If you're thinking about access control, you might be considering a new biometric system. Biometric systems use specific "biological metrics" to track who has access. Most commonly, these are either iris scans or fingerprints. There are both pros and cons to such a system, which can be used to secure everything from a door to a computer or phone system.
Pro: They're Easy for the End User
An end user doesn't need to remember a thing to access a biometric scanner. They simply need to be able to either let their eye be scanned or hold a finger (or multiple fingers) to a scanner. This means no more forgotten keycards or passwords -- the user can simply breeze right in. Security technology often fails due to user error; this system eliminates the capacity for that error.
Con: They Can Be Finicky
Biometric scanning is still a fairly new type of access control system -- and it errs on the side of a false negative rather than a false positive. That means users may find themselves having to repeat their scans fairly frequently, as their scans may not be immediately readable. If employees are quickly going in and out, they could find this frustrating at best, harmful to productivity at worst.
Pro: They Are Very Difficult to Defeat
Because biometric scanning uses a highly individual type of data, it's very difficult to defeat. You would need to be able to replicate an individual's eye or finger in order to be able to get through this type of scanner. When it comes to passwords, the systems are usually more forgiving because they are easier to guess or find.
Con: They Still Can Be Tricked
But though they are difficult to defeat, they aren't impossible to defeat. Fingerprint scanners, for instance, have been shown to be able to be defeated by something as simple as super glue. Iris scanners are substantially more complicated, but in general, if someone has access to someone's fingerprints or a high-resolution picture of their iris, they may be able to get into some access control technologies.
So should your organization invest in a biometric access control system? In fact, the best system may perform a type of two-factor authentication -- using both a keyed in pin or password in addition to a biometric scan. Biometric scans certainly make a system far more secure, but that doesn't mean that they are without flaw. To learn more, contact a company like Complete Cabling Solutions Inc.