Thursday, November 20, 2008

Increasing File Cabinet Security

A Thorough Review of Upgrade Options and Choices
Business document and computer media security is a small but very important part of the overall strategy for safeguarding papers, intellectual property and vital operational or research data. Standard metal filing cabinets do not offer any protection or security from theft or burglary and will not be considered in this review of available options from FireKing and Schwab Corp / Sentry.

File Cabinet Construction
From a physical security perspective the initial construction of a filing cabinet is vital to deterring theft or break-in attempts. When comparing Schwab cabinets to FireKing there is a distinct difference and overall security. Schwab Corp. builds their product using a one piece construction method. This means that there are not several pieces assembled to make the cabinet shell. The only seams that are accessible are those at the back of the cabinet. This makes it more difficult to tamper with the contents of the unit as the back panel should be sitting directly next to a wall.
FireKing cabinets are built using a multi-piece construction that allows both the sides and top of the unit to be removed.

Lock Bars
Locking bars are an added security feature that can be used with a standard file cabinet and fireproof files. FireKing offers the lockable security bar option direct from the factory to beef up physical security and access control initiatives. By having these installed at the time of order you can easily incread file cabinet security and reduce your long term costs typically associated with retrofitted cabinets.

Lock Upgrades and Access Control
All filing cabinets are equipped with plunger key locks. These locks are not "high security" as they can be picked. Simply put these locks are a deterrant to theft. You can easily install or improve this part of your security plan by choosing a Medecco key lock. These locks (standard on every FireKing file) are UL Listed to resist picking and prying.

One of the only downsides to a key lock is that if you loose or misplace your keys, you'll be spending some money on having a locksmith come out to assist you. Many businesses choose to upgrade to a digital electronic lock. Not only will this offer great convenience, but you can easily change the combination at any time. This option is very important for a business with a high turn over rate of employees. What happens if the battery goes dead? This inevitably will happen over time and it's a simple matter of removing the lock face plate and installing a new 9V volt battery. When the battery gets low the lock will emit a beep as a warning.

Fire Protection, 1 Hour or 2 Hour?
The industry standard is a 1 hour UL fire rating. Why then is there a Schwab 2 Hour cabinet and a FireKing 2 Hour cabinet? There are several reasons and one being that if you want the best, you will buy the best fire rated file cabinet available. If it's worth protecting, it is safe to say that a 2 hour fire rating is a better choice. If you are located in a rural area or have a remote office location it would be a wise choice to purchase the two hour rated fire file - logic tells us that it will take longer for the fire department to respond. In most urban situations a 1 hour fire file will suffice.

No comments: