• Category:
  • Document type:
  • Level:
  • Page:
  • Words:


Security and Control Systems Technology: Recent and new development in ACS technologies


Access control systems (ACS) keep evolving and changing. The change is meant to improve their reliability. The safety in the work environment should not be taken lightly. The systems allow who enters or leave the workplace. The systems can control who enter specific areas of a building or faculty. The systems further facilitate administrators to supervise workers activities. The systems help monitor the overall safety of an entire establishment. This paper will explore new and recent developments in access control systems technologies.

Types of control portals

A portal is a central location where any information is made accessible to various audiences. Portals can be classified into two main categories- i.e. the content management portal and enterprise information portal. Often, the two types of the portal must be combined, implemented so as to meet the full scale of any firm requirements (Oracle Application Server Portal, 2005).

Enterprise information portals are primarily designed to combine an immense range of information from various sources on a single screen. The consumers of this information are often not the publishers to this form of portal. They are the consumers of the information all set and published by others. The supply of such information is often in the form of personalization or a sophisticated search engine to assist users locate essential information easily and quickly. An organization’s information portal can offer information to a few users or thousand of users (Oracle Application Server Portal, 2005). Currently, Yahoo is the most used enterprise information portal, providing timely data from weather feeds, financial institutions and so on all over the world.

Content management portals are meant to improvise information access and sharing. Content management portals support self-service publishing characteristics which allow the users to post and share any form of information with their colleagues irrespective of the geographical difference. Take the case of a development faction consisting of engineers who include Quality assurance and product managers working from different locations in the world. Every participant in this project has the documents they require to share among themselves in the team. In such situation, everybody is in the position to alter and add information to the portal. This contradicts the enterprise information portal; and any user the authority to retrieve and add information to the portal framework (Oracle Application Server Portal, 2005).

New developments of control portals include Entrance control which demands the integration of control reader so as to allow users to present their credentials (RS2 Technologies, 2009). This portal enhances the degree of security of access control system by both offering a means of detecting intruders or physical barriers to bar unauthorized access and producing an alarm. New developments in control portals include the invention of turnstiles. Turnstiles are unique in that they limit passage to one person at ago. Turnstiles have the ability to allow one direction passage and can bar individuals that have not surrendered the right identification or paid the required fee from accessing certain points. Because of their advanced technology, turnstiles are widely used in office lobbies, toilets public transport stations, stadiums among others Sentry Security System Inc., 2016).

Locking devices

An Access Control System (ACS) is applicable for any door that one may wish to monitor and regulate access. Exterior and interior doors can be easily observed with contacts, readers, and some locking devices. There are new developments in locking devices that vary from the simple Maglocks to the complex motor locks (Center for Protection of National Infrastructure, 2013). The new evolution of the lock devices includes the motor, solenoid, solenoid handle and electric locks. The motor lock is more advanced and suitable for the high-security level. These locks use deadbolts and in the case of a power blackout, the lock will remain in the position it was at the time of power interruption. It only takes seconds to withdraw the deadbolt of a motor lock (Sentry Security System Inc., 2016).

The second in the rank is the Solenoid handle lock operates in the same way like traditional mechanical latch lock, although it can disable either one or both handles. Solenoid handle door is more advanced than the solenoid locks. Solenoid locks work in the same manner as an electric strike, except that the mechanism is restricted inside the lock case. The solenoid moves a pin which dislocates or engages the handle movement to the latch. When locked, the handle moves normally, but it remains unconnected to the lock, allowing the handle to move freely without any effect. When unlocked, the lock reacts like a conventional lock causing movements on the handle and finally pulling the latch inside. Under attack, this type of lock device is also suitable for high-level security because the lock behaves in a similar manner like a conventional lock (British Security Industry Association. 2016).

Cards and other tokens

Most access control systems require access card readers and control cards. These systems require readable cards so that the cardholders can unlock doors by availing their respective card to the reading device. In simple situations, the card will either open the gate or not. In the advanced system, the card may selectively permit entry through some entrance and not through others. The card stores information about who can access what and who has what card. The reader at any access controlled door transmits the given details of the card to the controller for validations of the card’s permission (Sentry Security System Inc., 2016).

Initially, card readers would use only a magnetic strike; however, currently they use proximity cards which have Radio Frequency Identification (RFID). This technology just requires the card to be held near the reader for it to be validated. Such cards do not wear out, and they are not easily duplicated. The only demerits with these cards are that they can be stolen, lent or misplaced; hence, giving access to unauthorized access. Moreover, additional security measures are provided for these cards which include the use of unique user information. This user information ranges from a simple PIN on a numeric keypad to biometric devices like facial and retinal scanners, and fingerprint readers. Also, cards offer several intelligent characteristics like anti-pass back where a card holder can exit a door but cannot re-enter. Furthermore, they can interfere with theft video surveillance and alarm systems to offer an excellent degree of security complexity (British Security Industry Association. 2016).

