The access control market is growing at a fast rate driven by increasing crime rates, technological advancements and increasing use of IoT-based systems, wireless technology and cloud computing in security systems. In the coming years, the market will benefit from huge growth opportunities as a result of increasing urbanisation, the transition to ACaaS or access control as a service and smartphone-based access control trends.
What is access control?
Access control refers to methods used to limit or regulate access to physical or virtual assets or resources. In the virtual world, access control refers to a process where users gain certain privileges and access to systems, information, or resources.
In these systems, users need to present their credentials to be granted access. These credentials can be in many forms.
Access control trends in 2020
Cloud-based solutions: According to a 2019 study, trending access control solutions are cloud-based and video management systems. Each fob controller, access card, technology upgrade and calendar permission is integrated through cloud security, which makes secure access changes globally scalable and mobile-friendly. New doors, users, or offices can be added any time to the system for greater convenience with the advantages of automatic software updates, quicker installation time, mobility, flexibility and increased cybersecurity.
Wireless technology: Wireless access control uses wireless radio signals to send data to control panels. Wireless intrusion detection systems alert the administrator in case of a wireless network security breach.
Attribute-Based Access Control:. Unlike role-based access control (RBAC) that has been traditionally used; in attribute-based access control, also called policy-based access control, access control paradigm is defined where access is granted through policies that combine attributes. Different attributes such as environment attributes (time, location, date and day), user attributes (employee position, IP address, department, clearance level, and so on), object (type, sensitivity, creator, required clearance level, and so on), resource attributes and type of action (read, write, paste, copy, edit) can be used for granting access. Based on the Boolean logic, where “If, Then” statements are used, ABAC sets access based on who is making the access request, the type of access and the action. For instance, if the requester of access is a senior manager, then allow editing access to protected data.
The RBAC employed pre-defined roles that were assigned pre-determined privileges. However, with ABAC, the key difference is that policies expressing a complex Boolean rule can be used with different attributes.
Dynamic access control with ABAC provides more visibility and control while allowing users to grant or deny access based on multiple factors. One of the key access control trends in 2020, according to Gartner, relates to increasing adoption of attribute-based access control (ABAC) for critical assets’ protection.
Biometrics access control: Biometrics access control systems restrict physical entry to authorised users. As one of the most important technological breakthroughs that have impacted the access control industry, biometric access control is continuing to become more influential. Given the reduced costs of maintenance, absence of the need for credentials or ID cards that can be replicated or lost, biometric access control has found wide adoption. As technology advances, access control readers may also evolve to be able to recognize finger veins, the patterns of veins in eyes or the fingers, or blood capillaries in a retinal scan.
A 2019 report by MarketsandMarkets™ highlights that the biometric segment will grow between 2018 and 2024 at the highest compound annual growth rate (CAGR).
The market trend for this type of access control system is dominated by hand geometry recognition, fingerprint recognition, face recognition and iris recognition.
Facial recognition: Facial recognition is fast-gaining popularity as an access control method. These solutions eliminate human errors to safeguard businesses against security breaches. Artificial intelligence and machine learning integration have led to the rapid evolution of facial recognition technology.
A face recognition software, for example, evolves by leveraging ‘deep learning’ and AI without any external updates. Such systems use infrared light to read faces and are strengthened by sophisticated AI to ensure accuracy, speed and reliability.
Voice recognition: The unique voice tone of each individual is as unique as their face, eyes, or fingerprints. Sophisticated voice recognition tools identify idiosyncrasies in a person’s voice to grant access to critical services and assets. These systems compare voice patterns to sonic patterns stored on file.
Analytics and intelligence: Gartner had predicted in its 2014 study that for 60% of businesses, IAI (identity analytical and intelligence) tools will provide direct business value by 2020. This will include log management and behavioural attributes about what is being accessed and by whom.
Internet of Things (IoT): The Internet of Things has continued to be the key trend across industries over the past few years. Data collection and analysis from sensors has given rise to many applications, including event management, industrial applications and intelligent building management.
Mobile access control: Smartphones are increasingly being adapted for access control. With built-in biometric and functionality, mobile phones are amenable for identifying people for access control purposes instead of easy-to-lose PIN code, badge, or ID card.
Smartphones are equipped with near-field communication (NFC) and Bluetooth, which can help in ensuring a secure connection with access control readers. As mobile phones have biometric fingerprint scan or password-enabled protection, multi-factor authentication is possible.
With the convenience and flexibility offered by smartphones, they are predicted to become key trends in access control in 2020.