Cards & Card Readers

Cards & Card Readers

Card readers are not just for debit and credit cards but are some of the best examples of hardware for access control. Unlike those traditionally recognized for transactions, these cards and card readers are either proximity or magnetic based. Furthermore, they prove easily effective when integrated with a more extensive security system with surveillance and alarms. As a result, companies with cards and card readers can efficiently conduct business on a daily basis and never worry about unauthorized individuals accessing areas you want to be restricted. 


Hikvision, Geovision, LTS Security, Bosch, Dahua, Aiphone, AXIS, Ubiquiti, Mobotix, ACTi, and Verkada offer products through A1 Security Cameras!

How do card readers work?

As mentioned above, cards and card readers for access control are either proximity or magnetic based. Proximity cards and card readers work by way of the card reader emitting an energy field that interacts with specific cards or key FOBs, powering a chip that sends out a signal meant to match with the system it is designed for. The internal chip may have a specific code, information on the employee, or more information needed depending on how sophisticated the access control system is.

Alternatively, magnetic cards and card readers work somewhat differently. The magnetic card readers emit a magnetic field that is sensitive to changes made to incoming objects or that is swiped through a slot. In this case, the card features a specific magnet or internal makeup that responds accordingly to the card reader and allows for access based on that.

What is a smart card reader?

When used in access control, smart card readers are a sophisticated development that bases interaction off of more than one technology in a given card. Essentially, smart cards and smart card readers combine proximity and magnetic technology into one. This allows for more specific information to be applied to each employee, providing restrictions on an individual basis.

Do you need WiFi for a card reader?

While there are WiFi-enabled cards and card readers, A1 Security Cameras recommends companies hardwire each reader for security purposes. Simply put, WiFi systems are subject to both security risks and problems having to do with connectivity. For example, criminals will use jammers to disable wireless devices around them and that can include security. Some card readers may disengage when disconnected, depending on the product. While there are ways around hardwired card readers, there are fewer tools criminals can use to attack access control in a given business.

Are all card readers the same?

As shown above, not all card readers are the same and that also most certainly applies to the cards used with them as well. There are magnetic, proximity, and smart card readers that provide access control in a given location an edge for businesses. Furthermore, these devices are fundamentally designed differently from those used in retail, which are specifically designed to work with credit and debit cards.

Why should I use a card reader?

A card reader in access control provides you with enhanced security when you want to restrict entry to those you trust. This type of hardware can be applied to each entrance internally and externally, meaning when you want a specific room to be accessible to a specific few, you can do exactly that. While straightforward in function and design, these products can be an excellent addition to any given business!

When you need to secure your business, trust our team to design a surveillance and security system perfect for you through our system design service. Our team is ready to provide you with an extensive surveillance system design that uses the products we offer here like cards and card readers. Contact us today to learn more about our services and products!