Communications and Networking System

Communication is passing on information to intended persons or within parties of the same interest, with the intention of creating an understanding. A network is a series of point or nodes interconnected by communication paths, not necessarily on the same channel but usually with a common feedback point.Access and Communications System (ACS) technology encompass a series of networks and communication lines to ensure efficiency in terms of thorough security in organizations or high profile institutions. Several developments have been done in ACS including recent technologies in communications and networking, power supplies and relevant ancillaries to improve the system’s functioning.

Automated control systems which use electronic technology cannot function on their own and need continued monitoring and communication between authorized personnel handling access control systems. Latest ACS technology software integrates the most advanced expertise with innovative networking capabilities to serve even big facilities. For instance, installation of telephone and voice mail systems with advanced feature like direct dialing, off-hook voice announce and recording telephone conversations directly to the voice mailbox for easier identification and tracking of culprits. These features were not available in the recent past, and factors that led to many criminals getting away with burglary and other forms of intrusions to private property (Ballad, Ballad & Banks, 2010)

In terms of networking, to ensure that several systems are integrated for uniform monitoring and maintenance, new technologies have created overhead paging systems which are networked to serve many departments or sections in an organization for easier communication. Moreover, due to the need to provide communication on both voice and data formats, modern technology has specialized in creating cabling infrastructure that suits these needs. Fibre optic cable enables long-distance communication and networking between different departments.

Power Supplies Technology

Access control gates and doors should be supplied with the right amount and monitored power supply to avoid malfunctioning, which may lead to unauthorised or disruption of urgently needed access to a guarded place.With no advanced technology in the past, companies relied on Switching Power Supplies, which were designed for use with resistive or capacitive loads such as high voltage lamps, alarm pane, cameras and signalling devices. This type of power supplies had difficulties handling the inductive loads produced by locking devices due to the limited current reserve available to handle periods of high inrush. This caused malfunctioning of the doors and pushed researchers to look for lasting solutions to handle the problem.

Linear Power Supply then came into play to replace the previous Switching Power Supplies technology, by enabling supply of power on resistive, capacitive and inductive loads which could handle large inrush currents. Large filter capacitors ensure that there is enough reserve power which provide extra current for short periods of time without breakdown or faults. High frequency noise experienced in switching power supplies is also avoiding when using linear power supply, which makes it suitable for use in ACS. However, linear power supply would generate a lot of heat by the regulator due to its efficiency, which damages heat-sensitive parts of the appliance over time. This led to the creation of the Hybrid Power Supply, which combines the feature of the Switching and the Linear Power Supply technology. It generates low heat while is suitable for powering resistive, capacitive and inductive loads, which ensures enough current stored as backup for supplying the access control systems (Friedewald & Pohoryles, 2016).

Relevant Ancillaries

Ancillaries are things that supplement and support something, for this case things that make the whole access control system work, including locks, exit doors, armored door loops, door contacts among others. These ancillaries ensure that the system works in relation to security alerts and emergency exits, for example by keeping or delaying intruders from gaining access to protected areas.

In the early years, people would be given access codes and passwords to feed on a keypad at entry points to gain access to different doors, but since the codes could leak and be crammed by unknown persons, the system developed to the use of fingerprint scanners so that it recognizes only people whose information is in the organization’s database. Since it is difficult to duplicate fingerprints, only the authorized personnel would be able to access restricted areas. Close to this is the eye scanner, which would scan a person’s eyes for identification before the door opens up. In addition, door hinges which were found to wear out over time and pose a security threat, were constantly checked for damages and greased to prevent malfunctioning (Honey, 2000).

Push Release Buttons (PTB), also replaced the key padded gadgets on the inside of a secured room so that those inside, assuming they are authorized to be inside, could simply use the PTB from inside to temporarily unlock the door which automatically closes behind them. The PTB is integrated with the locking gadget on the outside of the door so that there is communication that the door is open or locked at any time, warning when access is unsecured. For able persons, the PTB is installed using a simple flush press button, while a large hi-visibility unit is suitable for disabled individuals. Technology is constantly improving to ensure simplicity in the ACS while making sure utmost security levels is adhered to.


Presently, people never feel the impact of science fiction when using the retina during verification of an identity, especially when payments are being made. Around the entire globe, the deployment of biometric authentication has been swiftly acquired, greatly because of the extensive Smartphone adoption.

Besides there is an estimation of different technological research companies that up to half the number of buyers in markets which are established will implement the use of the wearable’s, together with Smartphone’s for payments through mobile. This issue targets the year 2018 to be fully completed. Also, the analysts set their objectives on the issue of biometric in 2014. For instance, the biometric methods will apply to the verification of the entire transactions that are made online (Ashbourn, 2011).

When focusing on matters of security and convenience, the consumers have been won by it, especially when dealing with Smartphone’s, together with the wearable mobile devices during crucial financial transactions. There is advancement in the issue of mobile payment device due to the popularity of Apple pay and apple watch.

Besides, the biometric authentication employed is seen to be a dependable and secure way to handle any transactions (Kamila K. 2016). For instance, the Deloitte Center that deals with financial services realized that a higher percentage than half of the customers surveyed has much consideration on biometric identification using the mobile devices for transactions that include finances. Also, a research group dealing with biometrics brought out an estimation of a huge number of people globally who are using the biometrics on their mobile devices at the end of 2015.

