THOUGHT CENTER > Blog > Access Controls

How QR Codes Are Changing Access Control

October 19, 2023

No time to read? Here’s a summary:

  • The cost-effectiveness, convenience, and security of QR codes make them a go-to credential option for access control.
  • There are two types of QR codes used in access control: static and dynamic. Static codes are permanent and can be used multiple times. Dynamic codes, on the other hand, change periodically to provide heightened security.
  • The benefits of using QR codes for access control include cost savings, automated logging, and convenience for end-users and administrators alike.

From product packaging to digital payments, QR codes are everywhere. According to a recent Statista report, 57% of consumers have scanned food QR codes to get product-specific information. QRs are even replacing restaurant menus!

But have you considered their role in access control?

Keep on reading to understand what QR codes have to do with access control and why they’re being adopted by businesses and organizations of all sizes and at all security levels.

How Do QR Codes Relate to Access Control?

QR codes, short for "Quick Response," are two-dimensional barcodes that can store a variety of data types, such as text, website URLs, and contact information.

They provide a quick and efficient way to access or share information, and they’re easily scanned using a smartphone camera or QR code reader.

In the context of access control, a unique QR code is generated for each authorized individual. When scanned by a specialized reader or smartphone at an entry point, the system verifies the code against a database before deciding whether to allow or deny access.

Static vs. Dynamic QR Codes

In the realm of access control, QR codes come in two primary forms: static and dynamic.

Static QR Codes

Static QR codes are fixed, meaning they remain the same and can be used repeatedly for entry. They’re often used in less sensitive areas where high-level security is not a primary concern.

Dynamic QR Codes

Dynamic QR codes are ideal for high-security environments like corporate offices and government buildings.

They’re time-sensitive and change at regular intervals, or each time they’re scanned.

This feature makes dynamic QR codes much more difficult to misuse.

Advantages of Using QR Codes for Access Control

Enhanced Security: Dynamic QR codes offer an extra layer of security by changing periodically, making it difficult for unauthorized individuals to gain access.

QR codes offer various encryption methods to keep data secure and only accessible to authorized personnel.

Remote Access Granting: Administrators can generate and send QR codes remotely, allowing for immediate and temporary access without requiring physical presence.

Cost-Effective: QR codes eliminate the need for expensive hardware like smartcards and Bluetooth readers.

User-Friendly: Scanning a QR code is simple and intuitive to speed up the entry process and improve the end-user experience.

Quick and Easy Setup: Implementing a QR code-based system is straightforward, requiring only a QR code generator and a scanner, which can even be a smartphone.

Easy Integration: QR codes can be easily integrated into existing access control systems and even non-security platforms, such as event management software.

Versatility: QR codes can be used in a variety of settings, from corporate offices to residential buildings and events.

Audit Trails: The system can log each scan, providing a detailed record of entries and exits. These trails are valuable for security audits and compliance.

Reduced Human Error: Automated scanning minimizes the risk of human error associated with manual entry.

Setting Up QR Code Access Control Systems

Setting up a QR code-based access control system is straightforward. You'll need a QR code generator, a database to store codes, and scanners for verification. Once these elements are in place, you're good to go.

QR Code Applications

QR Codes in Residential Access Control

QR codes are becoming increasingly popular in residential settings, from gated communities to apartment buildings.

QR Codes in Corporate Access Control: In a corporate setting, security is a top priority. QR codes offer an efficient way to manage employee access, track attendance, and even integrate with other systems like payroll.

QR Codes in Event Access Control: Managing large crowds at events can be challenging. QR codes simplify this by speeding up the entry process and reducing the risk of unauthorized access.

QR Codes in Vehicle Access Control: Automated parking lot security systems are now using QR codes for secure and efficient vehicle access.

Challenges and Solutions in QR Code Access Control

While QR codes offer a plethora of advantages in access control, they are not without their challenges. Below are some common issues and their respective solutions:

Challenge: Code Duplication

One of the primary concerns is the potential for QR code duplication. Dynamic QR codes can mitigate this risk as they change periodically, making it difficult for unauthorized users to duplicate or share them.

Challenge: User Error

Sometimes, users may need help in scanning the QR code, either due to poor lighting or issues with the scanning device. User education and well-placed instructions can help alleviate this problem.

Challenge: Technical Glitches

Like any technology, QR codes are susceptible to technical issues, such as server downtime or scanner malfunctions. Regular maintenance and having a backup manual entry system can help in such scenarios.

Challenge: Data Security

Since QR codes store information, there's a risk of data breaches if not properly encrypted. Employing advanced encryption techniques can secure the data effectively.

Challenge: Limited Device Compatibility

While most modern smartphones can scan QR codes, older models may not have this capability. Providing alternative access methods or dedicated scanning devices can solve this issue.

Challenge: Internet Dependency

Some QR code systems require an Internet connection to verify the code against a database, but offline verification methods can be developed to ensure uninterrupted access.

Challenge: Scalability

As your organization grows, so does the need for more complex access control. QR code systems must be scalable to adapt to growing security needs, which can be achieved through modular software design.

Challenge: Environmental Factors

Outdoor scanning stations may be affected by weather conditions like rain or extreme sunlight. Weatherproofing the scanning devices can mitigate this issue.

Mammoth Security and QR Codes for Access Control

To sum it up, QR codes offer secure, efficient, and cost-effective solutions to entry management challenges that are easy to implement and control.

To learn more about implementing QR codes as a part of an existing or planned access control installation, reach out to the knowledgeable security team at Mammoth Security. Click to contact us and fill out the form for a 100% free security consultation and site survey with a friendly expert from our team.




In access control systems, QR codes work as digital credentials. A unique QR code is generated for each authorized individual. When this code is scanned at an entry point by a specialized reader or smartphone, the system verifies the code against a database to either allow or restrict access.

In the context of access control, static QR codes are fixed and can be used multiple times, often in less sensitive areas. Dynamic QR codes change periodically or each time they are scanned, adding an extra layer of security, making them ideal for high-security environments like corporate offices.

The advantages of using QR codes in access control include enhanced security through encryption and dynamic codes, cost-effectiveness by eliminating the need for expensive hardware, quick and easy setup, user-friendly experience, and contactless entry.

To set up a QR code-based access control system, you'll need a QR code generator, a database to store the codes, and scanners for verification. Once these components are in place, the system is ready for use.

In residential access control, QR codes are used in gated communities and apartment buildings to manage secure and efficient entry. They offer a convenient and user-friendly way to control access.

In a corporate setting, QR codes enhance security by offering an efficient way to manage employee access, track attendance, and integrate with other systems like payroll. They are ideal for high-security environments.

In event access control, QR codes speed up the entry process and reduce the risk of unauthorized access. They are particularly useful in managing large crowds and ensuring secure entry.

Challenges associated with using QR codes in access control include the potential for code duplication, user error in scanning, technical glitches, data security concerns, and limited device compatibility. However, these challenges are manageable and often have straightforward solutions.



I’m not just another sales guy. I’m a security expert ready to discuss your security strategy one-on-one.

Let’s discuss your security strategy and get you a tailored solution that will perfectly fit your security expectations.

Get your FREE copy of ‘Top 10 Questions to Ask Before Purchasing A Camera System’