Although interest in access control was already growing, the COVID-19 pandemic further accelerated the adoption of these technologies.
In addition to securing and controlling facilities, access control is now being used to help control the spread of COVID-19 through innovative mobile and cloud solutions.
So it should come as no surprise that these areas appear in the 2021 access control trends.
1- Mobile access control
The use of mobile-based credentials is the organic evolution for the physical security and Access Control in Chicago industry. 93% of the entire US population uses a smartphone and charges the device 24 hours a day. Alternatively, keycards are inconvenient, scoring as the second most overlooked item. Since most keycards are unencrypted RFID proximity cards that can be easily cloned, mobile credentials also offer a more secure solution. Convenient and more secure, we’re seeing a strong shift towards mobile access control.
2- Cloud-based security
Physical security is seeing a strong shift towards cloud-based access control due to the huge benefits provided in terms of operational improvements, greater security and easier access management across multiple locations to reap the benefits of unlimited scalability.
Multi-site access management was previously a seriously sub-optimal experience. For example, if an employee is visiting a different branch, they will need several days notice to prepare for their arrival in terms of security and access. Manual processes like these, in addition to being inconvenient, result in greater credential leakage and security inconsistencies.
Adoption of cloud-based systems has become an emerging trend due to the ability to manage multiple sites on a single system. Access levels can be easily managed across all sites. Plus, you can manage a global infrastructure without compromising security or convenience. In fact, security is enhanced and convenience is greater in this environment.
3- Multifactor authentication
Multifactor and multimodal approaches have significant benefits. Multi-factor authentication is more secure than single-factor authentication. It also helps organizations feel more comfortable with single sign-on, and single sign-on is a favorite with users because it greatly simplifies network access. In addition, multifactor authentication may be required by regulation to handle personally identifiable information.
Multi-factor authentication is often used by consumers when changing account passwords or transacting online; they will be instructed to enter a PIN sent via SMS or email, for example, to verify identity. These are called push notifications and are a favorite of research firm and analyst Gartner. Gartner predicted that 50% of companies using mobile authentication would adopt it as their primary verification method by the end of 2019.
4- Biometric technology
Biometrics has been around for decades in the access control industry, limited by high cost, accuracy issues, privacy issues and other issues. But with falling prices, improving quality and concerns about privacy, it’s becoming a viable access control technology in the COVID-19 era. With the advancement and innovation in facial recognition access control technology, Security system installation is economical and can compete with the cost of alternative key card systems.
Instant self-enrollment and simple integration have made face recognition more accessible than ever before. Cloud dashboards allow administrators to centralize access management. In the COVID-19 world and beyond, facial recognition will be a critical form of authentication given the touch less experience. Previous implementations of facial recognition access control systems have suffered from poor accuracy, anti-spoofing issues and lack of privacy controls. But advances in recent years have catapulted technology into the medium.
5- Subscription-based business model
Traditionally, access control has been a business model driven by hardware sales. You buy readers, keycards and panels from the distribution and you have an integrator to set up and program the local server. Updates need to be scheduled manually and an IT staff is required for the operation. Times change, as does our culture and security landscape. And so, this model is being phased out and replaced with subscription-based access control operated from the cloud to give end users the control and flexibility they want.