Since mobile devices are portable, this issue makes biometric authentication be a natural fit, since users can carry their biometric signatures. Also, the ATM biometric authentication use, together with its retail payment has been broadly adopted around the globe. Different new biometric recognition methods for the system of development are in development. For instance, it is used in heart rates, appreciation of eye movement, and ear recognition among other things.

Controllers, computers and other hardware

According to Elleithy & Sobh (2006), there are new developments in controllers, computers, among other hardware. For example, the steam hardware shows a new evolution in the technology. The steam controller being an innovative input device allows one to enjoy playing different games that come from all genres, which include, the traditional gamepad style games, together with the games that are played by the use of a mouse in collaboration with the keyboard.

The most impressing thing about the evolution is that the controllers have no wires, and also they are configured in a complete way. Besides, the steam link is also witnessed as a new development. It allows the existing steam gamers to do an expansion in the range of their current gaming set up through their home network. The connection of the stream machine to a home network, with a plug, enables streaming of games.

Also, there are steams VRs that act as controllers. It includes a headset, drivers that are single handed, together with two significant stations that appear on the base to track them entirely in a similar absolute space. While considering the new developments in computers, it is evident that different designs of machines have been brought out since the earlier times, until the 3-box models were invented. Unlike the other earlier machines, all the data together with the instructions are stored in the principle memory.

Besides, the instructions are forwarded to the processor along the system bus for execution. Also, when in comes to the inputs and outputs, there related devices perform the required action with data moving from the input and output devices towards the processor and primary memory by using the system bus as the means. For instance, when we consider a program that is stored on a DVD, to be able to get the machine to run it, data has to be put from the DVD towards the memory by the means of a system bus.After the program has completed loading into the memory, feedback will be obtained. That is; instructions are sent to the CPU line by the line making use of the system bus and executed there. The entire things to be shown on a screen are later forwarded to the output box.

From different components of a computer, for example, a processor, the aspect of new development is also seen. For instance, in modern processors, there are a million of transistors, unlike the ones that existed before (Mueller, 2003). This explains how fast and efficient the issue of executing programs is.


Focusing on software, there are new developments that are achieved. For instance, different spyware is put on Smartphone’s to ensure security (Reveron, 2012). In a case where a bank is robbed, manipulated banknotes are always in the loop. This issue will result in an explosion, which releases a colorful dye, which marks the money as stolen. The similar principle is used by researchers for identification of spyware on Smartphones.

Computer scientists who come from different fields such as the center for IT security, privacy and accountability have developed a similar matching application for the present version of the Android Smartphone operating system. This issue enables for effective monitoring of different malicious apps. Besides, various versions of Android are currently on a move to ensure that the software is taken into a wider variety of devices. The development of latest versions such as Android 6.0 is already rolling throughout the markets. The device makers can access the Google Android software for free.


The need for security improvement continues to drive development of new access control systems. However, besides developing new systems, the existing systems also get improved continually. The improvement come through research and development that drive innovation to ensure the systems respond to existing and emerging threats.


Ashbourn, J. (2011). Guide to biometrics for large-scale systems: Technological, operational, and user-related factors. New York: Springer.

Ballad, B., Ballad, T. & Banks, E. (2010). Access Control, Authentication, and Public Kew Infrastructure. Information Systems Security & Assurance Jones & Bartlett Learning information system security & assurance series. Jones & Bartlett Publishers

British Security Industry Association. (2016) A Pacifier’s Guide to Access Control Systems. Retrieved from

Center for Protection of National Infrastructure. (2013). Door Security: A Guide to security doorsets and associated locking hardware. Retrieved from

Friedewald, M. & Pohoryles, R. J. (2016). Privacy and Security in the Digital Age: Privacy in the Age of Super-Technologies. Routledge.

Honey, G. (2000). Electronic Access Control. Newnes

International Conference on Systems, Computing Sciences and Software Engineering, Sobh, T. M., & Elleithy, K. (2006). Advances in systems, computing sciences and software engineering: Proceedings of SCSS 2005. Dordrecht: Springer.

Kamila, N. K. (2016). Handbook of research on emerging perspectives in intelligent pattern recognition, analysis, and image processing.

Mueller, S., & Safari Tech Books Online. (2003). Upgrading and repairing pcs. Indianapolis, Ind: Que.

Oracle Application Server Portal: What is a portal? (2005). Retrieved from|welcport~htm/

Reveron, D. S. (2012). Cyberspace and national security: Threats, opportunities, and power in a virtual world. Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press.

RS2 Technologies. (2009). Integration in Access Control Systems Putting Together the Pieces of an Integrated Access Control System. Munster, IN: RS2 Technologies. Retrieved from

Sentry Security System Inc. (2016). Access Control Products. Retrieved from

Wells, Q. (2008). Guide to Digital Technology Integration. Cengage Learning

Whitman, M. E. & Mattord, H. J. (2010). Readings & Cases in Information Security: Law & Ethics. Cengage Learning.