As our world becomes ever more interconnected, the need for different types of devices and technologies to communicate with one another only continues to rise. Due to the historically proprietary way that access control security components have been designed and manufactured, achieving this interoperability between different manufacturers’ products within an access control system hasn’t always been easy.
End users and their need for open network-based infrastructures are driving recent changes in this market, as the line between physical security and IT continues to blur. Physical security systems are now often managed by IT departments and IT directors are rightfully demanding open architecture approaches (like IP networks) rather than the proprietary and sometimes duplicative design of traditional security systems.
ONVIF Profile A provides a pathway for access control to become part of this network-based infrastructure, providing an interface for ONVIF member developers to use when developing access control software and other security products. Profile A defines the requirements that govern how one Profile A application can communicate and interact with another, facilitating interoperability for multi-vendor projects.
With the development and release of Profile A, ONVIF is making a long-term commitment to open access control systems in particular. The development of Profile A took two years and the work of many ONVIF member company representatives from all over the world to develop a standard that can take the physical security market into the next decade and into an open network-based infrastructure.
In this article, Bob Dolan of ONVIF member company Anixter illustrates how they have a common mindset with ONVIF. With a belief that standards are created to be tools that let customers make educated decisions, with the freedom to choose the hardware and software of their choice regardless of manufacturer, Anixter has worked for many years to test interoperability.