Download PDF version Contact company

For Oklahoma City, it took one day to change the way city officials viewed their security. That day was September 11, 2001. After that day, the U.S. government issued Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD)-12, requiring ‘a common identification standard for federal employees and contractors.’ For Oklahoma City, that meant creating a new system for issuing ID cards to city employees, vendors and contractors.

Unfortunately, Oklahoma City was no stranger to emergencies. It ramped up its security program after the Murrah Federal Building bombing in 1995, but it still issued a variety of ID cards. After 9/11 and HSPD-12, it coordinated the look and feel of its ID cards, enhancing its security system at the same time.

Governments often face emergency situations and need a uniform badge,” said Aaron Hallmark of Dowley, Inc., a security systems integration company working with the city. “They want the ability to verify authenticity at a glance.

A Fargo HDP820 High Definition Printer/Encoder prints police and vendor ID cards, while a Fargo HDP600-LC prints cards for city employees

Printing Cards For Police And City Employees

City officials found what they were looking for in two Fargo printers, both of which reside in the Police Department’s Permits and ID section. A Fargo HDP820 High Definition Printer/Encoder prints police and vendor ID cards, while a Fargo HDP600-LC prints cards for city employees.

Hallmark created the design for the city’s ID cards. “City officials wanted a clean, simple card something that could easily be identified at a glance,” he said. Thus, a photo is the predominant feature.

The proximity cards are sequenced so when a user is assigned a card, the number is registered, and the user’s access to the system is tracked. City officials can control exactly who has access to what areas in the city facilities. The cards also are used as identification when an official enforces city codes and ordinances, such as keeping property free of dilapidated buildings.

Adding Holographic Layer To Avoid Duplicity

If someone has to take action on behalf of the city for violations, he or she has verifiable identification. “Government markets need ID that is hard to duplicate and to which security features can be added without extreme costs,” Hallmark added. Two years ago, the city added a holographic overlay to its cards. “Administrators needed to add levels of security that could be seen at a glance,” he said, “because there could be many people with ID cards at a disaster site.

Some departments have touch ID controls that allow access with a thumbprint or computer sign-in capabilities, but all also have readers to record employee time and attendance

Today, the city uses about 4,000 cards, laminated with a special holographic film created with the seal of Oklahoma City.

An unusual aspect of the city’s ID card program is that there are multiple administrators. Access control is administered by managers who can add or delete access rights for their areas. The process is automatic through an interface between AMAG Technology for access control and PeopleSoft Enterprise software.

ID Cards For Visual Verification And Access Control

Each department within the city is like its own company,” added Hallmark, “and it can assign people access control through a central database. This is a little unusual. In most applications, there is one administrator. In the City of Oklahoma City, there are several. Cards are associated with a department, but the database is visible to everyone.” Some departments have touch ID controls that allow access with a thumbprint or computer sign-in capabilities, but all also have readers to record employee time and attendance.

Today, the City of Oklahoma City uses ID cards extensively for visual identification and access control, printing cards for both purposes in-house. A photo ID card is used for visual security, and a proximity card with a barcode is used for building and department access. Even street entertainers and ice cream vendors wear an official city ID card.

Safety For Oklahoma Residents And Visitors

The city’s new ID card system has gone a long way towards helping with security, controlling who has access to what areas and tracking that access, according to Hallmark. If there’s a question of who was in a particular location and for how long, the administrator of the system can track that information.

Oklahoma City has dedicated itself to improvements in the last several years, working hard to make the city more attractive to visitors and a better place to live for residents. It can be proud of the strides it has made in its security program, too. Although the new ID card security program was created by the unfortunate events of one day, it is designed to provide safety for the residents and visitors of Oklahoma City for years to come.

Share with LinkedIn Share with Twitter Share with Facebook Share with Facebook
Download PDF version Download PDF version

In case you missed it

What New Technologies And Trends Will Shape Video Analytics?
What New Technologies And Trends Will Shape Video Analytics?

The topic of video analytics has been talked and written about for decades, and yet is still one of the cutting-edge themes in the physical security industry. Some say yesterday’s analytics systems tended to overpromise and underdeliver, and there are still some skeptics. However, newer technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) are reinvigorating the sector and enabling it to finally live up to its promise. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What new technologies and trends will shape video analytics in 2021?

