What Is An "Access Control System by FUSEK”?


Simply defined, the term "access control" describes any technique used to control passage into or out of any area. The standard lock that uses a brass key may be thought of as a simple form of an "access control system".


Over the years, access control systems have become more and more sophisticated. Today, the term "access control system" most often refers to a computer-based, electronic card access control system. The electronic card access control system uses a special "access card or Key Fob", rather than a brass key, to permit access into the secured area. These days even your Mobile Phone. 


1. Discretionary Access Control (DAC)

Discretionary Access Control is a type of access control system that holds the business owner responsible for deciding which people are allowed in a specific location, physically or digitally. DAC is the least restrictive compared to the other systems, as it essentially allows an individual complete control over any objects they own, as well as the programs associated with those objects. The drawback to Discretionary Access Control is the fact that it gives the end user complete control to set security level settings for other users and the permissions given to the end user are inherited into other programs they use which could potentially lead to malware being executed without the end user being aware of it.

2. Mandatory Access Control (MAC)

Mandatory Access Control is more commonly utilized in organizations that require an elevated emphasis on the confidentiality and classification of data (ie. military institutions). MAC doesn’t permit owners to have a say in the entities having access in a unit or facility, instead, only the owner and custodian have the management of the access controls. MAC will typically classify all end users and provide them with labels which permit them to gain access through security with established security guidelines.

3. Role-Based Access Control (RBAC)

Also known as Rule-Based Access Control, RBAC is the most demanded in regard to access control systems. Not only is it in high demand among households, RBAC has also become highly sought-after in the business world. In RBAC systems, access is assigned by the system administrator and is stringently based on the subject’s role within the household or organization and most privileges are based on the limitations defined by their job responsibilities. So, rather than assigning an individual as a security manager, the security manager position already has access control permissions assigned to it. RBAC makes life much easier because rather than assigning multiple individuals particular access, the system administrator only has to assign access to specific job titles.


When used within this document, the term "access control system" refers to an electronic card access control system.


Access control systems are most commonly used to control entry into exterior doors of buildings. Access control systems may also be used to control access into certain areas located within the interior of buildings. Even driveway Gates or Service gates . 


The purpose of an access control system is to provide quick, convenient access to those persons who are authorized, while at the same time, restricting access to unauthorized people.


Your Security Needs and Access Control

When it comes to protecting your home or business, as well as the building’s occupants, access control is one of the best ways for you to achieve peace of mind. But, access control is much more than just allowing people to access your building, access control also helps you effectively protect your data from various types of intruders and it is up to your organization’s access control policy to address which method works best for your needs. There are a number of  access control systems you have to choose from to use in your residence or business facility; Contact FUSEK today .. 


Access control systems vary widely in type and complexity. However, most card access control systems consist of at least the following basic components:


Access Cards

The access card may be thought of as an electronic "key". The access card is used by persons to gain access through the doors secured by the access control system. Each access card is uniquely encoded. Most access cards are approximately the same size as a standard credit card, and can easily be carried in a wallet or purse.


Card Readers by Fusek 

Fusek Card readers are the devices used to electronically "read" the access card. Card readers may be of the "insertion" type (which require insertion of the card into the reader), or may be of the "proximity" type (which only require that the card be held in a 3" to 6" proximity of the reader. Card readers are usually mounted on the exterior (non-secured) side of the door that they control.


Access Control Keypads by Fusek 

Access control keypads are devices which may be used in addition to or in place of card readers. The access control keypad has numeric keys which look similar to the keys on a touch-tone telephone.


The access control keypad requires that a person desiring to gain access enter a correct numeric code. When access control keypads are used in addition to card readers, both a valid card and the correct code must presented before entry is allowed.


Where access control keypads are used in place of card readers, only a correct code is required to gain entry.


Electric Lock Hardware

Electric lock hardware is the equipment that is used to electrically lock and unlock each door that is controlled by the access control system.


