A Simple Guide to Modern Locksmith and Access Control Systems

Lockmart on 14 August 2015

Discover the benefits of modern Access Control Systems for your home or business

Access Control, as the name suggests, is a physical system that either permits or restricts user access to a certain location, area or resources. An Access Control System controls the access points, or pathways, across a location, such as a home or commercial premises. Pathways can include normal building entries and exits as well as emergency exits, secondary doors stores and toilets.

There are many reasons for implementing an Access Control solution. The primary purpose is as a security measure, but Access Control can also monitor use, control user flow and improve overall site safety.

At Lockmart, we have been working with Melbourne homes and businesses to develop customised access control systems for over 50 years. 

The benefits of a customised Access Control Solution include:

Improve Security and Safety. Site security is the biggest reason for implementing an Access Control system. A sound solution will ensure that only authorised persons can access certain areas at certain times, which will protect the site, people and property from damage or theft. Authorisation can ensure that access to a dangerous area is restricted to certain people or limit the use of secondary pathway access points.

Better Site Management. Modern developments in Access Control allows systems to monitor the use of pathways, as well as log activity associated with a particular person, and at what times. A well-designed system can assist the management of sites and assets through the use of user permissions and multi-factor authentication.

Convenience. Another primary benefit of Access Control is enjoying the convenience of a smart, integrated system. Keyless entry makes access to pathways seamless, and user entry codes or key cards can be managed in real-time.

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For more information about Access Control Systems and modern locksmith services, call the team at Lockmart on 1300 594 903.

Components of an Access Control System

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Permissions & Restrictions. An advanced Access Control System will allow the configuration of various permissions for certain users. This means that some users can only access certain pathways, and in some cases, these permissions can be customised according to the time of day.

Authorisation & Credentials. An ‘authorised person’ is a user who has been assigned specific credentials and a certain level of permission which will allow them access certain pathways at certain times. Authenticating Credentials and information can combine up to three factors:

  • Something the user knows. This could be a password, pass-phrase or PIN.
  • Something the user has. This is usually a physical key, smart card or a key fob.
  • Something the user is. This may include a fingerprint or retina scan.

Pathways. The 'Access Points' to a site or premises can be identified as 'Primary' or 'Secondary' Pathways:

  • Primary Pathway Access Points. These points are doors that are considered to be the standard entry and exit points of the premises.
  • Secondary Pathway Access Points. These points are doors that are not usually used to gain access to the site. These points may include Emergency Exit Doors or secondary entry doors to rooms.

Types of Access Control

Mechanical Solutions

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Mechanical solutions are a relatively simple form of Access Control. A simple lock, or combinations of locks, used at a residential home is one widespread example of Access Control.

These locks can usually be opened with a simple metal key, which can be easily cut and duplicated. Although these systems are simple, access is granted to anyone who possesses the key. This makes simple, one-factor mechanical solutions a weak Access Control Solution if the key is in possession by an unauthorised user.

A Restricted Master Key is a more advanced form of mechanical access control. These keys are cut in an intricate and unique way so that they can open multiple locks. Different versions of these keys can be cut so that individual permissions are effectively granted to the user. For example, a user with Key X can unlock doors A, B and C, while a user with Key Z can only unlock doors A and B.

Features Benefits Risks
  • Uses a physical key
  • Keys can be duplicated
  • Restricted Master Key systems can assign 'permissions' with certain keys
  • Simple, low maintenance solution
  • Easy to manage
  • Low cost
  • Lost keys pose a security risk

Electronic Solutions

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Electronic Access Control Solutions are sophisticated and modern methods of access control. These systems limit the use of physical keys in favour of electronic locking mechanisms that can be accessed with the assistance of an electronic key or user authentication.

In many simple instances, electronic access control systems use key fobs or cards as a replacement for traditional keys. Electronic solutions may also use other authenticating information such as passcodes or PINs entered into a keypad terminal, or advanced biometric scanners.

The range of technology available today makes electronic systems a highly customisable and flexible method of access control. Users and permissions can be easily managed and monitored, and security can be highly restricted with extra layers of authentication.

Features Benefits Risks
  • Uses electronic keys
  • Easy permissions and user managment
  • Multi-factor authentication options
  • Flexible & customisable
  • Easy site monitoring
  • High security options
  • Installation requires specialist locksmith knowledge and training

Applications of Access Control Systems

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Residential Security. A simple mechanical solution for residential homes could simultaneously improve the ease of access to a house and increase security with a single, master key. A master key system could also be configured for multiple homes, such as a holiday home.

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Small Business Security. A mechanical solution, such as a master key system, can be an easy way for a small business to access multiple pathways, such as the main entrance, rear entrance and office door, with a single key. Such a solution would be ideal for the management of bars, cafes and nightclubs.

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Enterprise Security. An electronic system could make the management of staff and visitors in a large office building easy and increase security. For example, controls programmed into the system could restrict access after hours for some users, and lost keys could be easily deleted from the registry.

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Worksite Control. A combined electronic and mechanical access control system could work as an effective solution to manage a large commercial or industrial worksite. Electronic access points can monitor and restrict access to unauthorised users to certain worksite areas while a mechanical solution can be used for secondary pathways and utility store rooms.

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Inventory Control. The access to sensitive assets and equipment can be highly controlled with an electronic solution. Two or three-factor authentication, such as key fob and keypad combination, can be implemented for high dangerous or sensitive materials. Ideal for medical, legal and financial applications.

Improve control and management with an Access Control System

At Lockmart, we have been working with Melbourne homes and businesses to develop customised access control systems for over 50 years. Our modern locksmith solutions vary in complexity, level of customisation and cost. From simple keys and keypads to biometric identification systems, we can design a solution to match your security needs.

Call the locksmith team at Lockmart on 1300 594 903 today to get a free, no-obligation consultation with an access control expert.