Author: kieran

The accessibility benefits of biometric access control cards vs traditional physical access control systems 

biometric access control

How S-Key’s biometric solution simplifies secure access for all 

Biometric access control cards allow you to check an individual’s identity before giving them access to your premises or systems. They provide strong two-factor authentication (2FA) straight out of the box: each person must present the right card with the right fingerprint for physical or logical access to the areas you have selected for that individual. 

More than this, S-Key’s fingerprint access control cards improve accessibility for your team. Introducing S-Key cards removes the frustrations of traditional physical access control systems, which can be poorly designed or implemented. 

Accessibility for real people

Access control systems are often designed with the perfect user in mind – but the functional abilities of your actual users may vary widely.  Eyesight ranges from perfect to none. Literacy and memory vary due to common conditions such as dyslexia, autism, dementia and stress. Physical ability may depend on mobility, dexterity, and fluctuating levels of pain. 

Staff or visitors using your premises may suffer from any or all of these difficulties, sometimes only temporarily. If you can make access control work better for them, you improve not only their sense of wellbeing but also their experience of your business.

Your accessibility obligations 

Accessibility is a legal requirement for both private and public sector organisations in the UK. At least one in five people in the UK have a long-term illness, impairment or disability. Accessibility at work is about removing barriers to help people take an active part in working life. Employers should ensure their workplace and how they work are accessible to as many people as possible. This is on top of the legal requirement to make reasonable adjustments for disabled staff and job applicants. 

An even greater number of your staff or visitors will experience occasional or less serious difficulties when using traditional cards requiring authentication by PIN or password.  

You must do what you can to make your services accessible so that everyone can use them equally.  

Accessibility in physical access control 

Access control systems requiring authentication by password or PIN can lack accessibility. S-Key access cards use biometric authentication by fingerprint, so do not need any other form of authentication by the user. 

So, let’s look at the accessibility issues that arise with traditional PIN or password entry systems, and see how S-Key fingerprint authentication provides the solution. 

Difficulty reading access screen  

Whether due to bright sunshine, screen damage or eyesight difficulties, reading on-screen prompts and instructions can prove difficult, especially for visitors or those unfamiliar with your access control system. 

S-Key fingerprint access control cards remove the need to read a screen. Simply placing the correct finger on your user card and holding it near the card reader will grant you access to your authorised areas, whether this is physical spaces or logical access to software and other systems.  

Unable to type entry password or PIN  

This may be due to physical issues (keypad digits illegible through use, or lack of dexterity) or simply difficulty remembering the password or PIN. In either case, S-Key cards solve the problem as no password or PIN is needed – just a fingerprint. 

Fear of infection 

Following the pandemic, society, in general, is more aware of the risk of contagion through touching objects such as keypads that are frequently touched by others. This is even more risky for those with compromised immune systems or caring responsibilities. We must make our workplaces accessible at minimum personal risk to individuals. 

S-Key biometric access control cards are completely contactless. The user touches only their card, holding it near to the reader to gain access. This contact-free access control system is an effective way to limit the exposure of users to infection or contamination.  

S-Key: the accessible access control solution 

Accessibility is important, not just because it is demanded by legislation. The more we can do to remove frustration or obstacles for other people, the better we make their lives. 

S-Key biometric access control cards improve accessibility for organisations by removing ‘pain points’ for the end user. The cards work with existing NFC / 13.56 MHz-based access control systems, are quick to set up and easy to use. 

S-Key cards are also cost-effective – and increasing accessibility is priceless. 

Call us now to set up a trial of S-Key fingerprint authenticated access control cards on +44 (0) 203 176 2350 or email info@freevolt.tech

The top 5 key risks facing security managers today

What might keep you up at night – and how to fix it!  

Is the security of your business in your hands? Do you lie awake at night worrying that unauthorised access to your organisation’s premises, data or vehicles could inflict financial and reputational damage? 

We asked Security Managers what key security risks they face in today’s challenging security environment. Understanding these top security issues is crucial to mitigating these risks with a simple solution: S-Key.  

Risk 1: Security cards in the wrong hands – how long do you have? 

Lost or stolen security credentials can easily allow access to unauthorised individuals. Whether your access control system uses physical keys, cards, fobs or other devices, they all present a security risk in the wrong hands. 

