The Elements of an Effective Access Control System

The Elements of an Effective Access Control System

by Mike Boehm on January 23, 2023

Any successful sports team understands that Defense is just as important as Offense. While Quarterbacks and Strikers might take the spotlight just like revenue-generating activities such as sales and marketing, defensive strategies like your security system are equally crucial toward business growth and protecting your bottom line. 

Access control systems are the foundation of any security system for office buildings, factories, and brick-and-mortar stores. Access control is the business's process to grant or deny access to your property, data, and other objects. 

With a proper access control system, you can control and monitor access within a given system or environment.


The Three Elements of Access Control 

Access control systems typically include identifiers (such as usernames), authentication methods (such as passwords), and authorization processes to determine whether a user has permission to access specific data or areas. All access control systems are built to prevent unauthorized users from accessing secure areas or information on computers, databases, networks, or other digital media. 



The Identification process of an access control system is how your system views and verifies a user’s identity. Your system may use RFID Key Fobs, passwords, and PINs. 

Depending on the size of your company and the industry you work in, different levels of authentication may be required.



Access control systems limit access to information and data depending on the user’s security clearance, identity, or person’s role. The Authentication process makes sure the user is using their own identification credentials. 

This process will combine Identification techs like Proximity Key Fobs with facial scans, picture ID checks by security guards, or other layers of security. 

Authentication processes are the backbone of access control systems. They are responsible for verifying user identities and allowing permissions to secure areas or information.



Authorization is how security systems regulate which users can access certain areas or information. There are two types of authorization, discretionary and mandatory. 

Discretionary authorizations are when entities such as owners or administrators grant access to specific individuals based on their need to access or protect certain areas or information. For instance, when users gain personalized logins to company software tools or secure parts of the facilities. 

Mandatory authorizations are granted to users with common needs while protecting unauthorized user access. For example, when offices give employees RFID Key Fobs to enter the building.


The Importance of a Comprehensive Access Control System 

While some aspects of an access control system may be costlier than others, failure in either your identification, authentication, or authorization processes can leave your business vulnerable. 

To protect your valuable assets and bottom line, you must build a system that incorporates all three elements.


Features to Build Your Access Control System 

In creating a sound access control system that embodies all three elements, there are several products and features you should consider. Combining some or all of these features will protect you from unauthorized users and criminals.


Access Authority Configuration 

This authorization technology is the most standard part of any security system. These configuration systems can give custom access to user ID cards, Proximity Key Fobs, passcodes, or other security products. 

Configuration software can range in price and complexity. Some systems use manual input, while others can automate configuration processes for large-scale corporations.


Unique Alarm Notifications 

As a way for business owners to differentiate between urgent, non-urgent, and emergency events, different sounds and warnings can be used. For instance, an alarm for ‘Door Open’ and

‘Door Forced Open’ can relay different signals to employees. These warnings can be customized to signal when certain employees arrive or if various access points have been accessed.


Back-Office Accessibility 

As businesses incorporate mobile-friendly and smart-system technologies, security systems should also advance. In recent years, Access Control systems have allowed employees to access back-office areas remotely easily and on-site. This may include on-site facial recognition, keycard scanners, and digital interfaces created for employee use.


Scheduled Backups 

An essential feature of any access control system is to ensure that data is regularly backed up. Data configurations and security settings can be easily lost if your security system fails. You can save time and money by conducting scheduled backups if the information is lost. 

If your security system uses cloud technologies, your data is already backed up regularly. However, you still may want to conduct scheduled backups as a fail-safe.


Custom Reports 

Another desirable feature of security software is the ability to run custom reports. These reports can provide information and analytics for the following:


  • Door activity history
  • Invalid access attempts
  • On-site tracking
  • Security warnings (such as door openings, forced door openings, transaction types, specific doors, etc.)

Business owners can gain valuable insights into security usage, technical issues, or vulnerabilities through custom reporting.


Elevator Control 

Many office buildings will include elevator control points where users can scan an ID badge or RFID key fob to access specific floors. This system is perfect for properties with multiple companies on-site or when businesses want to control floor-level access for their employees.


Photo & Video Notifications 

With many security systems featuring cameras, some can capture real-time photos and videos when users access certain areas or information. For instance, pictures or video recordings can be taken each time an employee accesses certain areas to confirm their identity. These photos and videos can automatically be sent to security administrators to notify them of user access.


Building an Access Control System to Protect Your Business 

Regardless of your business size or industry, you will need a robust security system to protect your assets. Access Control Systems are the foundation of a comprehensive security system for companies with in-person facilities. 

However, building a proper Access Control System can take time and effort. Therefore, it’s always best to work with trusted professionals like Authoriz-ID

Authoriz-ID has a team of experienced professionals ready to help bring RFID tech to your business. Our customer support team is always available to answer any questions and provide technical support to help you create a safer and more efficient workplace.