Is it time to update my access control readers and cards?

Older technology readers are not as secure as they once were

Is it time to update my access control readers and cards?

For decades, 125 kHz cards, fobs and readers have been the standard for access control. But like any technology, it becomes out-of-date. In this case, criminals have developed technology to bypass the system. An inexpensive device has been created which makes it relatively easy to hack the system. Hack Your Access Control With This $30 HID 125kHz Card Copier. This device copies fobs/cards, compromising your access control system. They are widely available including sites such as eBay. These vulnerable 125KHZ formats include…

  • HID Prox 
  • HID ProxII
  • ISO Proxll
  • Indala
  • EM 4100/4200/4300

To combat this risk, the top credential manufacturers in the world have been working hard on new, more secure offerings. Some of those include:

  • HID iClass SEOS
  • HID iClass Elite (non-SE/SEOs Formats) includes blue tooth and apple wallet credentials

No credential will ever be permanently secure, and planning for Multi-Factor Authentication is a next level offering and always budget for credential upgrades as they become available.

Some multifactor authentication options include the following in addition to a FOB:

  • Pin
  • Facial recognition
  • Biometric fingerprint
  • Iris scanner

Another new technology to combat hacking the actual reader is the use of OSDP (open supervised devise protocol). That basically means the access control system and the card reader communicate back and forth to verify a valid card read. Like other options, OSDP devices have their own set of benefits and considerations.


To mitigate these risks, we strongly recommend upgrading your older equipment to an encrypted and hashed 13.56 MHz format or OSDP ready product offering. Take a look at your current access control system and see if this is an issue that applies to you. We recognize this could be an unexpected upgrade expense and would welcome a conversation about all your options and the pros and cons associated. Please call our office at 262-780-9770 and we will be happy to help.