Biometric access control for ISO 27001 accreditation

Shaun Oakes, Managing Director of ievo Ltd, the Newcastle-based manufacturer of biometric recognition systems, explains how access control is a vital factor for organisations working towards ISO  27001 accreditation.

The security of information or data storage is becoming increasingly vital to every organisation with their Information Security Management System (ISMS) now recognised as virtually a yardstick of their professionalism and integrity. The 2013 upgrading of the original ISO/IEC 27001 standard created a universally recognised benchmark by which all organisations could be judged before entering into commercial relationships and, as such, has become an extremely valuable asset for companies, highlighting the importance they place on data security as part of best business practice.

Whilst no ISMS can guarantee perfect security, and security breaches over the last few years are well documented, ISO/IEC 27001 accreditation will not only help businesses manage the security of their data but will also advertise this expertise to existing and potential clients. The standard looks at a number of core sections, which include IT systems, business processes and, most importantly, people.

An integral part of the accreditation process (Section A.11) deals with access control, looking at key areas such as user access management, user registration and password management and here the use of biometric security systems with fingerprint recognition readers enables organisations to not only cover all requirements of the Standard, but also facilitate additional security measures, should they be required to significantly reduce risks of security breaches and cyber attacks.

Many organisations, of course, rely simply on swipe cards or a numeric pin entry access system, but while access pins can be passed around or even guessed, with key cards sharing many of the same downfalls as well as increasing costs due replacing lost/damaged cards, biometric security systems bypass many of these vulnerabilities, and are becoming increasingly popular. Fingerprints are unique to each individual – unlike codes or key cards they can’t be passed or shared.

The implementation of the latest biometric recognition systems allows the organisation to secure commercial sites worldwide, adding an additional layer of safety to the businesses access control infrastructure. Each site’s visitor movements can be accurately monitored in real time from the access control system with certain areas restricted if needed. This provides the organisation with a sophisticated level of personnel movement information, vital for health and safety and fire roll call protocols..

ISO 27001 is now the standard by which the security of an organisations’ data is judged and companies without the accreditation, or which rely on old technology, may well be excluded when it comes to tendering for major contracts.

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Biometric security for Shetland construction site

Shetland Facilities Management (SFM) Security have provided Morrison Construction Ltd with a robust access control system utilising the very latest state-of-the-art fingerprint biometric recognition devices for their New Anderson High School and Halls of Residence development at Lerwick in the Shetland Islands.

As main contractor for the £56m project, Morrison’s brief for SFM was for an integrated access control system during construction which could give an accurate count of the workforce in each of the site’s two zones, split by company and trade discipline, for not only HSSE requirements but also emergency response, robust time and attendance recording and to capture the data and metrics required for project controls.

SFM’s solution was an integrated platform that combined biometric fingerprint readers from ievo Ltd, the Newcastle-based manufacturer of biometric recognition systems, with a Paxton Net2 access control system. Eight ievo fingerprint readers were installed on four entry turnstiles together with an ievo desktop enrolment reader for initial registering employee fingerprint templates in the site control room. SFM installed the equipment in two 20ft ISO container security portals (one for each zone of the project) which provided efficient through-put and foot-fall at peak and off-peak times.

Simon Orchard, Director of Security, Shetland Facilities Management, commented, “Logistical issues with using SMART cards alongside a large workforce we always found problematic. Using ievo’s biometric solution allows us to save costs whilst also improving efficiency. ievo devices are easy to install, robust, operational in harsh climates and working conditions and surpass all our operational needs. ievo provided the perfect biometric security solution and we are already planning on using them for our next project.”

Shaun Oakes, Managing Director of ievo Ltd, added, “ievo systems are designed for harsh environmental use, such as construction sites. It was vital that the fingerprint system would maintain operational regardless of the weather conditions or the amount of users enrolled. Being able to provide a system that can help identify and manage a large workforce is what ievo is designed for. The installation of the solution has now bedded in very effectively and Morrison Construction Limited staff liked the ease of use for both enrolment of fingerprints, and generating accurate and reliable reports.”

ievo Ltd is a leading designer and manufacturer of world class biometric recognition systems based in the North East of the UK. Offering full integration options, ievo Ltd provides a safe, secure and reliable biometric solution for the access control market.
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