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Report available on US access control market

Frost And Sullivan : 25 September, 2008  (New Product)
Report from Frost and Sullivan shows physical security in North America remains high on the agenda with strong forecasts over the next 6 years
Terrorism and escalating security threat perceptions have had huge ramifications on the security environment in North America, bringing vigour into the security surveillance market. Demand has escalated with the pressing need to protect critical infrastructures as well as commercial establishments from threats such as vandalism, break-ins, and business espionage. Until recently, access control systems were the sole domain of critical infrastructures such as government agencies and large corporate establishments, but today, both large and small enterprises use highly sophisticated access control systems.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, North American Physical Access Control Systems Market, finds that the market earned revenues of over $307.6 million in 2007 and estimates this to reach $1.31 billion in 2014.

"The future of security is in the access control market with implementations for both physical and logical access," says Frost & Sullivan Industry Analyst George Paul. "Moving forward, access control systems would be a basic requirement for security, just as passwords and mechanical locks are the norm at present."

With the increasing development of sophisticated and high-value products to suit various requirements, a vast repertoire of surveillance systems exist on the market. The electronic access control systems market has positively moved from the introduction stage to the growth stage. New access systems enable convergence with other sub systems for the formation of a completely integrated system. The potential for growth is high because the traditional mechanical locks and passwords are being substituted by advanced authentication technologies such as smart cards and biometrics. These new technologies would ultimately replace proximity cards, which at present have the largest market share.

Poor understanding of the newer technologies among end users, traditional security integrators, and security consultants constrains the development of the market. The confusion takes a step further with the transition to Internet Protocol (IP).

"Communications in the newer systems are supported by IT networks with control systems being hosted by application servers," notes Paul. "This shift in associated technology from analog to IP has left the traditional security market still in the learning phase, which is slowing down the uptake."

As technology itself is not a challenge, the market will automatically achieve forward momentum when it fully comprehends all the nuances of the benefits and limitations. The other roadblock is the lack of standards among manufacturers that prevents the integration of these systems to a more unified and larger security management system.

Standardisation remains a crucial challenge, but the adoption of IT standards for IP access control and providing free software development kits for proprietary products can initiate the standardization process. Overall, the onus is on developers and manufacturers to impart training for all associated participants along the value chain, encompassing both large and small system integrators and end users.

Electronic access control systems have now pervaded the fabric of society and the market for security systems will continue on an upward trajectory. The market expects to grow at a tremendous pace and transform the ability to access buildings and computer networks.
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