There are a wide variety of different types of electric lock hardware. These types include electric locks, electric strikes, electromagnetic locks, electric exit devices, and many others. The specific type and arrangement of hardware to be used on each door is determined based on the construction conditions at the door.


In almost all cases, the electric lock hardware is designed to control entrance into a building or secured space. To comply with building and fire codes, the electric lock hardware never restricts the ability to freely exit the building at any time.


Access Control Field Panels


Access control field panels (also known as "Intelligent Controllers") are installed in each building where access control is to be provided. Card readers, electric lock hardware, and other access control devices are all connected to the access control field panels.


The access control field panels are used to process access control activity at the building level. The number of access control field panels to be provided in each building depends on the number of doors to be controlled. Access control field panels are usually installed in telephone, electrical, or communications closets.


Access Control Server Computer


The access control server computer is the "brain" of the access control system. The access control server computer serves as the central database and file manager for the access control system; and is responsible for recording system activity, and distributing information to and from the access control field panels.


Normally, a single access control server computer can be used to control a large number of card-reader controlled doors.


The access control server computer is usually a standard computer which runs special access control system application software. In most all cases, the computer is dedicated for full-time use with the access control system.


A Simple Access Control System


To explain the concept of a simple access control system, we will use a fictitious building, called the "Administration Building", as an example.


The management of the Administration Building has decided to install an access control system to improve security conditions at the building. Mary Simpson, the “security coordinator” for the building, has been assigned responsibility for implementing and managing the access control system.


There are two primary entrance doors to the Administration Building; one at each end of the building. Mary wants to control access through each of these doors.


There is a computer room located on the First Floor of the Administration Building. A single door leads from the main hallway into the computer room. Because of the sensitive nature of the equipment in the computer room, Mary wants to control access through this door.


Mary contacts the access control vendor to arrange for the installation of her system. The vendor, working with Mary, determines that three card readers will be required: one at the front building entrance door, one at the back building entrance door, and one at the door to the computer room. Mary decides to use insertion type card readers without keypads.


In addition to the card readers, each of the controlled doors will require the installation of electric lock hardware. A survey of the doors indicates that standard electric door strikes can be used.


To operate the three card readers at the Administration Building, one access control field panel is required. Mary decides to have this panel installed in a telephone closet that is centrally located within the building. Wiring will be installed between each of the card reader controlled doors and the access control field panel.

Access Control System Set-up and Operation


The vendor has completed the installation of the access control system at the Administration Building.


Mary, as security coordinator, will have day-to-day responsibility for managing the system. Before the system can be put into use, Mary must set-up or "define" the access control system software.


Set-up of the access control software is accomplished at the host computer. Set-up of the software involves setting various access control system parameters to meet the specific requirements of the building in which the system is installed.


Mary has already issued access cards to each of the tenants who will have access to the Administration Building. The first step in setting up the access control system is to "validate" each of the access cards. To validate the access cards, Mary must tell the access control system at what doors each of the cards can be used, and at what times.


The access control system allows a great deal of flexibility in "tailoring" the access privileges assigned to each card:

  • Doors: The system can allow the card to work at all card reader controlled doors; or only at specific doors.

  • Time Of Day: The system can allow the card to work 24 hours per day; or only during certain time periods (7:00 P.M.- 12:00 P.M. only, for example)

  • Day of Week: The system can allow the card to work seven days per week, or only on certain days (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday only, for example.)

  • Holidays: The system can allow the card to work differently on days defined as holidays.

  • Start and Stop Dates: The system can allow the card to only work during certain defined ranges of time (June 1 through June 15, for example.)




Using the Access Control System


On the day the access control system is placed into service, all persons desiring to enter the Administration Building must use their access card.


Using the access card is simple. To enter the building, the user simply inserts his card into the slot, allowing the card to be "read" by the card reader.


