Campus Cards, College and University Identification and Security

Radio frequency identification (RFID): Proximity and contactless card technology on campus

Thursday, May 1, 2003

Many campuses utilize proximity cards (also called prox cards) to control access to buildings and facilities. Typically, these have been a stand-alone ID card separate from the official campus ID. Today, however, more and more institutions are opting to merge the two cards, adding the proximity technology to the official ID. While not yet commonplace in the higher education environment, contactless cards are becoming the technology of choice for many transportation fare collection systems, financial ‘wireless’ payments, and many secure credential projects. Both proximity and contactless cards employ the same fundamental technology–radio frequency identification (RFID)–for operation.

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