Biometric Access Control – Fast, Secure, Easy to Use, and Excellent ROI

Most businesses out there are all too aware of the very important role an access control system can play for ensuring their security of their day-to-day operations and indeed, the majority already successfully use such systems.

While smart card or token-based access control systems have been around for quite some time, biometric solutions have become increasingly popular over the past few years, as they make the authentication process much more secure, easier and faster, while also delivering a very good ROI.

When using a biometric access control system, you simply can’t forge or forget your means of access because individuals are identified according to their distinctive personal traits and characteristics.

Biometric Access Control Systems – Key Advantages

Added Security

Biometric systems identify each individual according to their distinctive physical traits and characteristics. Employers have a plethora of characteristics to choose from in order to use as an employee’s key – in fact, fingerprints, palm prints, their DNA, voice and even their face can be used as a key. Another major advantage is that biometric characteristics are very difficult to replicate or steal; hence they will be a long term security solution for your company.

Superior Accuracy

Biometric Access Control Readers can deliver a significantly higher level of accuracy compared to the more traditional solutions, such as passwords, access cards or personal identification numbers (PIN). This is because the biological characteristics used by biometric technology cannot be easily replicated, meaning that only authorized persons will be granted access at any given time.

Audit Trail

Biometric access control systems offer companies the benefit of an easily accessible audit trail, because a particular person can be immediately linked to a particular action or an event. This feature is particularly useful in the unfortunate case of a security breach, because company management will be able to easily and rapidly identify the responsible parties.

User-Friendly and Time Saving

Modern biometric access control systems are both very easy to use and safe. They are also very quick, since a person’s characteristics can be read and compared against an existing database in a matter of seconds.

Both the hardware and the associated software are very easy to use, and the use of this technology can help firms increase their overall productivity and reduce costs by eliminating fraud and waste.

Enhanced Versatility and Scalability

Companies have multiple types of biometric access control systems and authentication methods to choose from nowadays, including: fingerprint, facial, palm, iris or voice. These systems can be combined and customized to be used at security checkpoints installed at entrances, exits, doorways, and more.

Besides restricting access to specific zones, biometric readers can also be used for attendance recording purposes. Adding extra components to the system is also easy, so companies can easily customize their systems based on their specific needs and requirements.

Very Good ROI (Return on Investment)

Biometric access control solutions can deliver an excellent return on investment (ROI), because, besides enforcing security, they can also be used to eliminate time theft via “buddy punching,” lower payroll costs, enable the correct and highly accurate calculation of work hours, and cut workforce management time.

The Role of Paper Shredding in the Digital Era

Advances in modern technology have seen a relentless movement towards a paperless world. As a business manager, you are now tasked with ensuring the safety of your digital records as opposed to physical documents. However, the relevance of paperwork cannot instantly be wiped off in organizations’ operations. Laxity in securing these can devastate your organization.

It is important even as you adopt digital storage to ensure you have an effective document management strategy. Paper Shredding will without doubt play a big role in your overall plan. While the modern shredder dates back to the early 20th Century, it still plays an important role in your day to day operations.

Below are some roles the paper shredding machine still plays:

Preventing Identity Theft

Recent reports indicate that over 15 million consumers in the U.S alone lost over $16 billion due to identity fraud. By destroying all information trail in your organization, you not only protect your customers but the organization as well. Items such as discarded mail and old files may contain details that could be used to the detriment of your firm.

Avoiding Legal Trouble

Many companies have fallen foul of the law because they retained clients’ information against their wishes. In some cases, such details fell into the wrong hands leading to debilitating lawsuits that could have been avoided through paper Shredding.

Protecting Your Reputation

However strong your brand seems at the moment, things can change in an instant. Whether the data breach is through a criminal act or an accident, the damage this will do to your company might be irreparable. To avoid this, make sure you hire a professional shredder in your city for efficient shredding. Any hint of an information breach will frighten your loyal customers while turning away prospective leads.

Sustainability

When you use a secure and effective document management program, it becomes easier to recycle this waste. This is also in accordance with laws in different states. In essence, you will make it easier for recyclers.

Peace of Mind

If you are constantly worried about the growing volumes of documents in your business, it is time to act. Whether you are converting to a digital platform or you consider the information contained to be outdated, always take precautions to shred the waste. You will enjoy peace of mind and focus more on your core business.