A lost card can easily be picked up on your premises and used immediately to gain access. If lost outside the premises, or stolen, it might bear sufficient detail to allow another person to locate and enter the private physical or logical domain.  

In either case, the risk of a security breach is immediate, but it may be hours or days before the authorised user realises and informs you that they no longer have their access key so you can disable their badge or card. 

How to mitigate this risk 

Two-factor authentication, such as via PIN, is critical to protecting your organisation from this risk. By adding an extra security layer, you improve the chances that only the authorised user will be able to gain access. The stronger this authentication, the better the security protection.  

Risk 2: How secure is 2-Factor authentication by PIN or password? 

Requiring authorised individuals to authenticate their presence by providing an additional detail (such as a password or PIN) strengthens your access control. Another person would have to copy or guess these details to gain access. 

Unfortunately, human beings are not perfect. We write down our PINs to help us remember them; use a password that is easy to guess, or even write it on the card for safekeeping. It can be easy for a malign individual to find out this ‘private’ information, thus gaining access to what you thought was secure. 

How to mitigate this risk 

The solution is a robust second authentication factor. Today, we have the capability to positively identify any individual using biometric data. Facial features and fingerprints have been shown to provide unequivocable proof of identification, and biometric authentication can now be used for high quality access security. 

Freevolt’s S-Key access control cards use fingerprint authentication, which means that only if the authorised user is physically touching the right card, with the correct finger, will access be granted. S-Key cards can be used for physical or logical access control (e.g. for buildings or for digital access) and provide a smart, safe and secure solution. 

Risk 3: Your ‘helpful’ employees unwittingly increasing security risks 

Human beings are also friendly and helpful, willing to help each other out. In security terms this could be an access control nightmare! 

Your current access control system may only authorise trained individuals to use dangerous vehicles or equipment, or give specified groups higher levels of security clearance. However, staff might lend or share their security badge (and PIN) with a friend or colleague who has lost or forgotten their own, thinking they are being helpful.  

But what they are doing may expose the organisation to a huge security breach, or void insurance claims. Even a trusted worker accessing unauthorised areas might leave a confidential computer database open, or cause an accident with machinery they are not qualified to operate. The risks to the business can be far-reaching, especially when this means that the acts are uninsured. 

How to mitigate this risk 

The best way to ensure that staff do not share, lend or clone access control cards is to make them personal. By requiring positive ID every single time the card is used, access control cards using biometric authentication remove any pressure or option to share cards. 

Risk 4: The increased security challenges of hybrid working 

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, when colleagues routinely worked in shared premises, they got to know each other. Security guards could recognise familiar faces, and even the cleaners would be recognised by fellow employees: the risk of an unauthorised visitor going unchallenged was low. 

But now that much of the workforce is based at home, or hybrid working, many may not ever have met new recruits, so there is a danger that an intruder could go unchallenged.  

How to mitigate this risk 

An access control system with strong two-factor authentication is vital in this situation. Not only does this provide clear evidence of authorisation, but it reduces the pressure on your security team to spot an unfamiliar face which could lead to a breach in access control. 

S-Key access control cards are versatile enough to authorise any number of visitors to access different locations, or at different security levels. Through a simple set-up, each user can be allocated specified security clearances, and will simply be denied access if they try to go further. So, there’s no need to rely on personal recognition or habit: the right person, with the right card, gets the right access. 

Risk 5: The operational and financial risk of a physical security breach 

The financial risks of a breach in access control are enormous. IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach Report 2023 puts the average cost of a data breach in the UK at $4.21m.  

‘Stolen or compromised credentials’ is the second most prevalent attack vector in the report, responsible for 15% of the security breaches and ranking among the top four most costly type of incident. Breaches that started with stolen or compromised credentials also took the longest to resolve: on average nearly 11 months to identify and contain these data breaches. Compromised physical security (a breach in physical access control) accounted for 8% of data breaches, costing an average of $4.10m each. 

The financial costs of a breach in security are severe. Revenue and efficiency losses will accrue throughout the data breach lifecycle – the time elapsed between the first detection of the breach and its containment. Any breach in your access control can compromise personal or business data, including the exposure of private information for which you may have a legal liability to another party. A breach in physical access control may also breach Health & Safety regulations (for example through the unauthorised use of machinery) or infection control, further escalating costs and the risk of uninsured losses.  

