What is Access Control

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What is Access Control

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Access Control: An Overview

What Is Access Control?

It is a system that prohibits unauthorized persons from entering certain places, usually for security and confidentiality purposes.

It can be used on both physical and information security. On the former, there is a restriction in entering buildings or any physical premises; while on the latter, there is a restriction in entering a website or database, and obtaining information through the use of computers.

The focus of this article will be on physical access control.

 The Evolution of Physical Security

Before technology rose to its peak level, people only used keys and locks to restrict others from entering their homes or buildings. However, thieves found creative ways to open the locks to the doors.  Security guards were then hired to ensure safety in these structures.

When technology boomed, electronic access control was invented to provide security and protection more effectively. This system requires credentials to allow access. Credentials are codes (passwords) or authorized persons’ physical attributes.

Biometrics is a type of security system that is widely used nowadays in various companies. It requires credential verification such as finger print scan, iris recognition, voice recognition, or retinal scan.

When correct credentials are provided, the entrance will be unlocked for a specific period of time and the entry will be recorded on the system’s database. When the credentials are not identified by the system, the attempted entry will also be recorded. The system also monitors if someone forces the door open or if the entrance has been open for too long.