Biometric access control solution for Anglogold

March/April 2000 Access Control & Identity Management

Anglogold's Maob Khotsang Mine in Orkney is successfully rolling out biometric identification for access control to its mine shafts. This follows the positive results received from a pilot project run over the last six months using Recognition Systems' ruggedised hand geometry readers. The units were supplied by VELOCIT-e.

According to Clive Handley, Director of VELOCIT-e, the pilot was run in a controlled environment where only 500 employees were enrolled and a single entrance fitted with two hand geometry readers. The readers were integrated into the mine's existing access control, time and attendance system so as not to affect their back office systems. This kept system changes to a minimum and allowed for rapid integration of the readers.

Gerhardus van den Heever, Human Resources Systems Manager of the mine confirmed that the main consideration for installing biometrics was to obviate the theft of gold and copper from the mines and deny access to illegal workers.

"The theft of copper in the mine exceeds R5 million each year. This is largely due to unlawful entry of nonmine workers."

Van den Heever further added that "the speed and accuracy of the system was a critical factor for us, as we cannot afford any hold ups at the access points as they negatively affect production. Fortunately hand geometry more than adequately met our requirements. We have now installed readers at all our access points and have enrolled in excess of 3000 employees".

HandKey terminals use three dimensional hand measurements to verify a person's identity. Intended mainly for access control, it can be configured in standalone mode or linked with other units for centralised monitoring and data collection. A card reader emulation mode allows for simple integration with existing card-based systems that use proximity, Wiegand, magnetic stripe or bar code-based access control.

The HandKey can store over 35 000 user templates in internal memory, thanks to the industry's smallest template size, 9 bytes. Options include an internal modem, Ethernet card, several card readers for ID number input, smartcard readers and an outdoor version as used at the Maob Khatsang mine in Orkney.

Time restrictions are also supported, allowing users to be excluded from site during specific hours.

For details contact Clive Handley of VELOCIT-e on tel: (011) 258-6900, fax: (011) 258-6939 or e-mail:

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