Simply defined, the term “access control” describes any technique used to control passage into or out of any area. The standard ‘Chubb’ style mortice lock that uses a key may be thought of as a simple form of an “access control system”.
Over the years and decades, access control systems have become more and more sophisticated as technology moves on. 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”, rather than a standard key to allow access into the defined secure area/s.
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 for example from an office area into a warehouse area.
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.