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Access control is any mechanism or system that manages access through the authorization or revocation of rights to physical or logical assets within an organization.

Businessman entering safe code to unlock the door.

 

In the fields of physical security and information security, access control (AC) is the selective restriction of access to a place or other resource.[1] The act of accessing may mean consuming, entering, or using. Permission to access a resource is called authorization.

 

BENEFITS OF ACCESS CONTROL SYSTEM
Track and deter access throughout your organization
Assists in auditing of movement and time and attendance of staff
Restrict access to sensitive areas
Provide a safer working environment
Remotely administer and control access to multiple facilities through one interface.

Access control is a system which enables you to control authority of who has access to certain areas to your building. Within the field of physical security, an access control system in the physical structure of security is normally seen as the second layer.

Every business and organisation in the world has assets and information that require protection. Another key issue is the protection of business’ staff and property. A lock on a car door or a PIN on an ATM system are various forms of access control. The inconvenience and expense of changing locks if keys get lost means a waste of time and money. This can also create even more security risks as keys can be copied very easily.

Many buildings are secured by locks and keys which mean that doors are left unlocked for most of the day. This can lead to possible theft or crime and the cause of malicious damage, but with the use of an access control system, these theft possibilities can be restricted and will also provide a safer working environment.

You will never have to change a lock again when installing an access control system. It provides the most efficient way of securing your building and assets. The use of tokens, cards or fobs will enable a business to give access to staff through controlled doors. If a token, card or fob is lost, stolen, or not returned, and then these can all be barred therefore maintaining the level of security.

The access control system will automatically lock all the doors controlled by the system, once the system has been installed. Only people with a PIN or token will be able to enter through controlled doors within the access control system.

Flexible control over users’ access rights is a method of restricting access to staff that doesn’t require access to certain areas of the building. Also, access may be restricted by time, only allowing access to particular users at certain times of day or night. This is also useful for contractors as an expiry date can be set so that the fob will not work after a certain time period.

 

BIO-METRIC ACCESS CONTROL 

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The word Bio-Metric is made from two words of Greek language , Bio –meaning Life and Metric –meaning Measurement . So in simple terms , Bio-Metrics are the physical or behavioral  characteristic which can be measured to established the identification of a person . This method of identification is considered better than the traditional methods of having Card , Fobs, Password and PIN numbers as there are almost zero chance of lapses due to lost , stolen or mishandled authenticity & password .  Bio-metric recognitions are near to 100% exact and sensitive and almost impossible to copy.

Biometric system can be designed to be used as an identification system or authentican system .. Biometric recognition are divided into various types which includes Vein Pattern , Fingerprint , Hand Geometry , DNA , Voice Pattern , IRIS Pattern , Signature Dynamics and Face Detection .

Components of Biometric Access control –

  • Credentials
  • Reader or Keypad or Sensor
  • Locking Device
  • Door Position Switch
  • Request to Exit Device ( REX)
  • Controller
  • User Interface ( Software )

 Credential –In simple sentence , credential are the password for access to the facility or computer or any other thing whose access is open only for the person having that credential . For an access control , credential may be in form of Access Card , Fob , PIN , or Biometric Credentials like fingerprint , Hand Geometry , IRIS patter and Voice Etc . Credential is the “ thing “ physical or biometric which has to be presented to the system for the identification of the person and granting access .These any or two and more credential are presented to the reader /sensor.

Reader or Keypad or Sensor –. Reader as the name implies is the device which receive/read the credential provided by the an individual . The work of the reader is to receive the identification information and sent it to the controller for processing .For Example – proximity card reader whereby an access card is presented to within a few inches of the reader so that the reader can read the identification information from the access card

Locking Device –These are  electrified locks, electric strikes, or even electromagnetic devices; these are designed to hold a door closed until such time that the controller has authenticated the identification information presented via the credential and determined that the circumstances warrant authorization to access a door or gate.

Door Position Switch- This is the eye of the system which keeps it updated  about the  status of the door at all time  i.e. it is open or the closed . It keep the system apprised of the door status at real time . This is very important as without this the system can not know if an access control enabled door is wide opened intentionally or by mistake .

Request to Exist Device (REX)- The controller is the intelligence of the system. All access decisions are made by the controller. The controller firmware and database make every decision and remember every user. A well designed access system will distribute all intelligence throughout the controllers in the system such that the system does not rely on the user interface software for routine operation.

User Interface-The user interface is software that is used for human interaction with the access system. Software can include simple set up and reporting commands or very sophisticated graphical representations of a building with device icons, alarm indications, and even live video feeds. Regardless of the complexity of the software, its purpose is to allow people to input information, create authorization rules, and review accountability information about the system.

As in the access control system ( either Bio-Metric or Any Other Type )  it is only Credential Type and Sensor Type which changes , all other components remains the same , hence lets study about the different type of Bio-Metric Sensors used in Bio-Metric Access Control System.

