How do access control turnstiles prevent tailgating?

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Maintaining a secure entrance is an essential part of overall building security, however, tailgating is one of the most common physical security breaches, which often results from a random act of kindness such as holding the door to a stranger and can be seamless and a lot less suspicious to follow an authorized person rather than breaking into a building.

What is tailgating?

Tailgating, also known as ‘piggybacking’, in physical security is one of the most widespread security breaches affecting businesses today that often go undetected. Tailgating can be simply described as the passage of an unauthorised person, forced or accidental, behind that of an authorised user.

How and when does tailgating occur?

One of the most frequent instances of tailgating occurs when an employee politely holds open a door for a colleague or visitor. This unintentionally creates a security breach by enabling an unauthorised user to access the building or area. Another instance where tailgating can occur is when an oblivious employee allows a door to slowly close behind them, leaving the opportunity for an unauthorised user to enter via the closing door. Tailgating can also happen unintentionally by third parties, such as subcontractors propping open a door whilst carrying out work. Tailgating can be a particular problem in multi-tenanted buildings where there are a large number of employees and contractors accessing the building.

What are tailgating risks?

The risk of the damage that could occur if the wrong person tailgates into a facility is becoming too great. Usually, tailgaters are thieves, shooters, corporate spies, disgruntled former employees, angry domestic partners. Tailgating accidents are frequently occur in high-traffic settings like large facilities, companies, or residential complexes, which always expose people and companies to perils like loss of revenue or goods, reputation, and even physical danger.

The importance of anti-tailgating behavior

Anti-tailgating behavior is an important way to ensure the security entrance manager to know who is in the building which is paramount for having a secure workplace environment. Large of tailgating accident have driven some of that kind of mindset in thinking about how important it is to ensure that only people who clearly have the right to be in a building are in that building. That’s what anti-tailgating is all about – ensuring that you’re only allowing the person that clearly has the rights and the vetting to come into the spaces.

Access control turnstile: one of effective ways for anti-tailgating    

One of the most efficient ways of mitigating tailgating risks is to install appropriate access control systems — a suitable solution as such is security turnstiles. As the entrance control method of choice for bustling facilities, turnstiles allow only one person at a time, and only after the visitors present the appropriate entrance credentials.Depending on the needs of a building, it’s possible to operate the turnstiles either with or without the assistance of the front-desk or security staff.

There are multiple types of security turnstiles for different applications, industries and levels of security.

Waist-high turnstiles allow only one person to enter at a time, helping to maintain a steady flow of people through an entrance. They are typically used in locations that require ongoing supervision, as it is possible for someone to crawl under or jump over this type of turnstile to enter without being detected or stopped.

Waist High Turnstile - Tripod Gate Turnstile - Ourdoor Turnstile

Full height turnstile gates are a true deterrent, as it is difficult-to-impossible to go over or under them. They works at a perimeter (such as a fence line) to deter intrusion attempts. They prevent tailgating by rotating just enough to let one person through at a time. However, they have no sensors to detect this activity. Therefore, full-height turnstiles are typically used as a first layer of defense, along with video cameras to record activity. There may also be a security guard placed at the entrance if tailgating is a concern.

Full Height Pedestrian Turnstile - Full Heigh Automatic Turnstile - Electronic Turnstile


Optical turnstiles can deter and detect, as they can sense movement during passage and sound an alarm if tailgating occurs. While optical turnstiles with barriers deter unauthorized entry, it is possible to tailgate behind an authorized user, so these turnstiles are most effective when they are used in conjunction with a well-trained security officer.

Optical Turnstiles- Swing Barrier Gate Turnstile - Access Control Turnstile


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