For an organisation considering its security options, fob access systems are a worthwhile investment. Keeping buildings such as offices, warehouses, factories, and schools secure often requires an effective access control system.
To keep its staff, visitors, and premises secure, businesses use key fob door entry and card access systems to limit access to various areas of the site and track people’s whereabouts.
People often think access control only applies to the main entrance. However, there may still be a need to give members of staff working in different departments varying levels of access.
For example, those working in IT or with sensitive data may have complete access to server rooms, while those working in HR may not.
In a school, staff and pupils may have access to the building via the main door, but pupils are restricted from staff rooms and more.
There are a range of access control solutions offering different benefits depending on requirements and security objectives. Fobs and proximity cards are two of the most popular door access systems in use today.
When it comes to the different types of access control systems, there are many. Each of them carries a range of benefits.
For the building owner or manager, the security of the premises and property, and the safety of the staff and visitors is paramount. This article focuses on the advantages and disadvantages of fobs door entry proximity access cards plus briefly introducing other access management systems.
What are the different applications of fobs and door access cards?
In this section of the article we look at two of the application for fobs and door access cards:
- Physical access to building premises:
- Device access
Physical access to building premises:
For those new to the world of security this simply means an individual or vehicle accessing a building or site.
This includes but is not limited to:
- Visitors or
Access cards or fobs can also allow physical access to:
- Car parks
Access control systems provide far more than just physical access to a site or building.
In the next part of this article, we discuss device access.
Additional to physical access, proximity cards and fobs can be used to provide access to devices and equipment too.
This could include:
- Network printers – helping to monitor those who use too much paper, or print sensitive files or information
- Computer systems – ensuring the security of a businesses data
- Changing room lockers – fast slick access to and from your locker without the worry of forgetting and losing a physical key (fobs can be canceled and replaced)
- Rooms containing cash and high value items – helping to reduce theft
What are the benefits of fob door access systems and proximity cards?
Like with all forms of technology, fob and card access control systems have their advantages and disadvantages.
Card and fobs systems are easy to implement, manage and are also cost-effective.
In this part of the article we will discuss more of the advantages and disadvantages of this type of access control.
Benefits and advantages of fob or card access systems:
- Proximity cards and fobs can be used to collect data on time and attendance. This data can be used to spot those consistently late or taking unauthorised breaks. This can help a business manage its productivity
- These access control systems are a cost-effective solution to building security. If a physical key is lost, replacing them along with the locks becomes expensive over time
- They are simply a more modern convenient access solution for staff, visitors, and other users
- Fob access systems provide security data such as who is in the building, a location, or room. When considering health and safety, this provides valuable data in the event of an emergency. In the unfortunate event of property being stolen, this data can be used in evidence
- These systems can be integrated with other forms of security such as CCTV
- User management – when people leave the business, you can simply cancel their fob or card. There’s no need to change the locks if they were a keyholder, you just simply cancel the fob. This helps to prevent disgruntled ex-employees from letting themselves into the building and causing criminal damage
- Cost savings – many businesses can reduce staffing levels at reception by deploying a fob based system. You don’t need to have someone sat at a desk letting people in and out via an intercom system
Disadvantages of fob or card access control systems
When it comes to fob and card access systems, it has to be said, there are very few disadvantages.
You occasionally have employees moan about the £5 they need to pay to replace a lost fob, and some don’t like the fact they are tracked around the building.
However, from a security point of view, they are incredibly robust.
In extreme cases, fob systems can be hacked. However, so can the IT systems of many multinational corporations who have to manage data breaches and the threat of hackers.
Other access control options to card or fob
When it comes to securing access to a business, card and fob based systems are a fantastic solution.
In addition to fob and card door entry systems, there are other forms of access control.
- Video intercom
- Audio intercom
- Temperature checking systems
- Video Analytics (facial recognition)
- Biometric security
Video intercom systems are a smart, modern way of granting guests and visitors access to your premises.
From a security point of view they are highly effective as you get to see who’s at the front door before letting them in.
In addition to letting people in via the front door, audio intercom systems provide secure access control in and around sites, factories and warehouses.
Businesses are starting to replace their old audio intercom systems with video based alternatives as they cover both audio and visual.
Temperature screening systems
With the ongoing threat of COVID-19, thermal technology now allows for businesses and other organisations to screen their staff and visitors for a high temperature.
These systems can be highly effective in helping to protect against the spread of COVID among a workforce.
Video analytics are now becoming more and more popular. Although the technology is advanced, the application is simple.
If your face is recognised by the system, you are allowed in the building. Video analytics is a great way for stopping people from sharing fobs, and reduces the risk of a rogue employee stealing fobs providing access to secure areas of the site and committing crimes.
Biometric access control (fingerprints) is also an increasingly popular solution for managing time and attendance. Fingerprints offer a more secure authentication method compared to proximity cards or fobs. These systems are predominantly used with high security sites.
Card and key fob door entry systems – conclusion
When it comes to security, choosing the right access control solution can be a minefield. Particularly if you’re not a security professional.
Building managers, business owners, and those in charge of security are responsible for the safety of individuals and protecting the premises from a range of threats.
Whether you are looking to secure an office, warehouse, school, gym, construction site and more, access control systems play a pivotal role in making your buildings more secure.
In this article, we’ve addressed the advantages and disadvantages of one of the most widely used access control systems. To recap, they are:
- Collecting data on time and attendance to help manage productivity
- More cost-effective than traditional door entry systems
- Modern and convenient
- They provide location-based data – perfect for managing health and safety and emergency situations
- Integration with other forms of access control
- User management – easily add and remove users
- Cost savings – reduce reception overheads via fob access
Cards or fobs are cost-effective, provide audit trails and are convenient for users. The only downside is that in some instances, cards or fobs can be cloned.
However, the chances are minimal.
Are you currently at ways to improve the security of your business and its premises?
Are you looking at ways to improve time and attendance management?
Or maybe looking at cost-effective ways to improve security within your business?