Access Control Market Sees High Behavioral Changes

by Preeti S    May 20, 2015


In India, enterprises are yet to realize the ardent need for physical security in offices. HID Global, which has a complete solution of secure smart card IDs and credentials for physical and logical access control, says companies and individuals in India need to change their perception towards security. It feels the dire need to create awareness about how adoption of right technology can prevent crimes and data thefts.

HID has converged solutions for building and computer access, transit payment, cashless vending, biometrics and other applications. In an exclusive interaction with CXOtoday, Ranjit Nambiar, Director, India & SAARC, HID Global, talks about innovations in the access control market and HID’s focus areas.

Total market for Electronic Access Control System is expected to reach $16.3 billion by 2017. What are the factors contributing to the market growth?

Fundamentally, security awareness is increasing. Enterprises want better and higher security. Also, technology advancements have made deployment of solutions easier, thereby reducing complexities. Gradually, cost will also come down.

In Indian market, the prime driver of the market is time-attendance or workflow management, which can be generated using Access management. But in the US market, it is the security that drives the overall market.

Largely, awareness levels about new initiatives and adoption of technology are the same in India and the US. Where one differs is the process, documentation or execution of plan. In US, they are more compliant and detailed. 

What are the growth areas for HID in the next few years?

In India, it is difficult to pinpoint one area which is not growing. We have to figure out our own priorities and track where the biggest need is. Security is still in the ‘good to have stage’ and is yet to reach the ‘must to have’ stage. We are in a transition phase. The budgets around infrastructure and security are still not rationalized.

Currently, our focus is on optimizing services for the mid-market. We are looking at addressing this market. We are for regionalizing and localizing our product offering to the market base and meet the requirements. Customers aren’t asking for cheap products. But they are asking for a product which is appropriately priced for their market.

When we started thinking what can actually displace the card, we realized smartphone is a way of life. So, HID started looking at smartphone as the next-gen access control credential. We have developed smart cards and readers complaint for phones on Android or iPhone and Windows.  

Mobile phone is suitable for access control, as none wants to share their phone. HID is planning solutions in the wearable sector too.

What changes have you observed over years in the access control market?

As far as mobile phones are concerned the form factor is changing. People don’t want to carry cards or hang them around their necks. On other hand, people don’t consider mobile as intrusive or disciplinary or regimentary.  And if we can have access apps on mobiles, it will also address the issue of misuse. Today none wants to part with their phones. So, essentially we are seeing behavioural change, not technology change. Technology will by far remain the same whether we use the card or mobile.

How is HID leveraging the new-age technologies in different verticals?

As the Internet of Things picks up pace, secure identity becomes a prime concern in a connected world. As identity has to be connected, we have a huge play there.

Second, healthcare segment is a worldwide big market opportunity. Now with hospitals providing care at home, e-verification is emerging as a big opportunity. One needs to verify the identity of the caretaker and ensure the treatment offered is appropriate. Our solution offers a trusted tag which the service provider can use to validate the data collected anytime.

Our primary objective is into issuing, provisioning, managing and authenticating digital verification.  

Initially, HID was very strong in IT/ITeS and BFSI, in the past few years we are seeing a huge opportunity in telecom and oil and gas. Transport is also a growth area with emerging airports and metros across the country. 

 What innovations can we expect in physical access identity market?

In IT companies, security and workforce efficiency are very important. When employees are given access cards, there are chances of them being misused, as they can be handed over to anyone. So, now there are companies trying location-based authentication and integrating access control with the IT system. For example, if the person doesn’t log in to the system in 15-20 mins after making a biometric entry, the system will be locked. So, integration of physical access with IT is important.

Another innovation is integrating the access control with energy control mechanism.  Suppose five people enter a room, the systems will detect the number of people. So, when the room is empty exit, the lights will automatically switch off.