Ingersoll Rand study finds average college student uses ID card for 6.36 applications

Carmel, Ind., October 11, 2011 – Ingersoll Rand Security Technologies, a leading global provider of security and safety solutions and manufacturer of Schlage contactless smart credentials and readers, today announced that access to buildings, identification, cafeteria/food courts, library, bookstore purchases, printing and vending, in that order, are the leading applications for which American college students use their school-issued cards. Data from independent research, Effective Management of Safe & Secure Openings & Identities, also showed that 76 percent of colleges still use a magnetic stripe card, even though students are the leading first adapters for new technologies. Only 31 percent of them are using proximity cards, 16 percent are using proximity fobs/tokens, ten percent are using biometrics and nine percent are using smart cards. Ingersoll Rand Security Technologies earlier reported (September 8, 2011) that the same study showed that only 18 percent of colleges believe their security access control is effective.

"There are great discrepancies between types of colleges and what they use," advances Beverly Vigue, vice president of education markets at Ingersoll Rand Security Technologies. "Overall, the great majority of colleges still deploy picture ID cards, magnetic stripe cards, mechanical keys and barcodes for access control on campus versus newer, more secure technologies such as proximity and, especially, biometrics and smart cards."

In specific, Vigue adds, four year colleges are more likely than two-year colleges to use picture IDs to manage identities. Large colleges are most likely to use biometrics, proximity and smart cards, while small schools were least likely to do so. Biometrics are used more by city/urban colleges as opposed to rural/countryside schools. The University of California-Irvine, with 22,000 students is an example.

"The number one complaint we received from students over the years is that they don’t want to have to always remember to bring their student ID," says Jill Schindele, director of campus recreation at the University of California-Irvine, who uses hand geometry biometrics at the recreation center. "It is a problem at every university in the country that has an ID card system."

Four-year colleges are more likely to use credentials for bookstore, vending and cafeteria purchases, laundry, library and retail off campus than two-year colleges while publicly funded colleges use credentials more for printing, transportation and as a debit card on/off campus than private schools. Colleges in cities/urban areas use credentials for historical/student records, printing, secure computer log-in, time and attendance and transportation while small town colleges use credentials for library checkout. Rural schools use them for identification and suburban schools use credentials for access to buildings.

The places where schools undertook visual identity checks (VICs) also varied as to the type of school. Four-year colleges are more likely than two-year schools to do VICs in dorms and cafeterias and at recreational facilities and sporting events. Publicly funded schools were more likely to do VICs at their child care facilities while private schools emphasized sporting events. Colleges in the suburbs did more VICs in their cafeterias and libraries while city/urban schools deployed VICs at their recreational facilities. Mid-sized schools were more likely to do VICs in their cafeterias. Large schools were more likely to not use people to perform VICs at all.