Original Article: Mitchell Kane | CampusSafety
Back in the days when locks and keys were the standard-bearers for access control, performing routine maintenance was a relatively straightforward proposition. If a lock was faulty or keys needed to be replaced or made for new hires, a locksmith or custodian could simply replace the hardware or duplicate the necessary keys. Times have changed, however, and so too have the technologies that campuses use to keep students, patients, clinicians, staff and faculty members safe.
The introduction of electronic access control systems and the software platforms that manage them has brought numerous advantages. By leveraging credentials instead of keys, administrators and other school, university and hospital officials can not only keep tabs on who exactly is in their buildings at a given time, but they can also see when they arrived, what areas they accessed while they were there and when they left the premises. Of course, the ongoing upkeep that’s needed for these systems goes well beyond making sure the locks on the doors remain operable.
Being proactive in managing the database that feeds your access control system is a critical step that could save you a lot of headaches down the road. Every access control platform should have a feeder database of some sort, such as an HR management system, sharing data with it. This helps prevent stagnant records, improper history archival, record duplications, misspellings and updated privileges and restrictions.
Apply System Patches and Updates
It's paramount that campuses apply relevant firmware and software updates in a timely manner to not only their access control hardware devices and management platforms, but also on the overall operating system they use. Often when a security system is intended to be updated, it's found that the users' computer systems haven't been updated in many years. Applying updates and patches helps minimize exposure to cyber threats as well.
Where to Turn for Help
Because of budget constraints, many school districts and other types of campuses have a limited number of IT personnel. Often their resources are already stretched thin as they are trying to keep the networks of the facilities they are responsible for up and running. That means the task of keeping the PACS up to date could get put on the back burner, creating significant vulnerabilities. This is where security systems integrators, such as SmartEdge, can play a valuable role in helping to maintain access control systems within campuses.
Contact us today to get a Free Security Assessment of your campus!