Colin DePree, Sales Strategy, North America
It won’t be wrong to say that “safety” can sometimes feel abstract, yet better access control has a profound impact on the day-to-day working lives of every individual. The business-critical nature of regulating visitor access and managing the flow of visitors has sparked new ways to accelerate the notions of security and safety. Gone are the days of “set it and forget it,” where organizations would install basic mechanical access control systems and pay no heed to it for years. In fact, mechanical keys, which were once considered the gold standard of access control, are now considered the most rudimentary physical access control system marked by myriad drawbacks, including limited functionality, easy duplicability, and exorbitant maintenance costs. Moreover, extending the coverage of traditional access control has always been an expensive and intrusive process. These stereotypes around traditional access control are being disproved as companies continue to prioritize the safety of their people, staff, visitors, and clients.
Modern businesses require interconnected and smart electronic systems that offer better control, flexibility, and a more cost-effective way to extend an access control system. These electronic access control (EAC) systems need to offer not only physical security but also robust data security coupled with convenience and reliability.
"We continue to drive toward innovation, but we do recognize that oftentimes our solution is enhanced by others, so why not own that!”"
Nobody understands this shifting paradigm better than SALTO Systems, a leading manufacturer of next-generation wire-free electronic locking solutions. Since 2001, SALTO has been redefining the access control world with its smart electronic locking solutions that provide users the ability to control all their access needs and secure every door in their facility without any complicated and expensive wiring. SALTO has been synonymous with innovative software and hardware access control solutions, including stand-alone, cloud-based, and mobile applications, which set new standards in security, manageability, flexibility, and design and bring real-world benefits to virtually any type of door.
Designed to Meet Today’’s Access Control Needs
SALTO was founded with the idea to drive the advancement and adoption of electronic locks by handling the user database differently—leveraging the credential (physical or mobile) as the database. “Over the years, we have continued to grow and evolve our portfolio of electronic locking solutions with a goal to simplify and improve access control and eliminate the mechanical key,” asserts Colin DePree, Sales Strategy, North America at SALTO Systems. The company’s advanced and highly flexible electronic locking solutions help numerous organizations across various sectors, including commercial, education, retail, healthcare, hospitality, and residential, to accomplish their safety and security goals cost-effectively while improving their operational efficiency and the end-user experience.
According to DePree, access control is now becoming “access,” which is not just limited to security but rather a part of a much larger solution that requires partnerships and an ecosystem of end-users, clients, partners, collaborators, and suppliers. It’'s about elevating access beyond just control while delivering an enhanced experience to the end-user.
Over the years, we have continued to grow and evolve our portfolio of electronic locking solutions with a goal to simplify and improve access control and eliminate the mechanical key
Against this backdrop, SALTO Systems is focused on blending the physical and cybersecurity aspects to deliver easy-to-use solutions. SALTO’'s access control systems can be networked without wires to offer near-real-time intelligence and control, providing a seamless, keyless experience to the end-user at all points in a facility. “As we become a part of that larger solution, our customer is not just the person who’'s operating the solution or managing the access control platform but also the end-users—the credential holders,” mentions DePree.
When it comes to improving operational efficiencies, being able to understand and deliver actionable insights from data becomes crucial. However, as data opens new doors, there are major concerns around data security and privacy. “We are keenly focused on data responsibility and integrity. One of our major hardware projects has been to deploy secure elements that ensure encryption across multiple connectivity paths,” states DePree.
Creating World-Class Access Control Systems
From a comprehensive range of electronic locks and cylinders, wall readers, locker locks, cam locks, padlocks to swing handles, SALTO provides end-users with one of the broadest product portfolios in access control worldwide. At the heart of SALTO’s access control solutions is the revolutionary data-on-card-based SALTO Virtual Network (SVN), which powers SALTO SPACE, a wire-free smart access control technology platform. The company also offers SALTO KS (Keys as a Service), a wireless, API-rich, cloud-based access platform.
These solutions are geared toward enabling organizations to enhance overall security and control their access needs not just at the perimeter doors but throughout their facility in a manner that delivers a positive experience for clients, guests, and employees. Especially, the SALTO SPACE platform, a hybrid access control system, is designed to offer end-users ultimate freedom of choice regarding system layout, type and number of access points, and level of security. Additionally, it meets every technical and functional requirement and can deliver scalability regardless of project size.
SALTO SPACE leverages SVN, an easy-to-use system that seamlessly integrates all physical security needs through networked, stand-alone, battery-operated smart locks. It provides the most up-to-date user access information for virtually all doors in a facility and enables stand-alone locks to read, receive, and write information through an encrypted and secure data-on-card system. SVN allows SALTO Systems to move the end-user data from a PC/static location to a physical or mobile credential. This enables the company to reduce the overall infrastructure and deploy offline locks on a wide variety of doors and multiple locations to solve the access issues.
To make it easier for businesses to successfully manage keys, users, and doors across multiple locations, the company offers its highly flexible SALTO KS platform with best-in-class real-time capabilities. With a centralized database, SALTO KS provides better functionality and performance than a mechanical solution and doesn’t require any software installation.
Additionally, SALTO’s JustIN mobile technology makes it easier to incorporate smartphones as a part of the end-user access control solution securely and conveniently. It works with an end user’s iOS or Android smartphone, and the JustIN mobile app lets the user receive their key online. “JustIN technology is critical to our solutions and enables us to be a good partner because we can embed the user credential into a third-party app and deliver our credential through a workplace/resident app,” comments DePree.
Organizations often need to update, store and send the latest access information from the user’s smart keys throughout the building wirelessly and securely. To this end, SALTO offers its wireless, real-time technology, SALTO BLUEnet, to control and manage all access points in an organization in real-time. This robust access control system is developed to meet the demands for data integrity and security. SALTO BLUEnet is networked through Bluetooth RF and is specially designed for doors where real-time control is required. “Securing communication and data from the credential to the database and vice versa is critical.
Our BLUEnet technology allows us to deliver a first-class experience while ensuring the data is not compromised,” says DePree.
Over the years, SALTO has worked continually toward its goal of delivering a hardware solution stack that is uniform across all of its software platforms. Within that hardware set, the company has been innovating and aligning its solutions from a firmware and security capability perspective. “Our commitment to simplicity, efficiency, and security hasn’t changed since our inception; however, how those concepts get deployed has changed. Our hardware has evolved to meet more specific demands, our platforms are now critical to the enablement of ecosystems, and our channels are now integral to our delivery,” states DePree.
Relentless Pursuit of Innovation and Excellence
SALTO's success over the years has been powered by the technological expertise of its R&D team. The company strives to move the idea of access control and security from a one size fits all concept to a vertically aligned approach. This underlines the need to understand the specific demands and requirements of each vertical market and then communicate those to the R&D team—a feat SALTO successfully undertakes while developing hardware and software that meet the needs from a vertical standpoint. The company is steering ahead to deploy a combination SALTO SVN with a cloud infrastructure, which will bring customers the benefit of SVN in conjunction with API integrations and standard security protocols.
SALTO recognizes that its technology advancement and growth should not only focus on building and improving its solutions but also enhancing how they function with other entities in the ecosystem. DePree emphasizes that the concept of competition has changed, and in today’s marketplace, it is critical to approach all opportunities with an open mind while keeping the end-user at the center of all decisions. “We truly believe in the concept of co-opetition. This means that in some scenarios we may need to partner with a competitor to deliver what the end-user wants. Now, this doesn’t mean we aren’t competitive. We continue to drive toward innovation, but we do recognize that oftentimes our solution is enhanced by others, so why not own that!” notes DePree.