Biometric technology is the future of access control

biometric facial recognition

This is a guest post by Bethwel Njore, a marketing professional at Swiftlane.

Amidst growing security concerns, governments, companies, and property managers must implement trusted identity solutions while also ensuring efficiency. Access control cards have been in use for decades, but they are increasingly becoming inadequate for the evolving security landscape. One progressive technology that is filling this gap is biometrics-based access control. Some key advantages of biometric access control are heightened security and fewer resource requirements.

Biometric technology in access control

There are several types of biometric technologies in use right now:

Fingerprints – This technology has been used by law enforcement agencies for more than 100 years. This technology captures the unique valley patterns and graphical ridges of the fingerprint – providing reliability in access control and other security applications.

Hand geometry – This type of biometric technology measures the length, thickness, width, and surface area of the hand. Surface elements of the skin such as grime, dirt, and scars do not affect the accuracy of hand geometry. Security developers have used this tech for more than 40 years.

Eye pattern – Iris and retina scan biometric technology is based on the unique physiological characteristics of the eye. The iris is located at the front of the eye, while the retina lines the back of the eye on the inside. Although iris scanning is less intrusive, retina scanning provides more accuracy.

Face recognition – Face recognition uses data such as 3D shape, skin texture analysis, vascular and heat pattern to uniquely identify users. The system maps out facial features by analyzing unique characteristics such as shape, size, or relative position of the eyes, jaw, and cheekbones. The resulting data is then converted into a template and compared with a database of known faces to find a match. In access control applications, only matched users will be granted access into the building. Security alerts can be triggered when users who are not authorized attempt to gain access to your facility.

The future of access control

Advances in technology have seen facial recognition take off in the past few years. The facial recognition global market is expected to generate $7 billion in revenue by 2024, a 16.6 percent CAGR from 2019 to 2024. These numbers point to a dominant trend that puts facial recognition at the center of the future of access control. Furthermore, the reality on the ground reflects this trend. Mobile face recognition is used to secure hundreds of millions of smartphones around the world. Cloud-based access control is helping secure buildings across the country, from high-rise apartments to commercial property and industrial facilities. Enterprise providers are finding approaches to balance security with privacy.

Benefits of face recognition access control

Facial recognition provides the most secure access authorization, unlike key cards which have major drawbacks. Users only need to show their face at a scanner and the system will establish their unique credentials and figure out whether they are authorized. Key benefits of biometric technology include:

Convenience – Users are not required to carry physical access tokens to interact with the system. This provides convenience and eases the adoption burden for administrators. Furthermore, cloud access control allows for remote management, reduced exposure to local vulnerabilities, and seamless updates. Users simply download an app and register using their mobile device.

Integration – Face recognition technology offers a simple integration with existing systems. Not only is integration seamless, but the mobile and cloud-based platforms that host this biometric technology are also incredibly user-friendly; almost everyone is familiar with these interfaces already.

Audit trails – Cloud-based door access control provides real time updates. This makes it easier to figure out what user accessed what area, and at what time. More so, this audit trail provides a valuable tool for investigation in case of anomalies.

COVID-19 safety – Face recognition enables touchless access control. In the age of COVID-19, building managers must master the skill of maintaining a hygienic environment. Eliminating the need to touch surfaces and enable social distancing is an efficient solution in line with hygienic practices.

Biometric and access control technology have both evolved significantly over time. The integration of the two technologies compounds these developments to create a killer application for building access control. With COVID-19 still prominent, the fusion of the two systems has created the opportunity to best optimize security and physical wellness.

About the author

Bethwel Njore is a marketing and copywriting professional for Swiftlane, a touchless access control company. He provides credible information to users in the form of case studies, industry-specific whitepapers, and blog posts.

DISCLAIMER: Biometric Update’s Industry Insights are submitted content. The views expressed in this post are that of the author, and don’t necessarily reflect the views of Biometric Update.

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