Even in this digital era, shredding is important in saving space and protecting your business’ financial secrets from the competition. Make sure you have a solid document management strategy that incorporates professional input by an experienced company.

Security Animals – More Than Just Dogs

After retiring law enforcement I started a private investigations and physical security consulting business in my home of Portland, Oregon. The security consulting portion of my business is varied and usually involves assessing security vulnerabilities, reviewing or developing security procedures, recommending specific security improvements, and providing security training.

Most of my clients are small to medium businesses but I am sometimes hired by individuals. Many of these people live in semi-rural areas adjacent to cities. They are often retired or commute into the city during the work week and tend to their “hobby farms” in the evenings and weekends. Typically their property has a barn of some sort, a few outbuildings, some farm machinery, and often has a couple horses, some chickens, and maybe a goat or two.

Security for these semi-rural areas is a growing concern. According to the FBI overall urban crime has been steadily decreasing nationwide but rural crime – especially property crime, is increasing. Trespassing, theft and burglary are major concerns for rural property owners and residents as sometimes crooks view these rural isolated areas as easy marks. These semi-rural areas also sometimes attract drug users who are looking for secluded spots to do their drugs and other assorted crooks.

The truth is, because of their relative isolation and the fact that many rural residents have not traditionally given much thought to security, many of these rural areas are easy marks for crooks. Fortunately, there are some basic and relatively inexpensive things residents and rural property owners can do to make themselves and their property more secure.

Practical Security Measures

After conducting a comprehensive security risk assessment I often recommend that rural property owners take steps to limit the number of roads and foot paths into the property. External lighting around susceptible areas is also a good idea with blue light often being more effective than regular white light illumination.

With the evolution of security technology, effective alarm systems and GPS are becoming more cost effective. I often recommend perimeter alarms that can detect intruders at the earliest point of trespass. GPS devices hidden inside high-value property like tractors, trailers, and all terrain vehicles are also a good idea. While this may not prevent theft, it will greatly help in recovery of stolen property and maybe even aid in the apprehension of the perpetrators.

Animals for Security

In ancient times animals of almost every stripe have been used to help protect persons and property. Big cats, elephants, alligators, and even venomous snakes have been used to protect and secure property!

We all know about guard dogs. Throughout the world dogs are commonly used for security purposes. But have you heard of guard monkeys? Not many people in the United States keep monkeys but in India authorities used Langur monkeys to help secure the 2010 Commonwealth Games. These monkeys have aggressive personalities but they have excellent eyesight and are highly trainable. And, in recent times the U.S. Army even reportedly used rats to sniff out bombs!

Effective Security Can Sometimes be Very Basic

Sometimes I get real basic. On one occasion, as part of an overall security strategy, I recommended that the property owners buy a flock of geese. Yes, you read that right! They already had some chickens running around so adding a few geese would not be a big issue with feed or housing. And, a small gaggle of geese serves as a very effective “early-warning system.”

For a security consultant in today’s modern high-tech world to recommend geese as an early warning system might seem a little odd, but in a rural or semi-rural environment it makes simple and practical sense. Geese, like Swans, are very territorial and since ancient Roman times have been used for “watch guards.” They have an acute sense of smell and eyes that seem to see just about everything.

When anything – man or beast, enters their space they can get quite aggressive. They make a lot of noise and have been known to “attack” anything that enters “their space.” Simply stated, intruders do not like noise and commotion and will often flee when detected. If an intruder does not flee, the honking and commotion of a gaggle of agitated geese can alert a home owner who can then take immediate steps to protect themselves and repel the intruder (i.e., arm themselves, make sure house doors are all locked, turn on lights, etc.).

All physical security measures should be practical and cost effective

When deploying physical security measures there should be a balance of the probability of criminal activity against the cost to protect a certain target. For example, it makes no practical sense to spend a million dollars on a security system that protects something valued at a mere $50,000.

Layered security (also sometimes referred to as “concentric rings of security”) is a well established security strategy. Its basic premise is that before an intruder can reach a target, the intruder must overcome multiple layers of security (i.e., gates, locked doors, illuminated areas, alarm systems, and yes… even flocks of geese). Even in today’s modern high-tech world, low-tech security strategies augmented with high-tech, can often be an economical and effective way to protect persons and property. And, YES, animals like geese can sometimes be an important part of an overall security strategy.