On top of all this is the reputational damage and loss of goodwill that can have a lasting and often irreversible impact on your organisation. 

How to mitigate this risk 

There is a simple, cost-effective way to strengthen your physical access control: prioritise robust two-factor authentication. 

Knowing exactly who is entering your premises is vital for strong security. Require positive identification of every individual before they enter your physical space, and you eliminate the risk of anybody gaining access by borrowing or stealing a false ID. 

Freevolt Technology’s S-Key fingerprint access control cards provide strong 2FA that is quick and easy to set up, and delivers immediate, cost-effective and robust security. Not only can you limit precisely who goes where, you can also use the cards to track individual access, which helps quickly confirm movements in the event of any incidents. 

The Cost of a Data Breach report looked at the impact of 27 factors on the mean cost of a data breach. The biggest cost amplifiers were the complexity of the security system, and shortage of security skills. Yet S-Key fingerprint access control cards are simple to set up, easy to use and require no special security skills. 

Helping security managers sleep well 

Every single one of these Top 5 Security Risks can be effectively mitigated by adopting S-Key fingerprint authenticated access control cards.  

Whether you are a CEO, a Security Manager or Compliance Manager, IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach Report shares quantifiable evidence that helps you better manage your security investments, risk profile and strategic decision-making processes. The risks are clear, and can be mitigated through astute security control investment.  

S-Key biometric access control cards provide a cost-effective solution that is quick to adopt and work effectively with your existing 13.56 MHz card readers: invest today and you could be up and running with strong two-factor authentication across your premises within the week! 

Please get in touch if you would like to see S-Key fingerprint access control cards in action, or would like to set up a trial. Call us now to set up a trial on +44 (0) 203 176 2350 or email info@freevolt.tech

S-Key scoops Silver in the Security & Fire Excellence Awards 2023  

Freevolt Biometric Cards

Freevolt Technology’s innovative fingerprint access control card, S-Key, has won the Silver Award for Security Hardware Product Innovation of the Year, 2023 at the Security & Fire Excellence award ceremony, held earlier this month. 

Award for innovation and excellence in security 

Freevolt Biometric Cards

This Silver Award demonstrates the huge impression that S-Key’s biometric access control card made on the judges, and recognises the valuable innovation that Freevolt has brought to the security market. 

S-Key secures biometric access control through fingerprint authentication on a card powered by batteryless technology, which can be read by existing access control readers: a prize-winning example of innovation and excellence in security. 

Congratulations to winners of this hard-fought category, Axis Communications, and our thanks to the organisers and to IFSEC who generously sponsored this award. 

Award-winning biometric access control cards 

S-Key is rapidly becoming an international supplier of choice in physical access control, thanks to innovations which improve security through quick and easy biometric identification, dramatically reducing the risks of breach. Cards cannot be shared or copied, and lost cards present no security risk.  

Gonzalo de Gisbert, Head of Product and Business Development at S-Key, is delighted with the award: 

“It is fantastic to receive this Silver Award for innovation and excellence in security from leaders in the security industry. We are proud of the high level of security achieved through fingerprint authentication with S-Key biometric access control cards, and pleased to be able to offer this in a scalable, sustainable and cost-effective form. Thank you!” 

We’d love to share our award-winning fingerprint access control cards with you. Call us now to set up a trial on +44 (0) 203 176 2350 or email info@freevolt.tech. 

How on card biometrics deliver an enhanced access security solution

Freevolt Biometric Access Cards

Innovative solutions offer integration, scalability, and data protection alongside physical access control 

*This was first published in City Security Magazine’s December edition (p15)*

Freevolt Biometric Access CardsAccess control systems are evolving to deliver improved physical security alongside a host of other benefits for premises owners and security personnel. Innovations include the ability to provide bespoke levels of access to different people depending on their job; to offer scalability and easy integration; and even to simplify data protection.

Gonzalo de Gisbert, Head of Product and Business Development at Freevolt Technologies, looks at the role of biometric data in security innovations, and how the introduction of fingerprint authentication has boosted the role of smart cards in access control.

Biometric authentication

The ability to verify a person’s identity using biometrics has revolutionised access control, from passport control through to logical access on personal devices. Biometric authentication removes the risk of an unauthorised person gaining access – improving security and reducing the risk of costly financial and practical impacts from a security breach.

