May 17, 2022

A person placing their access card to a door in a hotel room

The recent farewell to Apple’s iPod has us pondering how far technology has come in the last few decades. Today, our music is conveniently and securely stored on our phones, ready to connect to our wireless headphones with a single tap. But as we continue to move toward a digitally driven future, we can’t help but wonder: how much longer until identification documents like physical employee badges line the bottoms of our unused desk drawers, replaced by digital authentication processes?  

Spoiler: Industry experts predict they won’t make it past 2030.

“In a recent third-party survey conducted among 1,000 respondents, an increasingly large number of [users] agree that they would commit to a fully digital lifestyle where they could use digital authentication for all daily processes,” said Jesse Franklin, Senior Vice President U.S. & Canada at Incode.

It’s not hard to see why. Keeping up with physical anything is becoming more and more cumbersome as digital convenience becomes the long-reigning king. From financial statements and cards to insurance information, we’re Marie Kondo-ing our everyday physical belongings and swapping them out for digital alternatives. 

A more imperative reason: security. Personal information is still a top contender for cybercrime and identity thieves, keeping employees and leadership teams on their toes as they work to safeguard it. Since more is at stake when it comes to how data is being used and stored, authentication conducted digitally is deemed to be more secure than legacy methods. But simply going digital won’t solve the problem. For example, most Physical Access Control Systems can only manage 24/7 access to cardholders, leaving the door wide open to security breaches. And when departments live in silos, closing one door won’t close the rest.


1. Think bigger with converged cyber-physical security

A converged solution that integrates with HR systems, IT, OT and Physical Access Control Systems (PACS) provides the ability to assign specific role and policy-based cyber-physical access, so you can maintain control over who goes where and when. With a converged security technology platform, your Security Operations Center (SOC) can deliver a unified and proactive threat response to a wide range of incidents—with real-time data connection across enterprise applications.

2. Consider enterprise scalability and global deployment

The latest SaaS solutions are designed to scale to hundreds of thousands of users for large enterprise and mission critical applications. This means unifying security across multiple systems and geographies is key. Powerful and flexible technology platforms aggregate reporting and data from all locations, with high availability enterprise fail-over and backup. Secure cloud-based architecture supports global deployment and scale.

3. Level up with built-in compliance and active policy enforcement

With cyber-physical identity access management, built-in controls automate the compliance process, checking the boxes of all industry regulations and corporate policies. Integration with Learning Management Systems like SAP Successfactors deliver automatic verification of training for real-time rule enforcement. And when requirements aren’t met, access can be automatically revoked. Compliance and Active Policy Enforcement features allow you to meet regulatory requirements with ease and consistency. Plus, you can enable role-based and individual user-based access to critical assets for new levels of asset governance.

Our Policy-Based Access Control solution, in partnership with BioConnect, reinvents your existing PACS to transform workplace security from “all the time” to real-time authorization at the door, without the hassle of custom coding. Plus, you can implement it with a secure standard card reader or a biometric reader—your choice.

And the conversation only builds from there.

Start now with Alert Enterprise

Will the physical ID disappear by 2030? Only time will tell. But let’s connect on how we can keep you ahead of the curve with cyber-physical identity access management and security. 

Let's chat.