Why Use Integrated Security Systems and Access Control?

Security is an ever-growing concern for businesses across all industries. And, keeping your staff, customers, and equipment safe is a top priority for many business owners. While many in the past have relied on lock-and-key access systems, integrated security systems are making it easier to protect their assets. They can do this without compromising on convenience for their employees and visitors.  

Unlike regular keys, access control systems rely on tag, RFID, card access, or biometric access such as fingerprints, facial recognition, or retina scans.

Access control systems can improve staff punctuality and reduce operational costs. They can also prevent theft or vandalism, and make your property more secure, or even lock down dangerous machinery.

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Benefits of Access Control for Your Business

1. Theft Prevention

Whether or not your business has anything particularly valuable on-site, the possibility of a break-in is a real one. Access control prevents access to your property, protecting equipment and staff in the case of a break-in. In case something is stolen, access control systems show you which access point was breached. This gives you the ability to review related surveillance footage.

2. Save Energy and Money

You can integrate access control systems with other systems in the building. This includes the heating or lighting systems. Thus, you can switch off unnecessary systems if the access control system shows that no one is in a certain section of the building. 

3. Encourage Staff Punctuality 

Though every business owner would like to believe that their staff are not wasting their time, access control systems can provide an indisputable record of exactly when employees are arriving at or leaving work.

4. Restrict Access to Specific Locations

With access control systems, businesses can give access to certain parts of the building only to certain employees. This is especially helpful when dealing with sensitive information such as HR documents

5. Simplify Employee Turnover

In high attrition businesses or college campuses, it is simple to remove access from one specific individual without having to replace the locks and issue new keys to everyone.

The most important benefit of access control systems is that they are customizable for your business. A customized access control solution allows you to choose which areas of the building certain employees can or cannot access. You can base this on several metrics, such as clearance levels or time-based schedules. Ideal for multi-shift businesses or businesses with sensitive data, these systems give you more control.

Access control systems also provide automatic, indisputable records of who was in your building and when. Should proof of access be necessary for an investigation, these records could prove invaluable. 

Within an integrated security system that includes video surveillance, these records show whether an access control token is misused or stolen. 

The Role of Access Control in Integrated Security Systems

Integrated security systems are the future of security – combining multiple security systems into one solution for improved ease. These solutions can include video surveillance, alarm systems, uniformed guards and access control, to name a few. 

Integrated security systems allow you to control all systems from one console. You can evaluate information from all systems at the same time, which can have many benefits and applications, such as:

  • Retrieving historical video based on token information
  • Beginning a video recording when a blacklisted or stolen token attempts access
  • Generation of an alarm when a stolen or blacklisted token attempts access
  • Using video object counting, you can detect tailgating
  • Tracking visitors via video-based on token usage


Choosing Between Access Control Companies

With so many options on the market, choosing between access control companies shouldn’t be a quick decision. It should depend on your security needs, your budget, and what your aims are. When choosing between access control companies, the following should happen:

  1. Establish your business’ security needs: conduct a security review to determine what level of security you require – presently and in the future. Though this can be done in-house, most experts suggest outsourcing this to a third-party who has some industry knowledge and who can make recommendations you may not have thought of. Some things to take into account include entrance and exit locations, the number of people who access the building on a day to day basis, operation hours, and any potential vulnerabilities. 
  2. Establish the best type of installation for your business: For small companies with minimal security needs, a DIY system might suffice, but most commercial business owners, a professional installation which offers integration with other security systems, system testing and maintenance is preferable
  3. Choose the best type of access control system for your business: not every access control system is created equal, and which system your business needs depends on your aims and security needs. What type of access tokens your business needs, or which type of access – discretionary, mandatory, or rule-based – should all be specific to your business.

All Campus Security will work with you to decide which type of access control system is best for you, depending on the requirements of your business and your budget. Qualified security professionals will also ensure that access control installation occurs with as little disruption as possible to your staff and visitors.

A One-Size-Fits-All Approach Could Harm Your Business Security

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If you’ve heard the term “one size fits all”, then you have most likely met some eager salesmen. It’s an attractive thought, especially if you’re trying to lower your costs. The fact is, you’re better off looking at business security and surveillance from a more objective standpoint. 

Let’s face it, no matter how big or small your business is; it needs security. Regardless of which industry you’re in, every business starts and runs on capital. Whether you see it in the value of merchandise you own, the products you produce, the information you harbor, or actual money. The chances are there will be someone who is willing to try to steal it away from you. Because of this, you have to make sure you are properly protected. 

According to The State of Cybersecurity in Small and Medium-Sized Businesses, “61% of employees experienced some type of cyber attack in 2017. 54% of those data breaches involved customer and employee information. These attacks cost organizations an average of $1,027,053 each year, due to damage or theft.”

