As a business owner, you need to keep your business secure during and after working hours. One tool you can use to keep your business as secure as possible is an access control system. An access control system is a system used to oversee who has rights to access physical and logical resources within a company. An access control system can provide you with greater control over who can enter your building and when they are able to enter your building. It can also allow you the power to remotely monitor access to your business.
The Four Major Types of Access Control Systems
Discretionary Access Control
There are four kinds of access control systems: discretionary, mandatory, role-based and rule-based. Discretionary access control delegates all the authority-granting to the owner. The owner assumes all responsibility for who can enter the building and who can enter specific areas within the building. An access control list is a popular example of this type of access control system.
Mandatory Access Control (MAC)
In the mandatory access control model, the owner doesn’t have the ultimate authority of who gets access and who doesn’t. This type of system is often used in larger organisations and places that handle a lot of classified data like hospitals, places where dangers substances are stored and military facilities where one person would not be responsible for assigning all permissions for everyone within the building. Users are categorised and given a label that gives them access to specific buildings and specific locations within these buildings. The assignment of access labels requires complex planning for this type of access control system, and this model requires a lot of monitoring (to update for newly active and inactive users) to make sure it runs properly.
Role-Based Access Control (RBAC)
If it pertains to you, then you are given access to it. This is how role-based access control works in our homes and businesses. Role-based access control (also known as non-discretionary access control) gives access to people based on if the access helps them accomplish their role in the business.
Rule-Based Access Control (RBAC)
Rule-based access control grants access to individuals based on whether a rule (or combination of rules) are present. The specifics of the rule(s) will determine whether access is granted or denied. Unlike role-based access control, access is determined by the verification of applicable rules. Therefore, a person with a specific role may be granted access to a unit when the applicable rules grants access based on the present conditions. But, if the conditions are not met, that same person could no longer have access—even if it’s a day later. Thus, you can expect businesses to use rule-based access control when they have scenarios where people may need access only during certain times of the day.
Benefits of Access Control Systems
- More Efficient Regulation of Business Access
You can control who has access to your external and internal doors, and you can monitor what timeframes they have access. Your access control system can be established to determine which employees have entrance to certain doors to prevent unauthorised entry. Access can also be granted for temporary time periods. For instance, one employee may have access on certain days of the week, and some employees may only have access during a specific number of weeks (or for a specific season of the year).
Access control systems monitor and manage employee access to prevent unauthorised access after work hours and to prevent unauthorised access in locations where employees do not need access.
- Regulated Traffic Flow in Your Buildings
Access control systems on your doors give businesses more control over who goes in and out of your building. It also allows you to monitor the movements of your employees throughout your building.
Research has shown that campuses and apartment buildings in Ireland are better able to regulate the flow of traffic on their premises by having keycards. Cards can be deactivated when needed, and cards can be deactivated and replaced with a new card without the worry of having keys floating around that give access to people who should not have it.
- Improves Remote Access Management
When you outsource services and have outside people working for your business, these outsourced members may need to have access to your business. Users authorised to grant access can give these people access without others being aware. Security is maintained by not having to give keys out to people who are not a part of the staff
- Enforcing Equipment Safety
Valuable assets on site are protected when businesses use access control. If you have expensive equipment on site, access control restricts who’s able to have access to it. Places with sensitive equipment will only be accessible to people who have the right expertise to be around it.
Having various access control locations in your business deters trespassers because it makes it more difficult to burglarise places that have several access control points.
Ways to Set Up Your Access Control System
Access control systems allow regulated accessibility to businesses and various locations within a business. Key business personnel can manage the system and keep record of all activity in public and restricted areas. Here are two ways businesses can set up their access control system:
A server-based system allows a business to keep record of all entries and exits on an onsite server or a server in a remote location. Only a user with granted access will be able to retrieve the data from the server.
For those businesses that would love to be able to retrieve their server data regardless of where they are located, the browser-based system is the most ideal.
Browser-based access is also known as cloud access control. Businesses that use this type of access control system can retrieve information about the business from any location where there is internet access. Most companies that use this type of server often have a subscription with a company that manages the server in a remote location.