But using biometric identifiers to control access to organisations and their assets has so far proved difficult for several reasons, principally:

  • Biometric readers are expensive to buy and install
  • Few systems allow open integration, so vendor lock-in could prove costly
  • Data protection is an issue for any system which transmits biometric data, as this is a Special Category under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Innovation – fingerprint authentication on a card

One solution is a system that allows biometric data to be stored securely on an access card or badge, kept under an individual’s control, which can verify the presence of that individual to existing card readers. 

Freevolt’s innovative S-Key access control card does exactly that, using battery-less technology to power this extra layer of security. This removes the barriers to effective biometric authentication, providing simple and seamless integration with your existing systems. You can:

  • Introduce strong two-factor authentication for any part of your organisation, with cost-effective scalability (you pay only for the fingerprint card)
  • Establish a single access control system across different locations, even with varying hardware
  • Minimise data protection obligations by ensuring that the data never leaves the card.

A safe, secure and hygienic solution

Fingerprint access control cards can also keep personal data secure, as they do not transmit that information to the access control readers. It is important to ensure that any biometric system stores the individual’s fingerprint on the card securely, only revealing non-biometric information (e.g., the card’s ID) to the reader. By checking that your provider protects personal data in this way, you both improve the user’s personal security and reduce your obligations under data protection legislation.

Of course, fingerprint access control cards have the further advantage that the user need touch nothing but their own card. The pandemic showed us that the less we need to touch keypads, the lower our chances of contamination – and the better our chances of staying healthy for work!

Biometrics on mobile phones

Some companies are moving to biometric authentication (face recognition or fingerprints) via mobile devices to provide access control, mainly due to their convenience. But Gonzalo does not believe this provides effective access security:

“Mobile phones are under the control of their owner, who can add another person’s fingerprint or even resort to a PIN, thus completely negating proper authentication,” he says. “What happens if you run out of charge, or your workplace does not allow phones? A fingerprint-authenticated card which can easily be barred on your system is a much more secure method of access control.” 

It is clear that biometric authentication will play a huge role in the future of access control. By choosing wisely, you can enhance security without huge investment, and protect your teams too. 

For more information:

w: freevolt.tech/s-key/
e: info@freevolt.tech
t: +44 (0) 203 176 2350

Unlock savings with S-Key’s biometric access control solution 

Cost-effective, quick-start fingerprint authentication from Freevolt 

Two-factor authentication (2FA) is key to secure access control. In this blog, we look at how fingerprints provide a crucial second layer of authentication, and how S-Key’s innovative biometric access card solution is both cost-effective and easy to implement.   

Why do we need multi-factor authentication?

At the simplest level, physical access control can be provided by supplying authorised personnel with a door key. This key can take many forms: a traditional key; a fob or token; or a smart card or ‘badge’. It is risky because anyone finding, stealing or duplicating the key now has access to your premises. 

This is why an extra layer of authentication is increasingly demanded for security across a wide range of physical and logical systems. Requiring a person to provide something they have (a card or token) plus an extra layer of authentication, such as something they know (a password or PIN), makes it harder for unauthorised users to gain access. 

What does biometric authentication add to access control solutions? 

We know that passwords and PINs can be copied or shared, instantly negating the second layer of authentication. A new generation of biometric tools is rapidly gaining popularity in access control, thanks to the distinctive nature of biometric markers such as an individual’s face and fingerprints. Access control through biometric authentication is simple, quick and effective, as we have seen with the growing use of ePassports and face recognition for mobile devices. 

Fingerprint access control for every situation 

Freevolt Technologies has burst open the availability of biometrically authenticated access control to every organisation. Fingerprint technology is complex, and fingerprint authentication on a card requires additional power – so you might expect this solution to be expensive and come with a limited life. But with Freevolt’s innovative S-Key card, you pay for nothing but the card you use, and it lasts forever. 

Whether you are looking for physical access control to premises, logical access control to computers and systems, or even a way to ensure that only qualified, competent staff have access to dangerous machinery, S-Key’s secure two-factor authentication cards are quick and easy-to-introduce, and provide a highly cost-effective solution. 

