Door entry systems cover a wide range of access control systems and, over the past few years, the advances in technology have made them far more sophisticated and much cheaper than they once were.
Developments in Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and smartphone technology, as well as the increased sophistication of detection devices such as biometric readers, have opened up the world of door entry.
Access control systems are no longer the preserve of wealthy businesses; the cost and convenience of wireless door entry controls have made them widely available for domestic home users too.
All you need today is a smartphone and a high-quality door entry system installed by a professional engineer: you may never need a door key again.
The basics are simple enough. Access control systems are designed to allow authorised users safe and secure access to various parts of a building while keeping unwanted visitors or intruders out of restricted areas.
Devices to accomplish this can range from electronic key fobs that make a single door secure, to systems that can extend to multiple buildings within an office or factory complex.
It is wise to plan your door entry system ahead of installation. An access control system can be used for much more than keeping unauthorised persons out; it can be used to track where and when people come and go; how long people spend in particular areas; when pre-set entry numbers have been reached and so on.
One of the first things to consider is how secure the door entry system needs to be. A basic system could be just a keypad and swipe card, but high-security networks can include all kinds of identity checks, even voice recognition, fingerprint or eye retina checks.
Another planning consideration is the type and extent of the network you plan to connect to your access control system – CCTV and monitored alarms are just two examples.
When you have determined the primary function of the scheme and what connections you intend you will need to think about the areas that you wish to secure, most notably the number of doors that will have restricted access.
A small system could mean a simple electronic keypad door lock, but if you plan something more elaborate, choose one that gives scope for natural expansion at a later date.
Once you have determined the number of security doors required you will need to collect information on each access point, the type of door, the lock mechanism and the access control system that will operate it.
Not every door needs an electronic security system. People who have electronic access to a secure area may then be free to use ordinary keys for doors used inside the area.
There are many issues to consider when designing larger-scale door entry systems, and they will include any or all of the following:
A clear distinction must be made here between free areas and controlled exits. By law, access control systems must be configured to allow people to exit during a power cut and people should be able to exit freely in the event of a fire.
There are a myriad of secure door entry authorisation devices on the market and ways in which to operate them. Just a few examples are key fobs, proximity readers, key switches, keypads and biometric readers.
Stand-alone locks are single door access control systems that are easily installed and operational in minutes, although they are not connected to a wider network. They are usually operated by a keypad or swipe card.
Proximity readers have gained significant popularity in recent years. Cards can trigger door opening from some distance away. They are also cheap, reliable and lost cards can be deactivated and replaced by new ones.
Key switches are useful for networks where people movement needs to be audited. A physical key can be used to activate the lock, but data can be stored on the use of the key.
Biometric systems have become increasingly sophisticated and more reliable in recent years. Physical characteristics of the authorised users (fingerprint, handprint, even eye colour) can be logged into the system and used to allow or restrict access.
Other door entry systems can allow the user to specify the times when doors lock and unlock, check the usage of the scheme and produce detailed reports, create blueprint layouts to even change permissions on different doors at the touch of a smartphone screen.
No matter what system is used, there must be a way to get out in an emergency. Examples of free pass exits include push-to-exit buttons or bars, motion detectors and break-glass modules. Secure systems often include a battery back-up in the event of a power failure.
Business users should take the time to choose an expert to design, install and maintain a door entry security system. Crown Securities (UK) is big enough to offer the best products yet small enough to respond to the individual needs of every customer.
Experts at Crown Securities can walk you through the design process to ensure the perfect security solution for your needs, and at a price you can afford.
Arriving at an accurate estimate of price is always tricky as much depends on the individual requirements and the components used, but you can be assured that our estimates and advice come free of charge.
For help on design, installation and maintenance of security door entry systems to your home or business premises call for free on 0800 019 1131 anytime.