The card reader instantly sends the card's identity number to the access control field panel, which verifies that the card is valid at that door at that time. If the card is valid, the field panel immediately sends a signal to unlock the electric strike at the door, allowing the user to enter. The time between card insertion and door unlock is usually one second or less. In addition to unlocking the door, the access control field panel also sends a "valid access" transaction record to the server computer for storage. The valid access transaction record indicates the name assigned to the card, the name of the door that was entered, and the time that entry occurred.


Sometimes, a user may attempt to use his card at the wrong door; or at the wrong time. For example, if Bill Nelson (the part-time worker who is only supposed to work Monday and Tuesday) attempts to use his card to enter on Friday, he will not be granted entry.


When a user attempts to use his card incorrectly, the access control field panel will declare an "invalid access attempt". A transaction record of all invalid access attempts will be sent to the access control server computer for storage. The transaction record indicates the name of the cardholder, the name of the door at which entry was attempted, the reason for rejection (wrong time, wrong door, etc.), and the time that the entry attempt occurred.


Door Status Monitoring Feature


For the access control system at the Administration Building to work successfully, it is important that the card reader controlled doors be used as intended.


To prevent misuse, the access control system provides a "door status monitoring" feature at each of the card reader controlled doors. The door status monitoring feature provides two important functions:

  1. "Door-Forced-Open" Monitoring: In the event that any card reader door is opened from outside without the use of a valid access card, the system will cause a "Door-Forced-Open" (DFO) condition to occur.

  2. "Door-Open-Too-Long" Monitoring: In the event that any card reader door is propped open, the system will cause a "Door-Open-Too-Long" (OTL) condition to occur.

Automatic Unlock Feature


The access control system allows each card reader controlled door to be "automatically unlocked" during certain time periods if desired. An automatically unlocked door can be opened without requiring the use of an access card.


Reporting Features


The access control system automatically records various types of system "transactions" on the access control server computer's hard disk. The collection of these stored transactions is called the "system journal". The system journal is simply a computer database in which records of access control transactions are stored.


There are many different types of access control system transactions. Some of the more common types of transactions include:

  • Valid Access: A entry through a door using a valid access card.

  • Invalid Access Attempt: An attempt to use an access card at the wrong door or at the wrong time.

  • Door-Forced-Open (DFO) Condition: A door opened from the outside without the use of a valid access card.

  • Door-Open-Too-Long (OTL) Condition: A door propped open.

  • Equipment Failure Condition: Failure of a portion of the access control system or it's related wiring.

  • Power Failure Condition: Loss of primary power to the access control system.


The system journal can normally store several months’ worth of transactions, depending on the volume of activity generated at the building, and the size of the computer's hard disk.


The access control system allows the creation of reports of various types of system transactions. These reports are created at the access control server computer; and may be displayed on screen, or printed on a computer printer.


Reports can be created based on a set of parameters defined by the person managing the access control system. Some of these parameters can include:

  • Specific types of transactions

  • Specific ranges of time

  • Specific ranges of dates

  • Specific doors

  • Specific access cards


The flexible nature of the reporting feature allows the person managing the access control to custom-tailor a report to meet their specific needs.


Day-To-Day Operations


The following are some day-to-day operations that Mary Simpson, as manager of the access control system at the Administration Building, is likely to encounter:


Card Doesn't Work


Situation: The floors at the Administration Building are being refinished this weekend. It will take 24 hours for the new floor finish to dry. The building management has notified all employees not to enter the building this weekend, but is afraid that some employees may forget and come in anyway.


Action: Mary sets the access control system to temporarily disable the access privileges of all employees (except custodial workers) until Monday morning.


In the examples used for the Administration Building, it has been assumed that all management of the access control system (set-up, card validation, creation of reports, etc.) would be accomplished from the server computer located in Mary Simpson's office.


In some cases, it is desirable to manage the access control system from more than one location. This is particularly true of larger systems, which may require that more than one person be involved in managing the access control system. When needed, it is possible to provide remote workstations connected to the access control server computer. These remote workstations are typically standard personal computers on which special access control system “client” software has been installed.