Secure access control with no added infrastructure cost 

Freevolt has ensured that changing to a biometric access control demands no major investment. Biometric readers are expensive to buy and install – but S-Key’s fingerprint access control cards can be read by your existing 13.56 MHz card readers, so there’s no need to rip out and replace access hardware. For new installations, wide compatibility means you are free to adopt card readers that meet your budget. 

S-Key also future-proofs your access control, since its secure authentication system will be readable through generations of card readers. With open integration, there is no danger of vendor lock-in, and if you decide to introduce convergent systems (giving access to special equipment or data, for example) it is simple and quick to update the card. 

Low cost – just pay per card for full biometric authentication 

We know that organisations may have fluctuating security needs: temporary staff, visitors or experts will need varied physical access; staff training may change their clearance to operate vehicles; or outside advisors may require restricted access to your software systems. Freevolt makes this easy.  

With no need to upgrade your infrastructure, all that you pay for is the individual S-Key access control cards. Each of these can be quickly set up with bespoke access, useable only by the named person and revocable at any time. It’s a smart and cost-effective solution. 

Durable access control cards last for years 

Providing fingerprint authentication on a card requires extra energy, but Freevolt have cleverly found a way to capture this from the fields emitted by contactless card readers. Thanks to their innovative energy-harnessing technology, S-Key cards require no battery, so last much longer than traditional battery-powered cards which need regular replacement. 

In fact, Freevolt is so confident in the longevity of their fingerprint access control cards that they offer a Lifetime Warranty* on S-Key cards – there is no charge for replacements if they develop a fault outside of normal wear and tear. Given the card will last for many years, why not provide that peace of mind to its user, knowing that the card will continue to work time and time again. 

*Terms and Conditions apply 

Cost-effective access control trial 

With no installation costs, you can trial our biometric security cards alongside your existing systems. Introduce secure fingerprint authentication just for high-security personnel, or to control access to specified data: find out for yourself just how user-friendly this simple and secure system is in practice, at virtually no cost. 

Reduced set-up and maintenance costs 

S-Key’s biometric access control cards are simple to set up and require little technical maintenance or support. Users set up their fingerprint independently, so there is low input for your IT team, and the cards work right out of the box. 

Your support team will also be delighted that they no longer waste time re-setting passwords and PINs that have been lost or forgotten – some organisations report wasting hundreds of hours per year on this! 

Reduced GDPR and privacy concerns 

Freevolt’s access control cards never transmit fingerprint information – all personal data remains securely stored on the card under the user’s control. This greatly simplifies data protection systems and reporting for your organisation, again reducing overheads and saving costs. 

Protect against costly security breaches 

Probably your biggest cost saving lies in the best protection against breaches in access control. Physical security breaches can have devastating cost implications for any organisation. From the immediate operational impacts to revenue and reputational damage, the financial impact of failures in access control is severe.

By adding the extra security layer of biometric authentication, S-Key’s cards help protect you against fraud. They ensure that only verified individuals have access to your premises and systems, providing simple and cost-effective security. 

Fingerprint authenticated access control cards linked to key machinery and vehicles, for example, will also reduce the risk of staff sharing cards to use equipment for which they are not qualified. Non-compliance with Health & Safety systems carries the risk of uninsured damage and personal injury – a risk that can be effectively mitigated using S-Key access control. 

Cost-effective access control solutions from S-Key 

By allowing access only when the authorised person is present, fingerprint-authenticated cards can help protect against breaches of both physical and logical security systems. With low investment cost, low running costs and strong security, S-Key’s biometric access control card is a cost-effective and enduring solution. 

Contact us now for an evaluation card to trial our innovative, secure and sustainable access control system – call +44 (0)203 176 2350 or email info@freevolt.tech

S-Key wins ‘Material Handling Solution of the Year’ 

Freevolt’s biometric access control card crowned at Industrial Plant & Equipment Awards 

Freevolt Technologies is delighted to announce that our biometric access control card ‘S-Key’ has won the ‘Material Handling Solution of the Year’ in the Industrial Plant & Equipment Awards 2023. The Award recognises the innovative role that fingerprint-authenticated access control can play in ensuring the safe operation of industrial vehicles and machinery: S-Key can eliminate the risk of staff sharing cards, causing health and safety issues as well as damage. 

Award for exceptional products used in the warehouse and logistics sector 

Industrial Plant & Equipment magazine introduced the ‘Material Handling Solution of the Year’ award to recognise exceptional products for use throughout the material handling process. Judges looked at the latest developments to solve pain points for site managers, security officers and logistics operations across a range of industries. 