Tackling The Challenge Of The Growing Cybersecurity Gap
Tackling The Challenge Of The Growing Cybersecurity Gap

The SolarWinds cyberattack of 2020 was cited by security experts as “one of the potentially largest penetrations of Western governments” since the Cold War. This attack put cybersecurity front and center on people’s minds again. Hacking communication protocol The attack targeted the US government and reportedly compromised the treasury and commerce departments and Homeland Security. What’s interesting about the SolarWinds attack is that it was caused by the exploitation of a hacker who injected a backdoor communications protocol.  This means that months ahead of the attack, hackers broke into SolarWinds systems and added malicious code into the company’s software development system. Later on, updates being pushed out included the malicious code, creating a backdoor communication for the hackers to use. Once a body is hacked, access can be gained to many. An explosion of network devices What has made the threat of cyberattacks much more prominent these days has been IT's growth in the last 20 years, notably cheaper and cheaper IoT devices. This has led to an explosion of network devices. IT spending has never really matched the pace of hardware and software growth Compounding this issue is that IT spending has never really matched the pace of hardware and software growth. Inevitably, leading to vulnerabilities, limited IT resources, and an increase in IoT devices get more attention from would-be hackers. Bridging the cybersecurity gap In the author’s view, this is the main reason why the cybersecurity gap is growing. This is because it inevitably boils down to counter-strike versus counter-strike. IT teams plug holes, and hackers find new ones, that is never going to stop. The companies must continue fighting cyber threats by developing new ways of protecting through in-house testing, security best practice sources, and both market and customer leads. End-user awareness One of the key battlegrounds here is the education of end-users. This is an area where the battle is being won at present, in the author’s opinion. End-users awareness of cybersecurity is increasing. It is crucial to educate end-users on what IoT devices are available, how they are configured, how to enable it effectively, and critically, how to use it correctly and safely. Physical security network A valuable product that tackles cybersecurity is, of course, Razberi Monitor™, which is new to ComNet’s portfolio. Monitor™ is a software platform that provides a top-down view of the physical security network and ecosystem. Monitor™ is a software platform that provides a top-down view of the physical security network and ecosystem It monitors and manages all the system components for cybersecurity and system health, providing secure visibility into the availability, performance, and cyber posture of servers, storage, cameras, and networked security devices. Proactive maintenance By intelligently utilizing system properties and sensor data, Razberi’s award-winning cybersecurity software prevents problems while providing a centralized location for asset and alert management. Monitor™ enables proactive maintenance by offering problem resolutions before they become more significant problems. Identifying issues before they fail and become an outage is key to system availability and, moreover, is a considerable cost saving.

Will Airport Security’s Pandemic Measures Lead To Permanent Changes?
Will Airport Security’s Pandemic Measures Lead To Permanent Changes?

Travel volumes at airports have been increasing of late, although still below the 2.5 million or so passengers the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screened every day, on average, before the pandemic. As passengers return, they will notice the airport security experience has changed during the pandemic – and many of the changes are likely to continue even longer. Need for touchless technology The lowest U.S. air travel volume in history was recorded last April, with approximately 87,500 passengers. As passenger traffic plummeted, the aviation community sought to explore the potential of new technologies to make security checkpoints more contactless and flexible when the traffic numbers return. The pandemic has seen an increase in touchless technology deployed in the screening area. Used for cabin baggage screening, Computed Tomography (CT) produces high-quality, 3-D images to enable a more thorough analysis of a bag’s contents. Imaging Technology Millimeter-wave body scanners began replacing metal detectors globally as a primary screening method Enhanced Advanced Imaging Technology (eAIT), which uses non-ionizing radio-frequency energy in the millimeter spectrum, safely screens passengers without physical contact for threats such as weapons and explosives, which may be hidden under a passenger’s clothing. Millimeter-wave body scanners began replacing metal detectors globally as a primary screening method.  AI algorithms Other innovations include an automatic screening lane, centralized image processing, and artificial intelligence (AI). Looking ahead, AI algorithms have the ability to clear most passengers and bags automatically, making the process smoother and freeing up staff to focus only on alarms. The pandemic’s need for contactless screening may accelerate the adoption of AI.   CAT machine Credential Authentication Technology (CAT) machines automatically verify identification documents presented by passengers during the screening process. The TSA continues to accept expired Driver’s Licenses and state-issued IDs for up to a year after expiration, based on the premise that license renewals may be delayed and/or more difficult during the pandemic. The REAL ID enforcement deadline was extended to Oct. 1, 2021.  Health precautions Checkpoint health precautions have been a part of the airport screening experience since early in the pandemic. Last summer, the TSA announced the “Stay Healthy. Stay Secure” campaign, which included requirements such as social distancing among travelers, ID verification without physical contact, plastic shielding installed at various locations, and increased cleaning and disinfecting. In January 2021, President Biden signed an Executive Order requiring travelers to wear face masks when in airports and other transportation facilities (to remain in effect until May 11). Checkpoint screening Clear is a privately owned company that provides expedited security that uses biometrics either a person’s eyes or face to speed along the process of getting people through checkpoints. TSA officers wear masks and gloves at checkpoints and may also wear eye protection or clear plastic face shields. The limits on allowable liquids a passenger may take on board were broadened to include a hand sanitizer container of up to 12 ounces, one per passenger in a carry-on bag. a paradigm shift Just as aviation security changed after 9/11, the COVID-19 crisis is expected to lead to a paradigm shift to create a safer and more secure environment. Measures were implemented so that passengers, staff and other stakeholders could have continued assurance and confidence in airports amid and after the pandemic.