In light of pervasive security threats across virtual and physical environments, enterprises are trying to find ways to protect their assets.
Because contactless ID badges can protect data, as well as communicate with terminals to exchange information, it's not surprising that organisations are turning to this technology. ReportsnReports.com estimated that the market for contactless smart cards will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 30.31 per cent over the next four years.
What makes them so secure?
Smart cards come with embedded chips, enabling them to manipulate data based on pre-defined requirements. For the most part, the chips are programmed to decrypt and encrypt data, thus increasing their ability to protect information.
This functionality is the basis of authentication. Suppose an employee is trying to gain access to a secured facility. When he or she places his or her ID badge to the reader, the smart card's chip ensures that the reader – and any programs connected to the device – are authorised to receive and deliver information to the badge. It's a huge advantage, especially for IT specialists concerned with logical security.
In addition, smart cards can store biometric data. Whenever personnel try to enter a room that requires fingerprint approval, staff members will have to apply their smart cards to the reader first. Then, personnel have to touch their fingerprints to the pad, which confirms matches.
Integrating them into the enterprise
Simply purchasing an ID card printer and issuing badges to employees won't allow businesses to automatically improve their security. Research group SANS Institute maintained that organisations must develop and integrate card management systems, public key infrastructures (PKI) and facility access solutions.
While allowing these different assets to communicate with one another, the administrators in charge of overseeing the project should implement protocols associated with the smart cards, some of which are listed below:
- Usage: Make ID badges mandatory for all employees, and dictate how workers will use these cards. Detail the required process for locking and replacing forgotten badges.
- Assignment and revocation: Determine which department will handle card issuance, certificate registration and revocations (if necessary). Typically, IT professionals are best suited for such responsibilities.
- Replacement: In the event a card is lost or stolen, enterprises must have a system in place to maintain the integrity of both computer networks and physical facilities. This protocol must also tie into how companies should reissue cards to employees if such events occur.
Integrating smart cards into the business requires thorough assessment of the infrastructure. If needed, enterprises should seek assistance from ID badge printer developers for guidance on best practices.