Awarding top ranking to S-Key, the judges recognised that biometric authentication not only provides secure access control for buildings, but can also be used to ensure plant and machinery are operated only by qualified and authorised personnel. 

“S-Key’s battery-less biometric access card is a great innovation,” said the judges. “It seems it would be easy to implement in controlling access to vehicles and/or machinery operations. Congratulations, S-Key!”  

Freevolt’s biometric authentication card ensures robust access control by requiring positive identification every time, preventing the sharing or borrowing of RFID or access cards. In the warehouse and logistics sector, S-Key cards are an effective way to ensure that only properly skilled and licensed users can gain access to vehicles and machinery, reducing the risks of accidents and uninsured damage. 

Excellence in UK industry 

The Awards celebrate excellence across the broad spectrum of UK industry. During the award ceremony it was clear that the judges valued the wide range of applications for Freevolt’s innovative solution, including physical and logical access control.  

Gonzalo de Gisbert, Head of Product and Business Development at Freevolt Technologies, is delighted to accept the award: 

“I am proud to see S-Key recognised in the Industrial Plant & Equipment Awards 2023 celebrating excellence across the broad spectrum of UK industry. Our fingerprint access control card has a wide range of applications, and it is great to see that the judges see it as an exceptional product in the warehouse and logistics sector.” 

“I hope this award will encourage people from a wide range of industries to trial our safe, secure access control card for physical or intelligent access control, including access to vehicles and machinery.” 

Contact us now for an evaluation card to trial our innovative, secure and sustainable access control system – call +44 (0) 203 176 2350 or email info@freevolt.tech

We’re a finalist in the Security & Fire Excellence Awards 2023!

S-Key selected for Security Hardware Product Innovation of the Year

Freevolt is delighted to announce that our S-Key innovative fingerprint access control card has been shortlisted by Security & Fire Excellence Awards for their Security Hardware Product Innovation of the Year, 2023.

Recognising innovation and excellence in security

The Security & Fire Excellence Awards recognise excellence in the field of security, highlighting businesses that improve safety and security in new and exciting ways.

Freevolt is shortlisted for its innovation in the field of biometric access control – launching the S-Key card with batteryless biometric authentication which can be read by existing access control readers, whilst protecting personal data. A true combination of innovation and excellence!

Improved security reduces risk of breach

Last year, compromised physical security resulting in a data breach cost the average business over $4m. By shortlisting Freevolt’s fingerprint access control card for this Security Excellence Award, the judges recognise that S-Key provides a simple, cost-effective solution: a way to significantly improve security and dramatically reduce these risks. 

Fingerprint authenticated access control enables businesses to improve security at a stroke, by requiring positive personal identification every time. Cards cannot be shared or copied, and lost cards present no security risk. S-Key cards offer a scalable, sustainable and safe improvement on standard 2-factor access control systems, and we are thrilled to be recognised for this innovation.

Security & Fire Excellence Awards

The Security & Fire Excellence Awards will take place on 4 December at JW Marriott Grosvenor House on Park Lane in London. We look forward to participating in the awards and sharing more about S-Key fingerprint access control cards with the best in the security industry.

Contact us now for an evaluation card to trial our innovative, secure and sustainable access control system – call +44 (0)203 1762350 or email info@freevolt.tech.

Case Study: Improving access security for a leading national law firm

S-Key’s biometric, fingerprint-activated, access solution adds a critical security layer for leading UK law firm Freeths LLP. 

Protecting confidential files and data is key for any law firm, where handling client data, both physically and digitally, is common practice. A robust access control system is vital where the risk of any failure in security measures, including those with two-factor authentication, could have severe consequences. 

S-Key’s fingerprint-activated biometric access control cards improved security at this law firm at low cost, requiring the replacement of only the access cards, and with extra benefits. 

The Issue: How to upgrade security using existing readers

Freeths uses an access control system for physical access control at their offices. Speed and convenience of access are important for employees, who are often in and out of client meetings. However, the firm is keen to enhance security where possible, and in particular is concerned that cards alone can easily be lost or stolen, providing a potential breach in security.

Biometric fingerprint authentication provides an additional security layer which eliminates the risk of a fob being used by an unauthorised person.

