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Defence to upgrade ID Verification System

by Katrina Elkington •
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The Department of Defence has signalled its intention to upgrade its current electronic access control system (EACS) issuing a Request for Tender for the system upgrade on 19 April 2011. 

The associated procurement plan DoD-32 indicates that the EACS upgrade is part of the Base Security Improvement Program which was allocated a total $329 million over five years in the 2010-11 Australian Government Budget.

Tender documents state that the system supports the positive identification of persons and enables physical access to restricted areas within the Defence estate in the ACT. The Department currently utilises a Cardax™ system which controls the Defence Pass Offices and the Defence Common Access Card (DCAC). 

The tender documents also reveal that the current system, which has been in place since 2005, has been experiencing more frequent failures and is declining in terms of overall performance. Hence Defence is planning to conduct a technology refresh of the system.

The selected vendor will be asked to:

  • Replace end-of-life server hardware;
  • Upgrade Cardax™FT Command Centre software version 4.2 to Cardax FT v6.xx.
  • Replace end-of-life guard station desk top computers that manage positive identification and visitor management access control credentials.
  • Introduce a fully integrated visitor management solution that utilises a common data repository with the Cardax FT Command Centre access control system (through the Cardax Visitor Management module), for use at existing guard station locations.

The selected vendor will be responsible for the configuration of servers, door controllers and desktop computers (at guard stations, pass office stations, and system administration stations) to align functioning requirements with the refreshed version.

The vendor will need to be licensed by the Cardax™ product Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) as a ‘Cardax Channel Partner’ to provide software licenses, carry out upgrades, and supply related services within the ACT.

To respond to the RFT, tenderers will also require access to Restricted Specification documents.  Tenderers will require a minimum personal security clearance of Restricted and will be required to handled and store the Restricted Specification in accordance with the Security Instructions to Accompany Restricted Material Released to Australian Defence Industry.

Access to the EACS Network is primarily issued and remotely managed by the ACT Defence Pass Offices. The DCAC presently employs the Philips MiFare Classic product, which uses visual photo recognition and access via proximity based read and electronic validation of credentials.

Throughout its implementation, progress will be reviewed on a fortnightly basis through Unit and System tests, as well as a Quality Management program outlined in the tender documents.

The Contractor is expected to provide operation training to access control guards for the new System and Cardax™ Visitor Management module. The issued software license will include 12 months of maintenance support, to manage upgrades.

The Department of Defence operates across the ACT region, controlling security services associated with the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Serco Sodexho Defence Services (SSDS). These organisations assist ID verification business and security requirements by dispensing visitor and temporary access rights to selected areas via the Cardax™ FT Online Manager product.

The project is expected to commence in the second quarter of 2011.

The RFT closes on 24 May 2011.


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  • Federal
  • Software
  • Defence
  • Base Security Improvement Program
  • Cardax
  • Department of Defence
  • ID Verification