Security News: Access Control Systems: Key Components

Security News: Access Control Systems: Key Components

Security News: Access Control Systems: Key Components

Reprinted from American Alarm

Access control systems are an effective way to track and manage access to different areas of your commercial space. You can use them to track employee movement throughout your building, restrict access to specific zones, and change permissions expediently in the event of personnel changes. Access control systems can also help secure your building during emergencies.

These systems are customizable and may be streamlined or elaborate, depending on your organization’s needs. Advanced systems may incorporate biometric control systems for dual verification. They can integrate into your video monitoring system to make it easier to track employee movement.

Since every organization is unique, working with an experienced security provider is the best way to ensure your access control system meets your specific needs.

Below we’ll take a look at the common components of an access control system and how each of them works.

Credential Readers

Credential readers function like digital door locks. Instead of using a traditional lock and key, your system may use programmable cards, key fobs, and a credential reader. Cards and fobs can be individually programmed. This means each employee has their own ID number, enabling you to track who has access to each area of your business and when. Credential readers are usually integrated into a doorknob or mounted on the wall next to a door so individuals can scan credentials easily.


Keypads are an alternative to a card reader system. You can program a custom keycode for each area of your business. You can also assign unique keycodes to each of your employees, enabling you to track employee attendance and movement throughout your organization.

Electric Lock Hardware

Electric locks often look and function just like a traditional lock, including the use of a deadbolt. However, you can control them remotely through an app as well as with a physical key. These locks are commonly used for securing exterior doors in a business. When tied into a larger access control system, they can be programmed to lock and unlock at specific times.

Alarm Systems

Access control systems often integrate with your other alarm systems to help control entry and exit points to your building during an emergency. Your access control system can be programmed to unlock all doors if a fire alarm is triggered. This ensures all exit points from the building are functional. In the same way, your access control could be programmed to lock doors if a burglar alarm is tripped.

Field Panels

A field panel is a control panel for your access control system that is housed within your building. While you can log into your access control system remotely, the control panel is a physical unit through which system components are routed. Large buildings may require multiple field panels to manage all of the devices within the system.

Access Control Software

Access control software is the program that runs your access control system. You use this software to program your system and store and access any associated data, including access codes and a system activity log. This software is often cloud-based, making it easy to access your system remotely from anywhere with an internet connection.

American Alarm offers a wide range of access control systems that include features like web-based access control, administrative assistance, and even open/close reports to help you track when your employees are coming and going at a glance. American Alarm’s experienced consultants can help you design an access control system that meets your organization’s specific needs.