One Size Fits All?
The new approach to the door opening that is changing the industry.
By Martin Huddart, Vice President, Electronic Access Control for ASSA ABLOY
We live in a world of constant change. The security industry is no exception. Every day decision-makers are faced with not only ensuring the safety and security of personnel and property, but are also required to achieve new compliance standards, without the necessary budget or additional resources to do so.
I recently had the opportunity to speak with Rodney Bosch from Security Sales & Integration about the growing medium security market that’s changing the industry as we know it. In the article, Cracking the Electric Lock Marketplace, we discussed the benefits of electro-mechanical locks and how they’ve become a new player in medium security access control.
Looking at the big picture, access control allows us to enforce policy through technology and apply it on a sliding scale. This means that we don’t have to apply a one size fits all model, especially when many of the openings are non-traditional (non-door) openings.
This sliding scale can be explained by a security technology continuum that illustrates the full range of options, from patented key systems to full-featured, online integrated locksets with many options in between. This allows a facility to upgrade padlocks and gates to support audit and centralized control of access as well as extend the security envelope to include, not only perimeter doors, but interior doors as well, that were typically too expensive to include in traditional access control.
I believe the middle of this continuum, or the medium security segment, is the fastest growing segment in the industry. A broad suite of products has become available; from $200 mechanical locks up to $3,000-$4,000 online access controlled openings.
We have found that integrators and end users are seeking assistance with the specification and product selection to meet the right level of security. This assistance would include combining components, leveraging existing network infrastructure, and emphasizing convenience features to create the perfect fit for medium security.
An example would be a facility manager looking to update the openings in a few remote locations that lack an existing wired infrastructure. Old mechanical locks can be replaced by electronic locks and cylinders at a very affordable price, and fulfill new security mandates for industries facing new regulations. This doable upgrade results in a higher level of key control, forensic audit data and boosted accountability. Finding a team to work together to ensure that your needs are properly assessed, products are benchmarked against that need, and, finally, configured and installed properly is paramount.
It would be interesting to hear from you on your experience in dealing with medium security needs and approaches you have taken in response.