Combining the Advantages of Mechanical and Electronic Keys and Locks into One System
Keys or Access Control? Why Not Both?
Lock and key security has come a long way since Ancient Egypt. Over the centuries, the Romans, the lever tumbler and Linus Yale’s pin tumbler all took the technology forward. Each was a significant milestone. But in truth, your average pharaoh would still recognize his clever gadget. The latest advances in key-based electronic access control, on the other hand, would send Rameses into a tailspin.
A mechatronic locking system like Cliq from Assa Abloy combines high-end mechanical and electronic protection. A range of key-operated mechanical cylinders and padlocks maximize physical security and attack resistance. The technology then layers encrypted, user-friendly electronic security on top – adding control and convenience without the need for wires: all the devices are wire-free. Power to operate the electronics comes from the battery inside every key.
And because it’s key based, the system offers a simple step up from mechanical security to powerful access control, with no change to existing door hardware. Smarter security, secure cloud-based interfaces, mobile endorsement and a more flexible workplace are within easy reach for any building.
No More Lock Changing
The Cliq system is trusted by organizations in all kinds of industries: recently, German supermarket chain REWE chose it for its newest warehouse in the north of Berlin. „With this system, we have great flexibility in the event a key is lost or if we want to make any changes. We can revoke the key‘s access entitlements by reprogramming the400 locking cylinders,“ explains Marc Haverkamp, Project Manager for the REWE Logistics Center.
In Sweden, Stockholm’s Vasamuseet upgraded their old mechanical system to electronic. Staff used to carry heavy key-chains with ten or more keys. Now facility managers can amend the access rights of everyone’s Cliq key at any time, even remotely. „Previously, the biggest problem was lost keys,“ says Michael Andrésen, Operations and Security Officer at the State Maritime Museums in Sweden. „Then the lock had to be replaced, which was expensive. Now a lost key’s access rights are simply removed, instantly, and it no longer opens any doors.“
The electronic locking system is also popular with public utilities because the cylinders and padlocks can handle extreme weather and secure almost any locking point, making it more adaptable than standard electronic access systems. It is also easy for Eau de Valence, a French water utility, to manage mechanical and electronic locks in the same installation: „The electronic and mechanical cylinders are managed by one and the same key,“ said Christophe Nublat, Head of Study and Works Division at Eau de Valence.
To combat the theft of valuable recyclable materials, Communauté d’Agglomération La Rochelle managers installed Cliq padlocks and cylinders at 13 dispersed waste reception centers and issued individually programmed keys to authorized staff. The impact was instant: „The number of burglaries has been reduced in a spectacular way,“ says Hervé Begaud at the Communauté d’Agglomération. „We used to report damage every week. Now, we have had a single, failed, attempt on a cylinder in the last 6 months.“ La Rochelle district administrators are impressed: they plan to extend Cliq access control to all critical municipal sites.
Bits that fit
Wherever you work, employees leave, keys get lost, and outdated devices with unreliable security are still in use throughout your premises. Yet the remedy to all these problems is not a „one-size-fits-all“ solution. There are Cliq extensions for all kinds of security needs, supplementing the easy, flexible access rights management and scheduling for keys, users and doors that comes with every installation. For small to medium-sized businesses, the aptly-named Go app supports managers in administering their access system on the move and in the cloud. Lost keys are easy to revoke via the app, designed to be easy enough for a non-specialist to operate. Even a pharaoh. In medium to large businesses, security managers can administer their system using the Cliq Web Manager via a standard web browser. The additional option to operate on a Software as a Service basis can help reduce IT infrastructure costs. Data security is ensured, plus 24/7 monitoring and support are available on request. For managing a large business with remote sites or a mobile workforce (or both), Cliq Remote with Cliq Connect is the tailor-made solution.
App To Date
In Sweden, the Skellefteå Fire Service uses the Remote option. In the event of a fire, firefighters update their key at the station or on the move, using a key updater kept in each fire engine. There’s no longer any need for stations to hold and manage multiple sets of keys, or for off-site firefighters to first go to the station for the right key. A rapid response means more chance to prevent a fire from spreading. “With the key updater in each fire engine, we can authorize a key for a limited time. If we lose the key during an emergency, for example, it becomes useless after 60 minutes,“ says Skellefteå fire engineer Johan Marklund. „Previously, we had a key safe at every fire station,“ he adds. “At the main station alone there were about 100 keys. We had to take inventory regularly and sometimes found certain keys no longer worked. In a serious situation, we wouldn’t have been able to enter premises without breaking down the door. I recommend emergency services in other locations choose the same solution.“
The optional Connect app smooths mobile workflows. A key-holder no longer needs to update access rights in person, carry additional updating devices, or even return to base. All they need is a smartphone and the app. The app pairs a programmable key via Bluetooth and an encrypted cloud connection with the system‘s Web Manager. To change a key-holder’s access rights, a system admin accesses the web software from anywhere and updates their profile. The key-holder establishes a secure Bluetooth connection between their programmable Cliq Connect key and the app to instantly update permissions.
Assa Abloy sells and supports Cliq technology under several other brands including Ikon, Abloy, Mul-T-Lock, Assa, Vachette, Fab and Keso.