Now more than ever, knowing who has access to your building and your data is critical. Whether it is your online records, or your physical records, knowing who can view them is what is going to keep you and your business safe. For physical locations, you need to have a commercial security system for controlling access as a significant line of defense.
Importance of Access Control to Provide Security and Safety for Your Team
Having an open- door policy is not always a good thing. To help protect your business, your team, and your data, you need to have access control to your building. To get started with your access control plan, there are some steps you need to take.
Assess Your Current Threat Level
To start, you will need to consider what your current threat level is. This is not what you are currently doing to protect your property, but how likely you will be to experience crime or otherwise troublesome behavior. This involves asking questions like “what is valuable inside my business”, or “how is the crime activity in my area”. Once you have assessed your risk level, you can then see how much security you will need.
Determine Baseline Access
You need to also figure out the different levels of access in the building, including baseline access. Baseline access is your lowest form of access, used to describe visitors and those just come in and out of a basic area. For example, if you own a grocery store, those who come in to shop have baseline access. They cannot enter any back rooms or storage areas, but can enter without any need to verify their identity.
Create A Plan
You need to create a plan that will set up what you want your security staff to do when people enter the building. If there are areas excluded to other employees, you will also need to figure out who has access and how they will open the doors to get into those areas. The more thorough the plan, the better off you will be. Remember, you can also change things later, but try to cover all your bases as much as possible.
Establish Security Culture
It is important to make sure you do not just throw this new policy at your employees and then cross your fingers. You need to establish a familiarity with your employees when it comes to security to better incorporate it into your team’s culture.
This can be done through meetings, emails, and drills to make sure everyone is on the same page. There is also professional trailing that can be done if need be to better help your employees to grasp the changes that are occurring in the business.
Hand Out ID Cards
ID cards are perhaps the best way to verify someone’s identity and whether or not they are allowed into the building or a certain area. You can have a basic picture ID, or you can use more high- tech cards which can be scanned to allow you to unlock doors and gain access to an area. Consider how big your location is and what other security measures you have in place when deciding what you need for a card. If you have very sensitive materials inside, you will want more high tech cards.
Monitor Your Equipment
It isn’t just people you need to be paying attention to. You also need to watch your equipment and make sure nothing is being taken out that shouldn’t leave the building. If anything does, it should be documented and checked out, with a time for it to be back. This will allow you to also document who has the items, so you know who is responsible if something isn’t returned.
Do A Security Audit
Once everything has been implemented, you will need to do an audit to see how things are going. You should do the first one about a month after the new security plan has been in use. Make adjustments when necessary to better your access control plan and don’t be afraid to add to it. You should then do an audit one month after new plans have been implemented, and every six months after that.
By making it clear who is coming in, and why, there is less risk of someone coming in to do harm to your business or your team. Make sure you have a set rule of how to do things, and don’t skimp on having security at the front door.