Securing the exterior and interior entries of a single building, or set of buildings, is one of the more difficult tasks facing facility managers. Criminals, from thieves to vandals to active shooters, can walk into many facilities through unlocked front doors, loading bays, or employee entrances. Once inside, there is often nothing more to stop them from entering cash or computer rooms, executive offices, and equipment storage areas. Success comes with controlling access. 

An security officer can make a serious impact on keeping people out of areas where they don’t belong by simply locking doors in a way that will not interfere with normal operations. But during the day, some people may need to enter those locked doors, and that is where video intercoms can play a role. These types of intercoms act as a facility’s “video doorbell,” alerting staff that someone wants to enter the building or a critical internal operational area. Sitting behind a locked door, a receptionist or other staff member can view and talk with a visitor before pushing a button to unlock the door remotely. If there’s any doubt about the visitor’s intentions, the door can remained locked. 

A typical video intercom consists of a vandal-resistant door station that is surface mounted just outside the entry. Most include a colour camera, call button, and a speaker and microphone for communication. Some are available with pan, tilt, and zoom (PTZ) cameras that allow the lens to move for viewing a person and zoom out to see groups of people at the door. 

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