WEB EXCLUSIVE: Harnessing the Power of Multi-Technology Readers

This Web exclusive comes from Sarah Teske of XceedID Corporation

In this world of acquisitions, mergers, and multiple/remote office locations, large organizations often find themselves burdened by a hodge-podge mix of card and reader access control technologies. And to make matters worse, a monumental change in the security industry is hovering on the horizon: the inevitable transition from existing but outdated proximity card technology to new, dynamic smart card technology.

The global reach of this transition is undeniable: already much of Asia and Europe has adopted contactless smart technologies as the new standard for security, transportation and identity management systems. The question is no longer if or when smart technologies will reach North American shores – they already have. The real question is how to harness the power of those technologies.

Although both proximity and smart card reader systems utilize radio frequency technology, the latest smart card technology operates on a much higher frequency, allowing data to be communicated at much higher speeds and with increased security. It is important to note that traditional proximity readers offer no data security and relatively slow data transmission speeds. In contrast, contactless smart card technology provides data encryption and mutual authentication security with data transmission speeds 100 times faster than proximity technology. Upgrading to smart technology is a no-brainer. But how do we get there?

Enter the multi-technology reader. Housing both proximity and smart card technology in a single reader, multi-technology readers create an ideal transition pathway from proximity technology to smart card technology. Imagine all the nightmares that could have been spared during the DOS® to Windows® computing transition had there only been a machine that could function on both platforms at once!

Amazingly, multi-technology readers are very affordable (nearly the same price as single technology readers) and just as reliable and easy to install as the familiar proximity reader. They are compatible with virtually all existing access control system panels and can read multiple access card types simultaneously. The most common proximity cards in use today (HID Proximity® and GE/CASI ProxLite®) can all be read by an XceedID ISO-X® multi-technology reader, as well as industry-leading smart cards including MIFARE®, DESFire®, ISO-X® and HID iCLASS®.

Finally, the big choices – which card technologies to use and how quickly to upgrade your systems while staying within your budget – are back in your hands. Because multi-technology readers are so flexible, you can choose the card technology, or even multiple card technologies, you want to use. You can upgrade your systems one facility at a time or even one door at a time. You can make the transition to smart cards with all of your employees, a single department, or even just your executive staff. Multi-technology readers allow you to have blended reader populations and blended card populations for an indefinite period of time without compromising the functionality or reliability of your access control system. Suddenly, the daunting idea of upgrading your system doesn’t seem so overwhelming. It doesn’t have to break your budget or cripple your business because you don’t have to rip out and totally replace your access infrastructure all at once.

Why would anyone installing a new security system or performing a system upgrade choose anything other than a multi-technology prox/smart card reader? Whether you plan to continue using existing proximity cards or to migrate to smart cards in the future, multi-technology readers protect you from waking up one day to an obsolete system and the monumental budgetary, logistical and security crisis that presents.

Offering performance, security and unprecedented versatility, these products are truly today’s value leader and have become the new standard in reader technology.

Product or trade names mentioned herein may be registered trademarks of other companies, and are hereby acknowledged.