideal for mission-critical environments. He further stated, “We are proud to continue to work with the UK government’s risk-critical sites to provide the most robust, reliable, highly secure yet cost-effective access control solution.” Hirsch PACS CPNI solution The Hirsch PACS CPNI solution encompasses Identiv’s highly secure product portfolio, including Hirsch Velocity Software, Hirsch Mx-8 Controllers, and Secure Network Interface Board 3 (SNIB3). Identiv’s suite of advanced access control solutions is approved for use in some of the world’s most security-sensitive organisations, including many UK government agencies. Hirsch Velocity Software’s security management system is an integrated platform that manages access control and security operations across thousands of disparate facilities, from single highly secure rooms to multi-building, multi-location campuses, with the most stringent security compliance. Hirsch Mx-8 Controllers Users can control doors, gates, turnstiles, elevators, and other equipment, monitor employees and visitors as they move around a facility, prevent unwanted access, maintain compliance, and provide a robust audit trail. Hirsch Mx-8 Controllers provide scalable, networked communication and are also available in two or four supervised door models. The modular design and scalable architecture enable an installation to start small and grow large, from a single controller system to a larger, multi-site enterprise. The Mx Controller is fully firmware, function, and communication protocol compatible with Hirsch systems so that existing credentials, readers, and databases can be retained. SNIB3 communication device SNIB3 is a renowned communication device that provides IPv6, Gigabit Ethernet, and AES 256 bit encryption SNIB3 is a renowned communication device that provides IPv6, Gigabit Ethernet, and AES 256 bit encryption. These features are already foundational for the critical U.S. FICAM security standard. For deployments already equipped with a Hirsch solution, SNIB3 is a drop-in replacement for Identiv’s SNIB2 and SNIB communications boards. Identiv Global Services Identiv Global Services (IGS) provides a comprehensive cybersecurity-hardening service to ensure the solution is deployed to the rigorous CPNI standard. This covers securing the operating system, database, and services, including all Identiv-supplied server components and networking equipment, as well as the Velocity client workstation. To protect against the rapidly evolving threat landscape, IGS through service-level agreement (SLA) supports the customer and the solution, updating security patches and applying the latest information assurance guidelines following UK standards and best practices.

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