News for the Access Control Professional


Long-Range Access Control

Focus on Keypad Readers in Access Control Applications

Today, a “hands-free” movement, driven in large part by the COVID-19 pandemic, affects many aspects of our lives. The integration of mobile technology for access control applications was rapidly developing even before the pandemic, and the events of 2020 have only accelerated this trend. So why focus on keypad readers? Despite current health concerns and technology advancements, the fact remains that millions of keypad readers are in use today—and for good reason.

A keypad reader can add an extra layer of security to an access control interaction. In addition to reading a card or tag, a keypad reader can accept a personal identification number (PIN) as a secondary credential, thereby creating a more secure exchange known as two-factor authentication.

This issue of The Reader offers a focus on a variety of resources to assist in the successful specification, sales, installation and use of keypad readers.

Key Features of Farpointe Keypad Readers

  • Capacitive, non-mechanical, solid-state keypads have no moving parts.
  • Individual key presses are indicated by audible beep and LED flash.
  • Keypad’s 5-key is always backlit for easier orientation in non-illuminated environments.
  • Entire keypad remains backlit for approximately 20 seconds after key press or card presentation.
  • Fully potted and IP67 code rated, for installing indoors or out.
  • Available in 3×4 and 2×6 (columns × rows) configurations for mounting to single-gang wall boxes or mullions.
  • Support the leading RFID credential technologies.
  • Limited lifetime warranty.

PIN Best Practices Reference Document

PIN Best Practices for Secure Access Control

Today, the use of PINs—widely used everywhere from alarm panels to banking to telephones—is becoming more common in EAC applications. Security is a main reason. The threat of card cloning may be negated by the use of secret PINs, which are only known by the user. In reality, while PINs have the ability to significantly enhance access control security, they are only as safe as the vigilance of the user.

We put together a PIN Best Practices Reference Document to assist building owners, facility managers, and end-users with the proper management and thoughtful implementation of PIN codes.

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Farpointe Keypad Readers in Use Around the World

Farpointe’s Delta6.4 Contactless Smartcard Reader and Keypad helps secure Dubai International Airport (DXB).

A Farpointe P-640 Proximity Reader and Keypad helps secure access directly from the beach to a gated community in Hawaii.

Recently, this Farpointe Delta6.2 Mullion-Mount Contactless Smartcard Reader and Keypad was spotted on a business in California.

Farpointe’s P-640 Proximity Reader and Keypad is used to control gate access at a car park in Stratford-upon-Avon, UK.

PIN Best Practices Reference Document

Keypad Modes Explained

Out of the box, Farpointe keypad readers transmit data to an access controller in either 8-Bit Burst or 26-Bit Wiegand format. For controllers that support 4-Bit Burst, that mode can be enabled on the keypad reader via a control card.

While in 8-Bit Burst mode (or 4-Bit), the reader transmits data to the controller after each key press. In 26-Bit Wiegand mode, the data is transmitted to the controller only after the complete PIN is entered and the #-key pressed.

Our Keypad Modes Reference Document has a complete explanation of keypad modes, including how to enable each mode.

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Additional Resources:

Specifying a PIN Keypad Reader

A Simple Solution to Address Card Cloning

PIN-Code Best Practices for Secure Access Control

Keypad Reader Case Study: Morristown, Vermont


Frictionless Access: 3 Questions About The Newest Access Trend Answered

By Dr. Andreas Haeberli
Chief Technical Officer, dormakaba Group

Security and access control came a long way from the wooden sticks used as keys in Ancient Egypt and Babylon some 6,000 years ago. Modern access control systems are no longer just keys and locks, but sophisticated ecosystems with high-tech components that interact with each other. From mobile access to facial recognition, many innovative access solutions that look nothing like a wooden stick add value to millions of lives, in terms of convenience and security.

Read More

Have a question about something in The Reader, or about any of Farpointe's RFID readers or credentials?

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SEP - Cyber Vulnerability in Access Control

AUG - Farpointe Products Verified to Meet OSDP Standards

JUL - Keep Your Identity to Yourself

JUN - Focus on Long-Range Access Control Solutions

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