Post COVID-19 Occupant Access and Building Security

July 23, 2021

With the return of people to buildings after the COVID19 period, a new way of thinking will need to be adopted to ensure building access control systems align to occupant health while continuing to maintain building security. Adaptations and enhancements to security technology will play a key role in how we maintain and manage the balance between a safe and healthy environment and still maintaining a secure building.

Contactless technology interfaces will enable a higher standard of hygiene. Minimal interaction with contact surfaces will inhibit disease transmission and reduce the need to continually clean surfaces.

Contactless Security Technology

Advances in system and platform technology enable a layered approach in assuring contactless building security. This adaptable and scalable approach to technology implementation is a cost effective way to implement change and provide benefits to occupants. A range of technologies can be considered that either restrict access or provide access in a contactless environment.

Occupancy Counting and Spatial Tenancy Control Systems:

Occupancy Counting and Spatial Tenancy Control Systems allow for the management and control of environments where large numbers of individuals may congregate, such as entrance foyers. Using cameras, pre-defined occupancy numbers can be programmed into the system allowing the platform to count and effectively manage the movement of how many individuals enter and leave a space.

Once the system detects full capacity thresholds it provides an alert via a traffic light style monitor display. The system can also be interfaced into auto entry doors or speedstyles to control accessibility into the defined space until spatial capacity threshold has been reduced to an acceptable level.

Closed Circuit Television System Analytics

CCTV analytics is an application tool that can be applied to existing IP (Internet Protocol) Digital CCTV platforms.

By utilising strategically positioned cameras within a facility or building, camera images can be synchronised through an onboard analytic algorithm process to provide information for system intelligence. This can identify and highlight occupant behaviours, such as repetitive coughing.

Thermal Body Detection

This technology senses changes in a person’s body temperature and can raise a warning. However, medical advice raises doubts around the reliability and validity of thermal detection because of the way COVID-19 is believed to adapt within the human body. As such, there are concerns about the effectiveness of Thermal Body Detection technology as a primary or deciding indicator to the presence of COVID-19.


Advancements in technology has allowed Biometrics to be seamlessly introduced into access control platforms like that of facial recognition. Contactless hand scanners for example can be interfaced to allow an authorised individual to operate an associated access control point without any direct surface contact of their body.

Facial Recognition

Specific details of an individual’s facial features are captured and stored on a data base allowing for either a biometrics platform or a IP Digital CCTV system, utilising an analytic application to process access authorisation by matching the facial features of the individual against those stored within the system data base.

Blue Tooth Connectivity

Utilising blue tooth technology on smart phones offers the ability to operate access control points. An electronic authenticity certificate is loaded onto an individual’s smart phone. When the phone is presented to a blue tooth formatted reader, authority access rights are processed, and access is granted.

Harnessing Contactless Technology within Electronic
Security Infrastructure

In many cases existing security systems and platforms can be adapted to incorporate the benefits of contactless technology. Key steps to the cost-effective implementation of contactless technologies to support occupant health and hygiene include:

Identify, Review and Monitor of entry and exit locations, lift foyers, reception area, areas of potential spatial gathering.

Establishing a protocol aligned to the Social Distancing requirements for these locations. 

Implement Occupancy Control and Spatial Monitoring platforms.

Review and Upgrade existing CCTV and access control Infrastructure to support contactless technology.

For further advice and assistance with contactless building access and security systems please contact:

Darian Mozley
Leader – Security (NSW/ACT), A.G. Coombs Advisory
P:  +61 3 9248 2700   E:

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