Modern key management systems have become essential parts of commercial security protocols. They enable levels of security that were previously only accessible to those with enterprise-scale security budgets. In addition, key management systems offer new ways to organize access levels to many different assets, including secure facilities, vehicles, and equipment.
Every company has important assets that they want to protect. It could be mission-critical equipment, personnel, or even client data. Regardless of what it is, you undoubtedly want it kept safe, and this is where using a key management system will be beneficial.
What is a Physical Key Management System?
Key management is the process of securing, tracking, and distributing physical keys in the workplace. A physical key management system is one or more networked storage cabinets. They help you control costs and reduce overhead through automation. They also reduce key loss and the need for re-keying to nearly zero.
Storage cabinets store individual keys or different-sized key rings in locking slots. They only unlock when users authenticate themselves and specify which key ring they need. That way, you always have a complete audit trail of who took which keys and when. It is physically impossible for someone to take keys other than the ones they’re authorized to access.
Advanced key control cabinets come in various sizes with modular assembly so that you can customize their layout. For example, you may have many individual keys you want to be packed together in a small panel at one site. Then at another location, you might have a handful of very large key rings that need extra hanging space.
Access terminals are attached to key cabinets and authenticate users through one or more security methods. The most popular include PIN codes, RFID fobs, swipe cards, and biometric sign-ins like fingerprints, facial scanning, or iris eye scans. Each offers different capabilities and levels of security at different price points.
Radiofrequency identification (RFID) is short-range wireless technology commonly used for machine-to-machine communication. Many advanced physical key management systems use RFID tags to authenticate keys at sign-out and return. Users can return keys to any open slot, and the system will verify identity simply by scanning the tag, so it knows where to direct the next user.
Key systems are useful security technologies, but collecting and analyzing usage data makes them powerful business intelligence sources. That happens in a central management software dashboard. They help you manage everything in a commercial access control system, including alarms, reports, and personnel access. What that means, in practice, is you get better management over the entire workflow in which keys are used.
5 Ways Electronic Key Management Systems Ground Your Commercial Security
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Vice President of Marketing