 Bio-metric Sensor

A bio-metric sensor is a transducer that changes a bio-metric treat of a person into an electrical signal. Bio-metric treats mainly include bio-metric fingerprint reader, iris, face, voice, etc. Generally the sensor reads or measures light, temperature, speed, electrical capacity and other types of energies.Different technologies can be applied to get this conversation using sophisticated combinations, networks of sensors and digital cameras. Every bio-metric device requires one type of sensor. The bio-metrics applications mainly includes: used in a high definition camera for facial recognition or in a microphone for voice capture.Some bio-metrics are specially designed to scan the vein patterns under your skin. Bio-metric sensors are an essential feature of identity technology.

 Types of Bio-metric Sensor

Bio-metric Sensors can be classified into two types viz.Physiological Bio-Metric Sensors and Behavioral Bio-metric Sensors . As the name implies face recognition , fingerprint recognition , hand geometry , iris recognition DNA etc comes into Physiological Bio-Metric and keystroke , signature and voice recognition comes into Behavioral Bio-Metric . Now lets read about each of them in detail.

 Fingerprint Recognition

Fingerprint Recognition includes taking a fingerprint image of a person and records its features like arches, whorls, and loops along with the outlines of edges, minutiae and furrows. Matching of the Fingerprint can be attained in three ways, such as minutiae, correlation and ridge

  • Minutiae based fingerprint matching stores a plane includes a set of points and the set of points are corresponding in the template and the i/p minutiae.
  • Correlation based fingerprint matching overlays two fingerprint images and association between equivalent pixels is calculated.
  • Ridge feature based fingerprint matching is an innovative method that captures ridges, as minutiae based fingerprint capturing of the fingerprint images is difficult in low quality.

 

At present  CMOS image sensor or CCD image sensor method are used to capture the fingerprints ; solid state sensors work on the principle of transducer technology using thermal, capacitive, piezoelectric sensors or electric field ; or ultrasound sensors work on echography in which the sensor sends acoustic signals through the transmitter near the finger and captures the signals in the receiver. Scanning of the fingerprint is very stable and also reliable.Today, thumbprint and fingerprint recognition technologies are a key feature for many security systems. These systems are among the most commonly used because of their ease of installation and their proven effectiveness for access control.

Face Recognition

Face recognition system is another type of biometric application which can identify or verify a person from a digital image by comparing and analyzing different patterns. These biometric systems are used in security systems. Present facial recognition systems work with face prints and these systems can recognize 80 nodal points on a human face. Nodal points are nothing but end points used to measure variables on a person’s face, which includes the length and width of the nose, cheekbone shape and the eye socket depth.

 

Face recognition systems work by capturing data for the nodal points on a digital image of a person’s face and resulting data can be stored as a face print. When the conditions are favorable, these systems use a face prints to identify accurately. Currently, these systems focus on smart phone applications which include personal marketing, social networking and image tagging purposes. Social sites like FB use software for face recognition to tag the users in photographs. This software also increases marketing personalization. For instance, billboards have been designed with integrated software that recognizes the ethnicity, gender and estimated age of onlookers to deliver targeted marketing.

Iris Recognition

Iris recognition technologies use the unique patterns found in the human eye(single patterns in the region of ring shaped surrounded the pupil of the eye ) to provide accurate identification . Generally, the iris has a blue, brown, gray or green color with difficult patterns which are noticeable upon close inspection. This can provide you with detailed information about the movements and access points used by various individuals in your office ( of the employees etc whose date is feed) , allowing you to maintain a record of activities throughout your facilities.

 Voice Recognition

Voice recognition is again another technology which is used to produce speech patterns by combining behavioral and physiological factors that can be captured by processing the speech technology.The sensor usages nasal tone, fundamental frequency, inflection, and cadence for authentication . Depending on the type of authentication domain , voice recognition can be classified into different categories , such as a fixed text method, in the text dependent method, the text independent method and conversational technique.

Voice Recognition eliminates the need of badge and passwords in access control arena . One drawback with voice recognition access control is that it generates false rejection sometime .

Signature Recognition

Signature recognition is a  biometric method used to analyze and measure the physical activity of signing like the pressure applied, stroke order and the speed. Some biometrics are used to compare visual images of signatures. There are two way by which we can do signature verification – 1-Static , 2-Dynamic

In static mode, consumers write their signature on paper, digitize it through a camera or an optical scanner. This system identifies the signature examining its shape.

In dynamic mode, consumers write their signature in a tablet which is digitized, that obtains the signature in real time. Another option is the gaining by means of stylus-operated PDAs. Some biometrics also operate with smart-phones with a capacitive screen, where consumers can sign using a pen or a finger. This type of recognition is also known as “on-line”.

Vascular Recognition

For the very high security areas, we can rely on vascular biometrics , the recognition of which can be done at the time of fingerprint recognition . When require , it can be inbuilt with finger recognition sensor and hence gives two layer of authentication before access , fingerprint & vascular .  These systems use near-infrared light to scan the pattern of veins in the fingers. This can provide positive confirmation of identity for access purposes and to track movements within your facility.

 

Brands Manufacturing Access Controls 

Hikvision , Dahua , CP Plus , Axis , Panasonic , Godrej , Bosch , Zicom , Samsung , Eureka Forbes, eSSL , etc .