NEW SYSTEM USES LEGACY CARDS: Access to Facility Controlled through Internet
December 1, 2007
Like many businesses in major metropolitan areas, telx -â€” a provider of Meet Me Room and core interconnection facility solutions â€” leases space in a multi-tenant building in New York City that is home to more than 30 technology and enterprise companies.
This arrangement poses a security concern for telx, because it must protect customers’ mission-critical Internet and telecommunications systems that reside at its facilities. The success of its customers’ businesses depends upon the safety and security of these systems.
telx’s network facilities deliver solutions for telecommunications carriers, ISPs, content providers and enterprise networks. The company occupies two suites in one of the largest buildings in Manhattan, which spans 2.8 million square feet and a full square block. This is one of more than a dozen telx locations nationwide.
Building management requires that tenant employees and visitors wear identification at all times and obtain proper clearance to enter the building. Anyone attempting to enter the building beyond the lobby must carry a proprietary access card provided by building management. Although this level of security is sufficient for some building tenants, telx needed an extra layer of protection.
The company turned to Global Systems Integrators, Elmsford, N.Y., for a solution that would ensure only authorized personnel can access its secure Meet Me Room and core interconnection facility.
“Building management did not want to provide us with information about its HID cards,” relates John DiMarco, senior vice president of operations for Global Systems Integrators.
So he recommended the browser-based Access Easy Controller from Bosch Security Systems Inc., Fairport. N.Y. This solution allows telx to use the buildings’ existing access cards and operate the access control system from any computer throughout the two facilities floors it leases.
“While this may have presented a challenge for some access control products, the Access Easy Controller read the building’s cards as unique data strings, enabling us to program the system to recognize them,” DiMarco explains
The employees of telx only have to present one card to gain access to the building and the secure rooms to which they have authorized right of entry, thereby making the system simple to use for employees.
“Because the system is browser-based, it is very easy to train the end user,” DiMarco maintains. “The time required for training telx was a fraction of what is normally required with other access control systems. With the intuitive interface, the telx employees were adding users and managing schedules after minimal instruction.”
telx can also generate reports from any Web browser, showing who has entered or attempted to access its secure Meet Me Room facilities.
“We must provide our customers with the greatest assurances that their communications equipment is protected,” emphasizes Chan Boodram, facilities manager for telx’s site. “This system gives us more control over access to our Meet Me Rooms, helping us better demonstrate the security of our facility.”
“While this installation only secured one area for telx, we knew the company planned to add access control to another facility on a different floor of the building,” DeMarco adds. “The system that we selected had to be able to handle this future expansion.
“By using a network-ready product, we’ll be able to use telx’s existing IP network and eliminate the need for additional wiring between the facilities,” he explains. “This design will keep costs down for telx and add convenience by giving them one centralized access control interface for all of their facilities.”
Sidebar: On the Job
- From Bosch Security Systems (www.boschsecurity.us): Access Easy Controller
- From HID (www.hidcorp.com): 6 HID Thinline II readers
- From Genesis Cable (www.genesiscable.com): 500 ft. of 22ga./6-conductor overall shield (OAS) cable; 500 ft. of 18/4 cable; 500 ft. of 18/2 cable
- From Altronix (www.altronix.com): 1 eight-output power supply with fire alarm input for emergency door release
- Two emergency bypass key switches to allow access to the equipment location in case of an emergency
- One siren installed in the security office to sound if and when the rear door is opened