Sadly, many businesses do go about it the wrong way. They buy into the myth and then try to buy a standard “good for anything” security system. This could actually be putting them at risk instead of providing protection. So instead of buying these systems, businesses should rather be looking into custom systems and how they would benefit them better in the long run. 

One Size Business Security Does Not Necessarily Fit All

At the end of the day, every business is different and what’s right for one, may not be the best fit for another. There are numerous factors that go into what kind of security an establishment actually needs, and you should always start by assessing what your basic needs are before purchasing a  security solution. 

Businesses Have Unique Spending Budgets 

Because different industries produce different cash flows, businesses have different budgets. For example, a local coffee shop will not be able to afford the same costs a private hospital could cover, also because of their vastly different security levels (patient records, medical equipment, and medications vs the day’s takings) there will be a vast price difference in the needed security installations.   

Different Sized Businesses Have Different Needs

The size of your business is a major factor in security plans. In most large businesses, it’s best to invest in an access control system, especially if you have a workforce of over 500 employees. These systems monitor and track large flows of traffic in and out of a building. However, if your business is smaller (closer to 20 employees or less) this system could actually work against you, because of the familiarity and involvement you have with your company. In this case, an IP surveillance system would be more appropriate.  

Businesses Have Different Risks   

A good reason why a one-size-fits-all security solution can be ineffective is that businesses have different security risks and priorities. In retail, business owners tend to concentrate more on shoplifters and would need a video surveillance system in the store. In more corporate environments, the main goal is data protection, so a cybersecurity solution would be more beneficial. 


It’s always a good idea to look into customized business security solutions available on the market. 

Going That Extra Mile Could Be The Difference Your Business Security Needs 

Statistics show that visible security measures, such as alarm boxes or video surveillance cameras, reduce the chance of a burglary.

At the end of the day, being business security-wise and assertive will go a long way in protecting your assets and interests. But choosing the right security solution is the only sure-fire way to ensure professional piece of mind.

Improving School Access Control Systems

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Safety in schools has always been of paramount importance. But, with so many high-profile incidents of violence occuring at schools across the U.S. there is an increased urgency to improve school access control systems, especially in cases of emergency. 

According to The NPS Center for Homeland Defense and Security, there were 94 school shooting incidents in 2018. This is 60% more than the previous high of 59% in 2006. Add to this the fact that 749,000 nonfatal victimizations, including all theft and violent crime, were reported in 2016 between students aged 12 to 18. 

Many schools made strides in improving their security systems during the 2015 to 2016 school year. With 94% of high schools, 89% of middle schools and 73% of primary schools making use of video surveillance. Use of mandatory faculty and student photo-ID badges, school uniforms and random metal detector checks also increased.

According to IHS Markit data, 2017 saw school security system installation and sales of security equipment and services to the education sector climb to $2.7 billion

Of course, being prepared is the best defense a school has in case of an emergency. Ensuring the facility is secure by keeping unauthorized individuals out will greatly assist in keeping students safe. It protects them from outside dangers and providing a ready and controlled means of egress. 

Though there is no one-size-fits-all solution, there are a number of steps that you can take immediately, while the school maps out their long-term security plan.

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The security system a school uses should be able to do the following:

  • Monitor and control access to the building, using traditional locking solutions or, preferably, access control systems
  • Secure classrooms quickly from the inside, with specially designed lockset functions
  • Provide safe egress from the building

Where to Start

The fundamentals come first. Check all existing entrances and exists to establish that they close and latch easily, as well as whether existing hardware is operational. Remove door stops from outer doors, as they can prevent doors from closing quickly in an emergency.

Review key control too:

  • Does your facility make use of a key control and master key system?
  • What are the key control policies?
  • Are all keys present?
  • Is there a system in place to prevent the unauthorized distribution of keys?

Address any grey areas in your school’s key control system immediately. And, if the system is not properly managed, an electronic access control system is the ideal solution. 

Any long-term vision for the school’s security should also include the best locking scenario for all doors in the facility. Consider whether they need to remain locked throughout the day, with limited access only through a certain point, or remain unlocked except for emergency situations.

School Access Control Systems

Controlling access to facilities should be the first order of business for any school. Helpful for preventing theft and vandalism, access control in schools is important at the beginning and end of the day. However, possibly even more important during the entire school day. In the aftermath of many of the recent school shooting tragedies, one of the first questions asked is, “how did the shooter get in?”

Access control systems on perimeter doors can prevent entry, while on entryways to interior spaces such as classrooms and the library, they may create areas of refuge. 

Adding a greater level of security, electronic access control systems also provide monitoring functions. This allows you to keep track of anyone using a lock, as well as monitor the status of doors, ensuring security. Radio frequency fobs are also available, allowing remote lockdown through a panic button feature – the ideal solution for securing classrooms.

