Tailgating is one of the most common security breaches. It starts out innocently with an employee opening a door & holding it open for others, visitors without badges or the acceptance of a uniformed worker.
The problem with this situation is that they open the premises to undocumented & unauthorized entry by individuals who could harm the property &/or its occupants.
Anti-tailgating strategies ensure only the people meant to be in the premises are allowed access. Approved users go in while unauthorized people are blocked.
One of the biggest issues with tailgating is the potential for crime to be done by someone you did not even know was in the building. Tailgating exposes the premises to domestic violence, theft, sabotage & terrorism.
However, not all threats are external. Some internal building areas (laboratory, pharmacy, operating suite, equipment room, or data centre) need to have restricted access for a subpopulation of occupants because you need to restrict & track who can access valuable equipment, sensitive files or toxic chemicals.
Tailgating impacts building management practices as well. If your HVAC or lighting system is tied to occupancy, an influx of unexpected bodies will affect your energy consumption. Inaccurate headcounts during an emergency can also lead to occupants unknowingly left behind or emergency personnel needlessly searching for people who were never on the premises.
There are a variety of anti-tailgating solutions. Which solution is right for you is dependent on the specific entry point you want to secure, the layout of the entrance, the reason for controlling access & the budget. Tailgating strategies are easy to retrofit & complement most existing security systems.
You can install the most advanced security system on the market, but your security measures will fail if the occupants are not on board. You need to create a secure building culture. Clear expectations & constant communication shape behavior.
The simplest way to deal with tailgating is to build a culture of the challenge principle. This only requires making people aware of the risks & empowering them to challenge unfamiliar faces.
You can also save money by selectively targeting entrances that pose the greatest risk for tailgating. You do not need anti-tailgating at every door. Regular access control is more than adequate for standard control at most entry points.
AIP Risk Consulting designs access control systems to keep your premises safe.