Biometrics and Security – It’s all about Access Control

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Biometrics is the measurable features or characteristics of a human. These traits can be used to identify people for access control to a building or devices and anything in between. In today’s tech-savvy world we use biometrics every day and may not even realize it. There are many ways to measure and record a human’s biometric information for access control.

A lot of us now have smart phones. Both android and IOS came out with facial recognition to unlock the cell phone for use. That feature uses biometrics. Since most of us have different facial features this works fairly well in preventing others from using your cell phone. The software has been going through some refinements as people have found ways to spoof it. For example get a picture of the person then use that to unlock their phone. In this application the failing part is that the image used to set up facial recognition is 2 dimensional.  3 dimensional would be needed to add extra difficulty so spoofing would not nearly as easy with just a taking Polaroid picture.  Still it is amazing that you can now have access control set up on your own cell phone.

To secure a business the technology is now available to integrate access control with CCTV security cameras. Up until the 1990’s access control for most companies consisted of a security guard watching a TV monitor to verify an individual’s identification. Then that person got “buzzed” in. There are many places that still use that setup or something very similar to it. Sure it works and is easy to operate. However, it is archaic by today’s standard and if you are going for full automation that setup is not even close.

A standalone biometric controller can be utilized with a security camera Digital Video Recorder. Biometrics used in this application are typically for full automation while still logging everything in the access control authorization, so security audits can be done to verify the biometric scanner is functioning properly and only allowing individuals in and out that have been approved by the administrator.

An image of a Thumb print reader is the device used in verification of a person’s identity. The Key pad is used to program and initiate the log in procedure. At the top is the camera and at the bottom middle is the finger print scanner. The PIR sensor is on the lower right corner as you can see the or not see the sensor is hidden under the dark plastic.  This particular device can store up to 5 different prints from one person. When adding your user I would use both thumbs and pointer fingers. Just in case the user forgets what digit to use on which hand. The MAC1000SR has a built in camera and a PIR sensor or motion sensor.  Also there is a microphone built directly into the device. Our original intent is to use the microphone through phone systems using video phones so you can have two way communications with gate keeper and key master.

ACRS-MAC1000-SR

The MAC1000SR has a few different ways to activate recording as does your security DVR.  The main focus will be with the DVR as that device will be doing the recording. The DVR could be setup to record motion so when the camera picks up motion the DVR will start recording. There by allowing a recording of the person accessing the door. Another option is to use the alarm outputs on the MAC and connect them to the alarm inputs on DVR. That can tell the DVR to record when someone triggers the PIR sensor or when the user initiates the Biometric Check. The MAC does come with cables so you do not have to worry about acquiring a cable and figuring out how to make RJ59 connect to a circuit board.

Another option is to use the access card only or in conjunction with a finger print. When you use both finger print and access card that adds an additional layer of security. That way should a person lose or have their card stolen the card on its own is useless. The reader still needs a finger print to finish the authentication process to allow access. Two part authentication is as secure as it gets. The idea behind it is just like your own email account. You have a user name and a password without either you have no access. Every extra step you can implement adds another layer of protection. The great aspect of the technology is that even though extra layers of encryption and authentication are added the time it takes the reader to process the information is between one and two seconds.  That is amazing considering the amount of data processed, and it is faster than most people can pull their keys out of their pocket and turn the latch.

There are many real world applications for this technology in any business. In the military keeping the weapons accounted for one hundred percent of the time is mandatory, and easy with access control. In the police stations around the world from the holding cells to offices and more, this can make accountability a breeze. In businesses, allowing certain employees access to specific areas only such as keeping the sales people out of the warehouse or vice versa, access control is the way to go. Even something as simple as stopping customers from going into employee areas can be efficiently handled with these security system access controls.

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