Benefits of School Access Control Systems

Whether through PINs, keycard access or tags, access control systems provide greater security in a facility by regulating access, which can have a multitude of benefits, especially in emergency situations.

Quickly and easily lock down a building

In an emergency situation, instead of teachers scrambling to manually lock doors while simultaneously keeping an eye on their students, all doors can lock with the click of a button. RF panic buttons can also lock individual classrooms, preventing access even if the correct credentials are presented from the outside. 

Take advantage of access cards

Rather than using traditional physical keys, access control allows you to make use of access cards, which can double as photo-ID. Access to individual access cards can also be remotely and immediately revoked, in the case of theft.

Integration with video surveillance

Ideally, all access control systems in schools should integrate with video surveillance, allowing for someone to keep an eye on any incidents which may occur. 

Useful data

Another major benefit of access control is the ability to see who was where, when. This can be useful for knowing exactly how a system failed, or the best route for evacuation.

Why Choose School Access Control Systems

In this day and age, student safety and school security are of paramount importance. Consider all options , including access control systems. However, take care not to be too heavy-handed. Security companies such as All Campus Security offer a wide range of security solutions, from access control to video surveillance, handling all facets of school security system installation. School administrators should, in every case, consult with certified security professionals to identify the best solution for their facility. 

Video Surveillance for Businesses – Why?

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Video surveillance systems are one of the easiest and most effective ways to protect your business. Not only from break-ins and burglaries but also from vandalism, theft and lackadaisical employees. Though important for commercial businesses, video surveillance for pharmacies is becoming more and more important. 

The opioid crisis and the diversion and abuse of prescription medications and pharmaceutical drugs is on the rise. Hence, pharmacies and drugstores have become prime targets for theft and break-ins.

A 2017 article by The Ontario College of Pharmacists details the responsibility pharmacies have to prevent opportunities for drug diversion. With around 7 134 pharmacy theft incidents occurring per year, there is a 14% chance of a pharmacy being robbed or burglarized. And, all pharmacies must be aware of the potential that exists for robberies, especially by those in search of narcotics.

Though there is nothing that can absolutely protect a pharmacy from break-ins and burglaries. However, certain measures can be taken to decrease the risk, and protect staff, customers and property.

According to the Pharmacy Crime Report, most criminals will visit their target pharmacy before the robbery, and visible video surveillance can deter criminals simply by their presence. 

Using Video Surveillance for Businesses

Video surveillance for business helps to monitor employee workflow, create a safer workplace, prevent employee theft, and reduce insurance costs. Besides acting as a preventative measure, video surveillance in pharmacies can also improve customer service quality, punctuality, and workplace discipline. 

Ideally, cameras should be placed:

  • On the sales floor, to allow you to react quickly to vandalism and theft
  • At the checkout area, because 40% of monetary losses happen at checkout
  • In the back office area, especially where stock is kept to prevent employee theft
  • At entrances, because 50% of pharmacy robbers enter through the front of the store

Benefits of IP Surveillance Systems for Pharmacies

While most pharmacies traditionally use closed-circuit television cameras, developments in IP surveillance systems have made them a powerful tool. Their resolution capabilities far outweigh any other surveillance system on the market. And, they are capable of capturing HD quality even when there is a high level of motion involved. This makes them the ideal video surveillance system for pharmacies. 

Some of the benefits of IP surveillance systems include:

1. Prevent some incidents of theft

According to some studies, the presence of visible video surveillance cameras alone was enough to deter 61% of criminals. Though the study referred specifically to break-ins and burglaries, visible cameras can also deter some theft by staff and visitors.

2. Record incidents of theft by robbers, employees and visitors

Should the visible surveillance not prove a deterrent, IP surveillance systems provide high-quality video without needing large amounts of storage. They also offer remote-access capabilities, allowing for crystal clear captures of any attempted theft during working hours. The high-level of detail attained by IP surveillance systems is extremely useful in capturing identifying information which can aid in possible prosecution. 

3. Register cases of vandalism and property damage

With  motion detection and text notification capabilities, IP surveillance systems are able to capture any security breaches, such as break-ins and vandalism, but can also notify you and your security service, of any issues in real time 

4. Reduce the number of pharmaceuticals sold without a subscription

Many hospital pharmacies now require visual documentation of all drug dispensing, to reduce drug diversion and ensure they help the correct patient. 

4. Provide safe routes for pharmaceutical deliveries

Pharmacy directors are responsible for providing safe routes for the delivery of pharmaceuticals, and visible IP video surveillance not only deters any thieves, but is also capable of capturing HD footage of any possible robberies. Video surveillance also provides visual verification of the arrival time and content of shipments, keeping delivery drivers and employees honest and reducing the risk of drug diversion. 