Freeths was keen to evaluate how S-Key fingerprint-activated access control cards would work for them at one office, asking six key questions:

A white padlock on a bright green background

We already have an access system – what needs to change?

3 horizontal white lines on a bright green background

How long will it take for our lawyers to get set up?

Two white arrows pointing opposite directions on a bright green background

How convenient are the cards to use on a daily basis? 

2 White arrows which cross over each other on a bright green background

As lawyers, we know how vital data protection is. How is personal information handled? 

A white lightning bolt on a bright green background

What are the costs and is it scalable? 

A white tick mark on a bright green background

Can biometric access control cards be used for other areas such as secure printing or computer access? 

The Solution: biometric access control cards

Selected lawyers were given S-Key cards to be used across all entry and exit points at their office in Oxford.

All lawyers were swiftly enrolled and set-up using the company’s existing access card reader infrastructure. 

“The process was extremely fast and straightforward, it would be familiar to anyone who has used the fingerprint reader on a smartphone, for example. It was reassuring to know that our details were stored securely on the card itself, and that we didn’t have to make any changes to the rest of our access control systems, to link up additional databases or reconfigure our readers.”

Freeths, Oxford

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    WEBINAR: Biometric access control: are fingerprint cards the future? 

    To watch the ‘Security Matters’ webinar with S-Key alongside legal and security experts click here.

    Breaches in physical and logical access control are becoming mhttps://events.streamgo.live/biometric-access-control-are-fingerprint-cards-the-future/live?ore frequent, costly and damaging. Now that biometric authentication is an accepted means of identification, can fingerprint access cards cut the risks of breach and improve security? 

    Gonzalo de Gisbert, Head of Product and Business Development at Freevolt Technologies, Graham Evans, Chief Technical Officer at the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) and Will Richmond-Coggan, a partner at Freeths Law Firm, took part in a popular webinar this week for Security Matters Magazine, a key resource for security and risk management professionals. 

    To watch the webinar in full and learn more about biometric access control solutions and how S-Key’s fingerprint access cards work in practice, head over to the webinar recording at Security Matters Magazine

    Useful webinar on biometric access control 

    Over 500 people signed up for the webinar, presented by Brian Sims (Editor of Security Matters) with experts in security and legal data control. Key questions included:

    1. What are the security benefits of biometric access control?
    2. What are the pros and cons of different forms of biometric access technology?
    3. Where are personal biometric details stored, and what are the implications for company GDPR compliance?
    4. How do biometric access cards work in practice, and what are the costs of adoption?

    Biometric access technology 

    Gonzalo explained the growing need for strong two-factor authentication in any access control system, and the benefits of using biometric identification to ensure that only the authorised person can gain access. 

    Whilst biometric technology can be installed as wall readers, on personal devices such as mobile phones, or on dedicated cards, Gonzalo showed that on-card biometric authentication is currently the most flexible and effective solution.

    Expert lawyer says S-Key’s access control solution simplifies data control 

    S-Key was joined in the webinar by lawyer Will Richmond-Coggan, a partner at Freeths, who advised on the potential risks for an organisation in holding and using biometric data, under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). 

    Where biometric personal data is used for identification, this falls into a special category imposing particular obligations on the person using that data, which can be onerous. S-Key’s solution removes this added burden by ensuring that the biometric identity function is carried out exclusively on the card itself, so that the data is never accessible to the organisation or from its systems. 

    As Will notes, S-Key’s solution “gives all the convenience of fingerprint-enabled access control, but without the headaches that go along with that.”

    Security expert confirms personal data is secure on S-Key access control cards 

    Expert in data compliance, access control, biometrics and cyber security Graham Evans reinforced this view. Graham is Technical Officer at the British Security Industry Association and stated that S-Key’s on-card fingerprint storage and encryption is “from a data protection standpoint very secure.”

    The trial showed law firm the benefits of S-Key fingerprint access cards 

    Freeths has trialled the S-Key access control system and found it to be a great improvement on their existing fob access control. As Will Richmond-Coggan shared in the webinar, it was quick to set up and they used the fingerprint access control cards alongside existing systems at one of their 13 UK sites, allowing graduated access for different users without the need to invest in infrastructure.

