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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Access Control for Police Stations

In recent years, many new police stations have been constructed as part of municipal safety complexes, complete with fire stations, for instance.

Although budgets have been slim in the current financial atmosphere, some law enforcement jurisdictions have been able to secure necessary federal and local grants that have been available for this construction.

Pictured above is a combination biometric and card access system, ideal for police stations.

But there are many police stations, especially in smaller jurisdictions, that haven’t had the opportunity to undergo these transformations for a variety of reasons, most common of which is funding.

Due to this, in many cases, facilities in these stations are severely outdated—facilities such as evidence rooms and armories.

Along with outdated evidence rooms and armories comes the fact that keys for the doors to these rooms may be floating around due to employees having left, misplacement of the keys, etc.  After all, it just makes sense that the older the room, the higher the chances there are extra keys out there unaccounted for.

So what’s the answer?  In two words:  Access Control.  Electronic access control systems actually.

The good news is that there are a variety of options for police stations.  We’ll talk about a few below.

Card or fob access.  Three principle components are needed to achieve this form of access control:  a credential (a card or fob), a card reader and an electric strike (lock) that releases when the credential is presented to the card reader. 

The credentials can be presented in proximity to the card reader to complete the transaction.  In this case they are commonly referred to as “prox” cards and readers.  Or another type allows them to be swiped and a magnetic stripe is read instead.

Biometrics.  This form of access control can be ideal for evidence rooms and armories.  It’s most effective because it is not possible for anyone else to use your credential if you lose it to gain access—your body’s characteristics are the credentials.  These include the iris, finger and palm prints, and more.

A positive aspect to having these two options available is that police don’t have to choose all of one type. 

There can be card readers set up throughout the facility in places such as at the entrance from the lobby into the control and dispatch rooms, in the holding area as well as at the back entrance.  And biometrics can then be used in the evidence room and the armory for a higher level of security and more accountability.

Please note that biometrics is not the only answer for evidence rooms and armories.  Card readers are quite appropriate as well.

Each one of these types of access control systems establishes the all-important audit trail.  This is a tremendous advantage over locks and keys.  Audit trails provide a story of who went where, and when.

If evidence turns up missing, and a card access system was in place, a report can be produced immediately.

So if your station is of a certain age where not only evidence and weapons may be compromised, but access may be insufficient to other areas of the facility, please consider an upgrade to an electronic access control system from traditional lock and keys.

Thanks for spending some time with us today.

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