A Physical Access Control System (PACS) grants access to employees and contractors that work at or visit a site by electronically authenticating their PIV credentials. Although PACSs are Information Technology systems, they must be designed, deployed, and also operated in collaboration with Physical Security groups to efficiently fulfill firm mission demands.

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PACS Components

The following table specifies prevalent PACS components:

ComponentDescription
Access point Entrance allude or physical barrier wright here an employee or contractor interacts via the PACS. Example accessibility points incorporate turnstiles, gateways, and locking doors.
PIV credential Federal employees and also building contractors usage Personal Identity Verification (PIV) credentials to physically access federal facilities and logically access federal information devices.
Credential reader and keypad The reader offers power to and also reads data from a PIV credential. The reader also sends out this data to a regulate panel to authenticate the PIV credential and also repursuit accessibility authorization. Employees and builders may need to enter a PIN into the keypad and also include a biometric, relying on the facility’s security classification and hazard levels.
Biometric reader Captures biometric data (for instance, fingerprint or iris scan) and also verifies it against the PIV credential’s biometric information.
Control panel Receives the credential data sent by the reader and verifies its visibility in the credential holder information repository. It then renders an access decision and also transmits authorization information to the accessibility regulate server and also access suggest.
Access regulate server Grants authorization to the employee or contractor requesting access (for instance, presenting a PIV credential to a reader). It likewise registers and enrolls employees and contractors; enrolls and also validates credentials; and logs system events.
Credentialholder data repository Contains employee and contractor information and also physical access privileges. Control panels use this authoritative information to validate credential data.
Auxiliary Systems Agencies may combine the PACS through extra facility security units such as security devices, fire alarm units, and evacuation units.

All agency-purchased PACS components should be FIPS 201-compliant and also schosen from GSA"s Apverified Products List (APL) for PACS Products. The assets in this list have undergone vulnercapability and interoperability experimentation via the FIPS 201 Evaluation Program. As an IT mechanism, a PACS should still complete Certification and Accreditation and achieve an Authority to Operate from your agency before connecting to the netoccupational.


FICAM Compliant PACS Characteristics

In May 2019, the Office of Management and also Spending Plan (OMB) released memorandum M-19-17, Enabling Mission Delivery through Imshowed Identity, Credential, and also AccessManagement. Related to PACS, M-19-17 rescinded memorandum M-11-11, Continued Implementation of Homeland also Security Presidential Directive (HSPD) 12 – Policy for a Typical Identification Standard for Federal Employees and Contractors. The updated guidance adds better specificity to require the usage of PIV credentials for physical accessibility to Federal framework, applied per The Risk Management Process for Federal Facilities: An Interfirm Security Committee Standard and also NIST SP 800-116, Revision 1, A Recommendation for the Use of PIV Credentials in Physical Access Control Systems (PACS).

Characteristics of NIST SP 800-116, Revision 1, compliant units encompass, yet are not restricted to:

Use high-assurance credentials for electronic authentication of employees and builders. Validay the condition and authenticity of credentials. Interoperate with PIV credentials issued by various other agencies. Use components detailed on the GSA FIPS 201 Apshowed Products List (APL).

The next area, PACS Deployment Models, defines widespread deployment models for PACS.

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steustatiushistory.org.gov is a collaboration in between GSA and the Federal CIO Council. It is managed by the Identity Assurance and also Trusted Access Division in the GSA Office of Government-wide Policy.