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« BIM, Services, and Emergency Response | Emergency Response and Building Intelligence »
Sunday
Oct122008

Enterprise Interactions for Physical Security

So, as promised a week ago, here are some scenarios for physical security systems interacting with enterprise systems, and even through the enterprise to other enterprise-enabled buildings systems.

Hotels, Customer Service and Energy.

Hotels put a lot of effort into their customer relationship management. Building space, if well operated, cost the same in similar cities. Beds are beds, as long as they are clean. Hotels compete for customer loyalty to develop preferences that make the consumer check their hotel chain first rather than merely going to hotels.com.

The vision of Hotel Technology Next Generation (htng.org) includes rooms that respond automatically to the customers preferences. These could be warm, cool, or even green with a carbon units saved report printed on the room-check-out.

A proximity chip on the hotel’s room key could allow a guest easy keyless entry to the lobby late at night. The security system could alert the enterprise of the guest’s arrival, and notify the room to prepare the environment the guest likes. Put the same proximity chip on the guest’s frequent customer card, and the front desk could be alerted for expedited check-in. The regular guest could even receive an instant text message on his phone, sending him directly to his room without check-in. The guest’s arrival could notify hospitality services to deliver the guest’s favorite martini or late-night hot chocolate directly to the room within minutes of arrival.

Commercial Maintenance and Federated Identity Management

Commercial building owners face several additional expenses above and beyond repair bills, when a mechanical system needs maintenance. Someone must be tasked to wait around for the repair man. They then let them in to the normally secure areas where the mechanical systems are installed. They may wait around to verify the actual hours on-site by the expensive repair personnel.

With enterprise interaction and federated identity management, the service personnel could gain direct access to the secure areas using their own company badge and their time on site could be tracked automatically.

When the owner and the service organization establish a contract, they would set up the identity federation. The access control system would then refer the security token of the service technician to the service organization for authentication. The authentication process would be the same whether the identity token was merely the badge or biometric data exchanged by the BIAS (Biometric Identity Assurance Services) standard. We now know who the service technician is.

Authorization would involve business processes in both organizations. The owner’s system knows that a service issue exists one the equipment and that the service order has been issued. The service provider knows which technician is assigned to that work order, and can pass the work order back with the authentication. While the work order is open, the technician can be admitted and his comings and goings tracked.

I will add more scenarios soon, including emergency management. Until then, remember that security is not about locking the door; security is about using situation awareness to respond the right way at the right time.

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