Leading Standards

One development helping move the industry forward is the rise and increasing acceptance of standards. A more secure successor to Wiegand, open supervised device protocol (OSDP), for example, has been around for a while but suddenly gained traction in the past year.

“It has taken that long for OSDP to gain momentum, but we have seen a big uptick in the last year to 18 months of people requesting OSDP information,” says Mercury’s Matt Barnette. “We have been supporting OSDP in our products for about 10 years, but in the beginning of 2018 there was an update to our panels to meet the new OSDP v1.2, which provides even higher levels of encryption.”

IST’s Christine Lanning says her company is working with one customer already whose needs were driven by OSDP. “We are in the process of forklifting an access control system. This is the first time we have seen a non-government customer ask about that.”

OSDP is just one standard or protocol trying to change the access control industry. The PSIA physical logical access interoperability (PLAI) spec is another, as is ONVIF, which began to look at the access control market in 2012 after having success in the video space. Its latest profile for access control, Profile A, was released over a year ago, but Bob Dolan, director of technology for security solutions for Anixter and a member of the ONVIF Technical Services Committee, acknowledges it is just a start. “We realize we have a long way to go to help the industry develop a full standard for access control.”

Tim Vahary, marketing and product manager for RS2, Munster, Ind., says standards are the future of the access control industry. “Standards such as PLAI, ONVIF, OSDP and BACnet have opened the door to being able to integrate a variety of different systems using a single method across the board.”

Tony Diodato, founder and CTO of Cypress Integration Solutions and co-chair of the SIA OSDP Working Group, is encouraged by what he is seeing around standards lately, but says there is still far to go. “While the wave is heading into shore, we’re not yet feeling the full impact of standards such as OSDP. What we’re seeing is an uptick in conversations with end users, integrators and manufacturers because they are recognizing these standards will allow them to overcome limitations and provide end users with better value, while increasing profit.”

However, he adds, there is one very encouraging trend: “Standards are changing the process of how we integrate evolving technologies into access control. This is the first time in my experience that the standards are at the leading edge of the wave, not the trailing edge.”