What is an access control system?
Access control systems (ACS) are the devices that are developed to restrict the accessibility of specific information or places. Access Control System identifies, validates, and permits access to a person to enter the building, thereby providing complete security with the system.
Unlike the traditional method of lock and key, the access control system provides a modern solution to security and access problems. With increasing development in technology, there is higher demand and use of this kind of security system in the technological and corporate world.
Internet Protocol (IP) based access control is advanced and multiplying in the area of security because of its simple and useful features. There are other access control systems like smartphone-based access control, physical access control, etc. IP-based access control system has proven to be effective in access management in various IT-based business as a result of extensive availability of internet connections.
For example, Smart INTEGRA is an all-in-one security panel comprising access Control, attendance, intrusion, detection, fire detection, and CCTV. It is specially designed for multi-location retail and offices for better-centralized control through CMS at HO. There is a wide range of products offered by Smart Identification Solutions like SmartSLIM, SmartRID-SLIK, SmartSWING and smartATM to provide solutions for the problem of security.
Why migrate to an IP-based access control system?
The IP-based access control system has many added advantages over traditional access control systems. One of the major advantages of IP-based access control system is its ease of use for business to continue, expand, and modify their physical access control infrastructure. It also allows users to benefit from modern ACS characteristics like effective multiple site management and Power over Ethernet (PoE) technology and accomplish significant cost savings in their Total Cost of Ownership (TOC).
For example, an IP-based SmartFACE (8 Inch), an intelligent biometric face recognition system with temperature detection benefits, can prove advantageous looking at current scenarios worldwide. Similarly, SmartTRACK (Mobile App) is a solution for attendance systems & employee location tracking. It combines precise real-time GPS positioning and sales reporting updates, works status submission, and the manager can approve or reject leave applications.
Goals for a Migration
Once the organization has decided to move from a traditional access control system to an IP-based ACS, the following goals are required to be considered to understand which solution provider can best for your organization:
- To consider a system with a long-life span.
- An organization can consolidate its ACS assets with an IP-based system into a single security platform. Subsequently, reducing the costs of various other platforms. Merging assets can expand system integration, adaptability, performance, consistency, security, and versatility.
- Before physical migration, the system integrator should complete as much work parallel to avoid redundant and expensive downtime and accomplish a smooth ACS migration.
- An organization must consider the effect of downtime on system users when migrating a current system.
- An organization needs to examine the hardware and software features currently being used in their traditional ACS and make certain that these features will also be accessible in the new system.
Steps in the Migration Process
The steps in the migration process initially involve the user working with a systems integrator and with manufacturers and solutions providers to create a quote and a migration strategy. Below are the steps are taken in the migration process:
1. Get the facts
The initial step for the systems integrator is to place the setup of the present ACS onto a paper that covers details like the location of electrical and telecom closets, electric wiring, and the kind of power presently in place. Also, an entire list of hardware elements, networking apparatus, and servers currently being operated in the system and recent software that will be essential in the new system.
2. Recognize the requirements of the new system
The system integrator should understand the requirements of the new IP ACS to develop an effective migration plan. Hardware components, software components, network configuration, wiring, and power are amongst the crucial requirements for designing the framework of the new system.
3. Site survey
The building tour with the team is necessary to re-check if anything is left out concerning the present system and to make sure that new system requirements are understood. The site survey aims to form a distinct picture of the current architecture and outline of the current system and wiring, confirm where the device is centralized, and calculate the distances between access control panels, readers, and power sources.
4. Determine components that can be re-used
The requirement of the essential elements that can be re-used in the new systems like the hardware, networking, power, cabling and software components can be decided by forming a complete picture of the organization’s current ACS and the requirements for the new system.
5. Testing current components
To verify compatibility, the system integrators are then required to test the current systems that can be reworked, like cards, interface modules, controllers, etc.
6. Define new equipment requirements
The system integrators should determine the new network and access control requirements of the IP-based ACS when they have enough knowledge of what can be re-used from the current ACS and what is mandatory in the new system.
7. Understand the current databases and data
The next step is to import current cardholder and testimonial data into the new IP ACS with the help of technical specialists or field engineers into a standard file format, like CSV or Microsoft Excel file. Additionally, the new system should also offer the facility to import data from a standard file format. It is better to estimate the type and form of the exported data before starting the process.
8. Plan the migration
The system integrator should cautiously plan the hardware migration and confirm that both software and hardware installation are attained in parallel. Furthermore, network configuration and custom development must be added in the migration plan regardless of constructing a bridge to any third-party software or developing tailored software. Finally, the systems integrator must create a comprehensive transition plan and activate the components in the new system.
9. Test the new IP system
The new IP-based ACS is pre-staged along with the present system. The system integrator should commence an entire re-checking of the new IP system before implementing and activating the migration. All designs should be evaluated before cutover.
10. Execute the migration and acceptance testing
The systems integrator and user can follow the schedule created as part of the migration plan and changeover from the old to the new ACS. The manufacturers should be put on for backup if any issue is experienced with the new ACS system. Lastly, the team should undergo the acceptance test proposal to validate all the steps taken in the migration process were performed appropriately and that all of the apparatus in the system is functioning correctly.
Security is a vital responsibility that requires that everything is taken care of in this dynamic environment. The security segment is evolving with the establishment of advanced technology. IP-based access control systems have become imperative for access control systems with their efficacy and various advantageous characteristics.