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Choosing Video Surveillance for Businesses

Unfortunately, with abuse of prescription medication on the rise, pharmacies are prime targets for break-ins and theft, and security systems have become a necessity. Video surveillance for pharmacies protects both customers and employees, and provides a clear record of any theft or vandalism, capturing footage in a resolution of up to 3 megapixels, which can make all the difference when it comes to identifying suspects after the fact.

IP surveillance systems also cover a wider field of view than their CCTV counterparts, allowing you to use fewer cameras and less cabling to cover the same areas – the dispensing counter, the sales floor, entries and exits, as well as delivery entrances. They also require less maintenance and are easiest to integrate with other business security solutions such as alarm systems and monitoring stations. Providing easy system expansion, remote access, smart search capabilities and automated alerts, they are the ideal solution for pharmacies. 

There are some privacy concerns when utilizing video surveillance for businesses, such as the confidential nature of prescriptions, and the customer’s right to privacy, but provided that the cameras do not record any private information about patients or their prescriptions, the benefits outweigh the risks.

Access Control Systems – Why Go IP?

Recent innovations in access control systems have made it easier to move from a legacy system to an IP-based one. However, there are still valid concerns for security directors. Including the cost of replacing entire systems and how much downtime there will be. Despite these concerns, there has never been an easier time to migrate to IP access control. Technological advancements, system design strategies, and new open protocols are making it easier for organizations to make the move to IP-based access control systems. Not only does it give them secure and flexible security solutions but it also keeps costs manageable.

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Minimized Wiring and New Hardware Costs Thanks to Increased Availability of Open Access Control Systems

Increased openness in the access control market minimizes the cost of new hardware and wiring. Organizations don’t want to be stuck with one provider or solution. Communication protocols are being written to foster interoperability, while vendors are releasing intelligent IP controllers. These allow for simultaneous communication between new Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) and IP-enabled wireless door locks. Including legacy equipment, and open IP access control software. This trend towards interoperability means that organizations are able to benefit from the functionality of new IP-based access control systems – without worrying about exorbitant costs for new wiring and hardware. 

Less Migration Costs and Time Thanks to the Availability of Convenient Tools for Transitioning Databases and Cardholders

During the dark ages of access control systems, a transition from one system to another was a lengthy and expensive process. Nowadays, organizations looking to upgrade to IP access control have access to migration and import tools. These are able to simplify the transition of databases and cardholders from legacy systems onto newer ones. This makes the entire process cost-effective and efficient.

Phased IP Access Control Installation Allow for Long-Term Budgeting and Planning

Open IP access control systems that support different technologies and devices allow you to map out your budget and system implementation. You can do so years in advance and it can be vital. While this type of phased approach allows you to replace the controllers first, you can then migrate specific doors or buildings to new IP-enabled readers later. At the same time, it also allows you to test new technologies before committing to one specific type. 

Benefits of IP Access Control Systems

Advances in technology and increased interoperability have made IP access control systems far more affordable than older legacy systems. This gives organizations greater ease of management and better security. Some other benefits include:

Power over Ethernet (POE)

Removing the need for power cables for every door, IP-based access control readers can run on Category 5e or Category 6 twisted pair cable. This is done with Power over Ethernet Technology. Whereas, you can install reader controllers near the doors for even less cable.

Redundancy/Failover

You can configure your systems for redundancy. Including data routed through alternate paths resulting from a cut cable. Additionally, they can store information and credentials, allowing them to operate temporarily during lost server access.

Remote Management

Thankfully, all you need to make changes to an IP access control system are an internet connection and a web browser

Open Standards

As mentioned earlier, the trend towards openness means that organizations won’t be tied to only one product or vendor. When commencing with IP access control installation, this interoperability allows for finding the product and solution that works best for your organization. 

Scalability

IP access control systems allow for complete scalability. You can manage everything from a single computer, without the hindrance of older legacy systems 

Notifications

Allowing for a wide array of automatic notifications, such as email alerts if a door is open, IP access control systems generate automatic alarms. You choose these from within the software

Integration with Other Systems

One of the major advantages of IP-based access control is their ability to integrate with other security products, such as video surveillance or time systems, under single interface, allowing for better facility monitoring and management

Tracking and Logging

IP access control installation allows for the automatic tracking and recording of users and their activities within the building, creating an indisputable record should any incidents occur.

Anti-Passback

IP access control systems allow for anti-passback rules. These prevent employees from passing their access tokens to someone else without first exiting. This can also serve to prevent incidents

In short, migrating from a legacy system to an IP-based one allows organizations to more easily expand and customize their physical infrastructure for easy operation. IP access control systems offer many benefits such as Power over Ethernet (PoE) and efficient multi-site management technology, and there has never been a better time to make the switch. Have a look at our solutions to see how easy it is.