ISC West 2017 Coverage: Access Control Moves ASSA ABLOY into Future Proofing

April 6, 2017
Innovative roadmaps for technology deployments drive new vision of what defines access control

Las Vegas - For Martin Huddart, President of ASSA ABLOY’s Access and Egress Hardware Group, assessing the performance of access control technology is not just about security. His company is currently focusing on what he calls ECCO EAC that entails developing security products -- things like maglocks, power supplies, and electronic locks -- that consume typically 90 percent less energy than their predecessors. The end game for ASSA ABLOY and its partner is to ensure that they are not only protecting buildings, but also protecting the planet.  Huddart calls this Phase One of the company’s ECCO future.

Phase Two, which he says is just beginning, revolves around harnessing energy like sunlight for solar locks or self-charging locks that can harness energy when people use them to open doors.

“Physical security has a slow and steady progression and manufacturers keep making those physical barriers better and better,” said Huddart at a Wednesday morning technology presentation at the ASSA ABLOY booth during the ISC West show in Las Vegas. “Connectivity and access control is not new. It has been around for 40 years, the way we typically secure an online access control opening with panels and devices linked to it. That industry is now moving to an architecture where you have smart devices connected to the edge of the network and are capable of controlling much more than just doors – things like cabinets and drawers.”

Huddart asserted that the expanding move to wireless technology will only increase because of the cost-effective nature of installing wireless versus running cable. “We are now living in a world of standard wireless technologies like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth that vendors are using to secure their doors. Those wireless technologies are generally sitting in a building on a hub that you install as the building owner. As we look into the future it’s probable that low power wireless service is more likely to be provided by a carrier outside the building that will be transmitting wireless as a community service much like cellphone service is today.”

In that same vein,  ASSA ABLOY also announced at ISC West the integration of their IP-enabled PoE (Power over Ethernet) and Wi-Fi access control locks with Millennium Group’s Ultra browser-based access control platform. 

The integration with Millennium Ultra offers integrators even greater flexibility to provide comprehensive security management tailored to the specific needs of a facility. The range of IP-enabled locks from ASSA ABLOY Group brands Corbin Russwin and Sargent utilize a facility’s existing IT infrastructure to enable access control at a fraction of the cost. PoE locks use a single Ethernet cable for both power and data, and Wi-Fi locks connect to the access control system through an 802.11b/g/n WiFi network. Both solutions simplify installation and significantly reduce costs and components.  

Millennium Ultra is designed with a highly scalable architecture capable of supporting sites from one door to thousands of doors across multiple campuses. It can be customized for any business environment allowing easy, intuitive access to complex functionality. 

“The integration of our IP-enabled technology will further enhance the scalability and breadth of the Millennium Ultra platform. The combined solution offers a new level of ease – for both installation and management,” Huddart said.

The ECCO EAC roadmap and the Millennium Ultra platform highlight the diversity of offering of which Huddart is excited about. 

“We make a myriad of products at ASSA ABLOY that cover a lot of technologies. One that we have talked about the least is something we call the “intelligent opening.” This takes us to where door openings are going in the future and that leads us to insight. Insight is being able to leverage the data that comes from this world we call the Internet of Things, that includes door locks, and figuring out how we can interpret and use the data that is being gathered,” said Huddart.

Huddart added that one of the issues facing the security industry is the staggering amount of data that is being generated. “The volume of data thrown at us is sometimes overwhelming. A recent article in an industry magazine quoted an expert who said that more than 50 percent of security events are missed or ignored just because of the sheer complexity of the data received. So how do you avoid this?”

One way, according to Huddart, is you must start thinking about the data being the product as much as the lock being the product. When you do that it drives the point that you might want to start thinking differently about buying security.

“In the past, we’ve always bought bundles of equipment that was a capital purchase. But more and more, security is moving from a capital purchase to an operating expense where we are leasing rather than buying,” explained Huddart. “Just like our Accentra Solution from Yale which is a multiple family lock management system that manages access of multi-family dwellers into their buildings. We don’t sell the software on a disk anymore for this solution but sell it as a service that is hosted in the cloud. We are driving these locks and access points from the cloud that you pay for on an ongoing basis.”

About the Author:

Steve Lasky is the Editorial Director of SouthComm Security Media and a 30-year veteran of the security industry.