Founded in 1881, the University of Connecticut (UConn) is a public research university with more than 32,000 under- and post-graduate students and more than 9,000 faculty and staff.
Founded in 1881, the University of Connecticut (UConn) is a public research university with more than 32,000 under- and post-graduate students and more than 9,000 faculty and staff. It has five campuses across the state of Connecticut that cover an area of 4,000 acres. According to the U.S. News & World Report, UConn ranks among the top 25 public universities in the nation.
Securing a campus network with thousands of students is a top priority and multifaceted challenge for UConn administrators. As students’ college careers progress, so does their need to access spaces such as dormitories, labs and research facilities. In addition, students require services that are essential day-to-day components of the university experience, such as copying, printing and dining hall services.
The Husky One Card is UConn’s one-card solution designed to meet its physical access control and service needs. Previously, the university’s card solution utilized proximity and magstripe technologies, which can easily be cloned.
“We knew the security vulnerability existed,” said Stephanie Kernozicky, Director of the One Card Office at the University of Connecticut. “One of our honors students completed his thesis on our ID card’s security flaws. We supported his research one hundred percent and it further proved our case that we needed to upgrade our cards.”
UConn administrators were seeking a solution capable of increasing security while retaining magstripe and proximity technology to allow for a phased, university-wide transition to an updated one-card ecosystem. A secondary goal was to consolidate their credential issuance process into one easy-to-manage, in-house system that would minimize student wait times.
UConn partnered with identification solutions provider ColorID and selected HID Global
’s Seos credential technology to re-card the entire university. The new Husky One Cards strengthen the security of UConn’s physical access control and service applications in their one-card system.
“The biggest challenge for UConn was it needed to re-card its campus to bolster security,” said Cassie Bunner, Higher Education Account Manager at ColorID. “We wanted to present the university with a technology we knew and had confidence in. HID was exactly that.”
To accommodate the university’s strategically timed approach, ColorID selected HID’s triple-technology card—featuring magstripe, proximity, and Seos technology—for UConn to complete a phased transition of readers and software across the university’s network of campuses. Its in-house service bureau custom printed, laminated and encoded the magnetic stripes, and inspected and confirmed the data for every credential shipped.
UConn initially printed 40,000 new Husky One Cards. To manage credential issuance in the future, UConn selected and deployed the HID FARGO Connect offering at its campuses to decentralize and optimize the process. HID FARGO Connect supports high-volume ID card issuance by combining hardware, software and consumables into one cloud-based platform and enabled UConn to issue credentials from any device with a web interface.
The university paired HID FARGO Connect with HDP5600 printers to enable inline card personalization and eliminate the manual entry of proximity and smart card data.
“Setting up our university with HID FARGO Connect will allow regional campuses to print cards directly for students—no wait, no temporary card,” said Kernozicky. “The mobility of being able to take pictures and print wherever we need was a big factor in selecting FARGO Connect.”
UConn has eliminated security vulnerabilities with no disruption to university life by re-carding its access control system with HID Seos cards across its campuses in a phased approach. Seos’ best-in-class cryptography not only offers data and privacy protection that combat card duplication and other security attacks, but also equips UConn’s campuses to deploy mobile access in the future.
Beyond access control, the One Card team now manages credentials and extends Seos to applications such as secure printing, cashless vending, parking, and more. With magstripe, proximity and Seos technology powering campus IDs, cardholders can access the entire Husky One Card ecosystem as new readers and software are installed. Once complete, the university plans to remove the proximity component of the Husky One Cards, which will reduce future card issuance costs.
Moving forward, UConn’s One Card office anticipates it will print and encode about 18,000 cards annually in-house using HID FARGO Connect.
“We knew that Seos was going to be the best choice for UConn and in line with the printer technology they were seeking. It came down to HID technology because UConn wanted a system that worked cohesively without compro- mising security,” said Bunner.