Genetec Access Control Feature Can Help Identify Risk of COVID-19 Exposure

A new access control reporting function can correlate physical proximity of an infected individual with other employees and badged visitors. The new function was developed at the request of McCormick Place in Chicago.

Genetec Access Control Feature Can Help Identify Risk of COVID-19 Exposure

MONTRÉAL — Genetec announces the release of a new reporting function for its Security Center Synergis access control system that is designed to help organizations find all people who went through a door in close proximity to someone thought to be contagious with an infectious disease.

The new reporting function was developed at the request of McCormick Place in Chicago, North America’s largest convention Center. McCormick Place is being turned into a makeshift hospital to treat individuals infected with COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. The Army Corps of Engineers recently announced plans for the convention center to be set up to treat about 3,000 patients by April 24.

The new the reporting function is said to correlate physical proximity of an infected individual with other employees and badged visitors based on the use of the access control system. A report can quickly be generated to correlate access events by time window to identify people who are at increased risk of being in contact with contaminants or contagious individuals, according to Genetec.

It is conceivable individuals can contaminate door handles or other surfaces, or disperse aerosol contaminants during their passage. The new reporting function can help identify all people who are at increased risk of being in contact with contaminants or contagious individuals, according to the company.

This will allow enterprises to proactively advise individuals of their potential contamination and take the necessary hygienic precautions, as outlined by health and safety procedures and regulations.

The reporting feature — which is also said to be useful for customers that deal with dangerous substances — is being made available to all Genetec Synergis Access Control customers at no cost.

“With Synergis, any organization can produce a detailed report that shows exposure metrics for employees and visitors utilizing existing access control data,” states Thibaut Louvet, product group director, access control at Genetec. “It considers that if two people went through the same door in a short period of time, chances are high that they had some level of interaction. This forensic analysis can be extremely beneficial to organizations seeking to use technology they already have to better protect employees, visitors, and the broader community.”

McCormick Place Security Systems Coordinator Brett Zelnio comments the facility’s “No. 1 priority is to ensure the health and safety of our guests and staff, so we knew we needed to be prepared for any eventuality.”

Zelnio continues, “In the fight against a contagion that can be spread easily through surfaces or proximity to infected individuals, knowledge is our best defense to stem the spread of these types of viruses. Being able to utilize technology to provide these additional metrics available through this system is a new and critical tool.”

Genetec President Pierre Racz explains only about half of Security Center features are a result of the company anticipating which technology will be useful for its end customers.

“The other half are as a result of what our customers dream up. They regularly imagine clever and innovative ways to use the system and suggest useful new feature ideas,” Racz continues. “The Contagion/Contaminant Proximity Report is a case in point. A clever member of the technical staff at one of our public infrastructure customers requested the Contagion/Contaminant Proximity Report and we were taken by its usefulness and brilliant simplicity — so we fast tracked its development.”

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