EKA | CyberLock


water utilities

Securing Water Utilities

Why CyberLock’s electro-mechanical master key system is the best solution for securing our country’s water utilities.

[1] https://water360.com.au/topic/australian-water-industry/
[2] https://www.industry.nsw.gov.au/water/water-utilities/best-practice-mgmt/iwcm/town-water-security-analysis
[3] https://utilitymagazine.com.au/additional-370-million-for-water-security-in-nsw-budget-2022/

There are over 196 water utility organisations across Australia[1], and each face a number of unique security challenges due to the nature of the work, the environments in which assets need to secured and the fact that they are often geographically spread across several remote locations. Water security is important to ensure long term continuous access to reliable drinking water supply and allows communities to grow and thrive by contributing to good health, economic development opportunities, social amenity and liveability. [2]

In fact, just recently, the NSW Government announced that an extra $396.6 million dollars would be invested into the Safe and Secure Water Program to “safeguard access to quality drinking water and improve water security”[3]

Entry gates, well sites, re-pumping stations, dams and a number of other sensitive areas need to be tightly monitored and secured which is why water utility companies need a capable, high security solution that can withstand elemental conditions as well as a system that has advanced accountability options.

Many of the sites mentioned are outdoors and in remote locations that are exposed to the elements and therefore rendering most security solutions such as your standard mechanical or electronic master key system inoperable or unsustainable. Mechanical systems lack the accountability needed to keep a remote asset secure and electronic systems require hardwiring, power and network capabilities, which is often not available or feasible at such locations.

In addition to deployment challenges, accountability is also a significant factor to consider with most utility organisations needing to track and control access for their many employees, contractors and vendors. This becomes increasingly difficult with a mechanical master key system which is generally the first line of defence when it comes to securing other industries or utilities. With these types of master key systems, the risks associated with a lost, stolen or copied key are innumerable. With no way to manage or trace when a key is lost or copied, a facility can easily lose control of their security, posing huge risks to their entire infrastructure. Not to mention the cost of needing to rekey a single or entire facility.

Enter EKA CyberLock; combining the best features of an electronic system with the simple installation, affordability and the ease of use of a mechanical system.

CyberLock’s fully electronic electro-mechanical master key systems provide full featured access control to every locking point, regardless of the location of the lock.

A more ideal solution than your traditional mechanical or electronic master key system, and more suitable for water and waste utilities than a hybrid master key system. While hybrid systems do have benefits, keys will eventually be lost or stolen and while they can be blocked from using the electronic locks, they will continue to operate the mechanical locks within a system.

However, CyberKeys are programmed with access permissions for each individual (or group of individuals) and if a key is lost or stolen, it can easily be deactivated, eliminating the need to re-key which is where a mechanical  and hybrid system fails. Water and waste facilities can simply mark the key as lost in their software and communicate that information to their locks, rendering the key as inoperable if access is attempted.

Moreover, CyberKeys can be easily programmed for individual circumstances. Whether it be for a one time, limited access job and rendered inactive upon completion, proving that accountability is of utmost importance within the system. Or through the use of a CyberKey Blue3 combined with our CyberAudit Link app where by the CyberKey Blue3 can updated anywhere, anytime via the app without needing to visit a set location.

CyberLock cylinders are easily deployed and can be installed on just about any application and require no power or wiring, and sit dormant. Instead, the batteries in our smart CyberKeys energise the cylinders when inserted. Which means a CyberLock cylinder can be inserted into a Carbine Dual Entry Padlock to secure a remote, off the grid facility making it an ideal solution for water utility companies.

All CyberLock padlock cylinders are also IP68 rated, meaning they are specifically designed to withstand the harsh effects of the weather and elements and are fully operational in temperatures as low as -40 degrees and as high as 70 degrees.

CyberKey Vaults would also be a beneficial addition to a water utility asset in that it would easily and securely cater to the many contractors that need access to certain facilities. The vaults program and dispense CyberKeys with customised access privileges based on time, date and authority level. Once the key is returned to the vault, it deactivates and is ready to programmed again for the next person.

All this, combined with the fact that mechanical and hybrid master key systems struggle to meet the needs of the water utility industry, make selecting a CyberLock fully electronic electro-mechanical master key system the top choice. It ticks all the boxes of security and reliability that is imperative at a facility such as a water utility.

How It Works