    “What is striking about the S-Key solution is that it is one we could be confident about rolling out across all our venues… rather than having to have something bespoke to each environment, so we could standardise our approach to access control even across a multi-site setting.”

    Biometric access control cards: the future is fingerprints 

    This Security Matters webinar explored how biometric access control adds a robust security layer to access control, and showed that it can be cost-efficient and sustainable. 

    To watch the webinar please click here.

    Contact us now for an evaluation card to trial our innovative, secure and sustainable access control system – call +44 (0)203 1762350 or email info@freevolt.tech.

    Improving vehicle access control using biometric cards 

    How do you ensure that vehicles used in logistics, warehousing and manufacturing environments are secure and only used by trained and authorised employees?

    No shared keys, no chance of untrained users getting access to your vehicles – S-Key fingerprint access cards give you total and traceable control over vehicle security.

    The cost of allowing vehicle access to the wrong person

    Vehicles used in logistics, warehousing and production environments are a significant investment for your business. The acquisition, maintenance and operation costs of trucks, forklifts, fleet and other vehicles demand safe and efficient use.

    Without proper vehicle access control, you risk an unauthorised operative using your workplace vehicles. This incurs:

    • Risk of damage to the vehicle
    • Risk of damage to property, including customer property
    • Risk of personal injury to themselves or others

    These risks can lead to: 

    • High and uninsured costs for your organisation 
    • Penalties for breaches in Health & Safety and other regulations
    • An immediate operational impact on your business 
    • Reputational damage

    Biometric vehicle access control

    Whatever the type of vehicle, vehicle access security is now possible using S-Key biometric access control cards. Our fingerprint-authenticated security cards are a simple solution, ensuring that only the authorised individual has access to specific vehicles.

    Biometric authentication relies on the unique characteristics of an individual’s fingerprints to verify their identity. It is a zero-trust model which requires the right person to be present every time, so removes at a stroke the risk of lost or stolen credentials.

    Fingerprint access control on a card

    S-Key biometric access control cards use fingerprints to authenticate vehicle access. The system is easy to set up: S-Key cards are quick to enrol in your access control system, and the authorised employee simply registers their fingerprint on their individual card. 

    If you already have access control hardware fitted to your vehicles, S-Key fingerprint access cards can be used right out of the box, as they communicate with a broad range of existing NFC (near field communication) / 13.56 MHz RFID devices.

    Many vehicle manufacturers are already incorporating card-reading devices into their products as a simple way to secure vehicle access. With S-Key, that protection level is immediately boosted with an additional security layer working seamlessly.

    The added benefits of biometric access control cards

    Fingerprint-authenticated vehicle access control cards also deliver extra benefits to your business:

    • Positive identification of the vehicle user means that only skilled, trained operatives have access – so health and safety requirements are met.
    • Access to the vehicles can be tracked, allowing accurate time and mobility data to be logged – helpful for payroll, efficiency modelling, fuel management and even the allocation of fault or damage.
    • The system is cost-effective to set up – freely connecting with existing NFC/13.56 MHz readers and a wide range of potential in-vehicle hardware. 
    • Fast, easy enrolment of authorised users onto your system, and minimal ongoing maintenance or replacement time or cost
    • Works with existing card printers, lanyards etc. as our biometric vehicle access control cards match usual card dimensions.
    • Contactless vehicle access control protects your workforce from potential exposure to germs and viruses on shared keys or PIN and password systems, keeping them healthy.

    Personal data protection

    Personal data never leaves the card and is not transferred. The user simply adds their fingerprint to their own card, where it is held secure – providing reassurance that their personal information is safe in their own hands. The only information communicated to the card reader is a simple confirmation or denial of access.

    This also simplifies privacy management and GDPR reporting for your organisation, because you do not store or use the biometric data.

    Simple and secure vehicle access control

    Unauthorised vehicle access can present a huge risk to any business. The S-Key biometric access control card provides a simple and secure solution.

    Our scalable system allows you to introduce fingerprint-activated access control to individual vehicles or whole fleets, giving you the ability to trial biometric access control or limit it to vehicles presenting the greatest risk.

    S-Key vehicle access security cards work hard for your business, allowing the tracking and allocating of vehicle use, and protecting your employees’ personal data. 

    Contact us now for an evaluation card to trial our innovative, secure and sustainable access control system – call +44 (0)203 1762350 or email info@freevolt.tech.