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  • Courtney Durler

Improving Physical Security with Access Control




Verkada Access Control allows organizations to gain greater visibility and control across the entire organization, which improves physical security and gives business owners peace of mind.


With technology advancing at an exponential rate since the first computer was built in the early 1960’s, there has always been a huge emphasis on data security systems. Even before the Internet was invented, the first password to be required for computer usage was in 1961 for the Compatible Time Sharing System (CTTS), one of the first operating systems invented at MIT. There were no networks or connections that could be exploited, of course, so the password precautions were meant for user error and malfeasance in the physical realm.


From then on, technology experienced an interesting evolution of cybersecurity.


1970’s: The world’s first computer virus called “The Creeper” was invented, which behaved like a benign computer “worm,” infecting one computer after another with a brief, taunting message. It spread through one of the earliest computer networks used by the US Department of Defense. This caused the birth of the world’s first antivirus program called “The Reaper” which was designed to chase down and eliminate The Creeper.


1980’s: Hacking and international espionage burst onto the scene in 1986, as Russia hired a German hacker to steal US military secrets containing ultra sensitive data. This caused the introduction of Computer Emergency Response Teams, or more familiarly, CERT.


1990’s: The invention of the Internet opened the general public up to the possibility of cyber threats and computer viruses on a personal level. Concepts like the firewall and antivirus programs were born, and still play a vital role in cybersecurity efforts to this day.


2000’s: It had taken some time for the seriousness and scale of computer crime to be understood, and US courts began passing down serious sentences for such offenses. But cyber attacks continued to grow exponentially year over year, which then caused levels of security to become more sophisticated.


2010’s: Improved and expanded cybersecurity offerings became more readily available for personal and business use. Services like 24/7 threat response and new regulations empowered the general public to protect itself against computer threats of all kinds.


Cybersecurity threats are evolving with technology and businesses must continue to stay vigilant in protecting company data from these changing dynamics. But with so much effort spent on data protection, we mustn’t lose sight of the day to day physical security that is also vulnerable in businesses. One way to mitigate physical security risks while still maintaining strong data security is to implement a reliable Access Control system.


ACCESS CONTROL


What is Access Control? Access Control is a key component of data and physical security in the workplace, referring to a set of protocols that authenticate and authorize individuals to access information and/or physical entry. It is a method of assuring that individuals are who they say they are and that they have the appropriate permissions to access certain data and files.


Basically, any company or organization whose employees work from the Internet needs some level of access control in place. But government agencies, healthcare, legal firms, and other businesses dealing with highly sensitive data have a paramount need for top-of-the-line access control software to operate safely and in compliance with privacy regulations.


Generally, there are four types of Access Control.


  1. Discretionary Access Control

  2. Mandatory Access Control

  3. Role-Based Access Control

  4. Attribute Based Access Control


DISCRETIONARY ACCESS CONTROL


Discretionary Access Control (DAC) is an access control model that operates by restricting access to data and areas based on the identity of the subjects to which they belong. The system is discretionary in the sense that a subject with a certain access permission is capable of passing that permission on to any other subject. DAC is commonly known to be in direct contrast to Mandatory Access Control (MAC).


MANDATORY ACCESS CONTROL


Mandatory Access Control (MAC) is a type of access control where the operating system prohibits the ability of a subject to access or perform some kind of operation on a specific object. Here, the subject usually refers to a process and the object is a construct, such as a file or directory. This security policy is generally controlled by a security policy administrator.


ROLE-BASED ACCESS CONTROL


Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) is defined around roles and privileges in the company. It is used by the majority of organizations with more than 500 employees because its components of role-permissions and user-role relationships make it simple to perform user assignments. Roles are created for different job functions and the authorization to access and perform these functions are assigned to specific roles.


ATTRIBUTE-BASED ACCESS CONTROL


Attribute-Based Access Control (ABAC) incorporates access control software using “IF/THEN” logic to grant permissions based on combining different attributes together. User attributes, resource attributes, object attributes, and environmental attributes can all be used when assigning permissions in this model.


No matter what industry your business operates in, if your data could be of any value to someone without proper authorization to access it, then your company needs strong access control. The right type of access control depends on employee numbers, data type, and company hierarchy.


Now let’s switch gears and explore physical access control, something that tends to get overlooked as more and more emphasis is put on data security.


Physical access control is the restriction of access to a physical space within an organization. In addition to limiting access to the building, rooms, and assets, physical access control keeps track of who is coming and going in restricted areas. This type of physical access control solution protects businesses against trespassers and monitors employee movement to make sure sensitive regions of the building are protected.


VERKADA ACCESS CONTROL




Verkada Access Control monitors physical security using a combination of a door reader, a door controller, AI-designed security cameras, and Verkada Command, which is the management platform everything is monitored from.


Using the door reader, door controller and access cards, organizations can manage doors, users and schedules across the entire organization. These readers and controls work together seamlessly with Verkada security cameras to monitor real-time activity, providing a live feed of access-based events. From Verkada Command, the administrator can add and remove users as well as edit credentials and set permissions. This all-in-one Access Control solution is the answer to many different access-based threats to the organization.


Key features of Verkada Access Control include:


  • Instant video integration and insights

  • Limitless scalability across different buildings

  • Cloud-based software and management

  • Secure mobile, remote, and card access

  • Automatic software updates for latest security enhancements


USE CASE


Verkada security systems are truly changing the game of cloud security, especially when applied to school campus settings. In an era where gun violence has become a commonplace threat to schools, Verkada security cameras and access control work together to mitigate this deadly threat in a number of ways:


  • Verkada card readers and door controllers can deny access to anyone who does not have the appropriate permissions or access card

  • With previous photo uploads, Verkada AI-designed security cameras can identify known suspects who are an active threat to school and students and send instant alerts to administrators if this person is seen on campus

  • AI-designed security cameras can identify pre-set objects, like guns, captured in-frame and send instant alerts to administrators; a link to the live feed can be created and shared with emergency personnel to cut down on response time

  • Every door outfitted with a Verkada door controller can go on instant lockdown with the push of a button from Verkada Command, a permission that is easily assigned among users


Verkada’s revolutionary suite of security protocols allows organizations to stay one step ahead of internal and external threats. This peace of mind allows business owners and school administrators to focus more on operations and less on the stress that comes with maintaining building security.


To get started with Verkada Access Control or any other cloud-based business solution, please visit our online store or click here to request a free demo.


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