Cisco Surrenders Access Control

Author: Brian Rhodes, Published on Apr 11, 2016

After a history of errors, Cisco has finally raised the white flag in access.

But in a smart move, they have partnered with a veteran access brand, Identiv, to take things over.

In this note, we examine how Cisco has changed things up, look at the new Identiv replacement, see what options existing Cisco users have, and evaluate potential market impact.

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Comments (9)

"While Cisco seems bent to always underestimate the complexity and nuance of physical security"

From speaking with them at this show and on previous occasions, it is actually worse than that. The typical Cisco thought process is that bad cameras or controllers are not a problem, because the value is in their integration with the network, other Cisco products, etc.

The problem, of course, is this is like a chef who thinks they can cook a great meal with spam and rotten eggs. You might be a great chef but the ingredients play a critical role in the final meal.

Hey don't pick on SPAM. Rotten eggs, maybe.

Still the Lindsay Lohan of the physical security industry.

I was going to quote the same line... "While Cisco seems bent to always underestimate the complexity and nuance of physical security"

It seems like you have two opposing forces within Cisco, which is not unbelievable when you have a behemoth sized company. At the very least, most Cisco management seems only interested in Physical Security as a segue to sell their IT network line products, with one side saying, "It's just security stuff, we know how to do this because we're Cisco" and the other side trying to say back, "No, this is a different animal, and it's not the same thing and we need to try something better."

I wondered if they were ever going to do something with that.

It's not like Cisco has to go cold calling; they have existing customers who know them, like them, trust them -- and are already in the habit of giving them money. And since Cisco also gains from the infrastructure *around* the physical security sale -- switches, routers, storage (TONS of storage!) -- their margins on the PhySec stuff don't have to be all that ginormous. Regardless, it's not like Cisco customers are the type to shop around for the lowest price. All Cisco has to do is offer a quality product! Unfortunately, they insist upon developing/owning it themselves instead of assembling a best-of-breed lineup of what this industry already has to offer. It's the Cisco ego that gets in their way.

However, it is unlikely they would ever hire a product director from outside their industry that would dare tell them that.

And if they can't figure out access control, they'd best stay away from IP video anyway -- it's a lot more 1s and 0s.

Has this arrangement now ended too?

http://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/products/collateral/physical-security/physical-access-manager/eos-eol-notice-c51-738080.html

Hello Graham:

We've reached out to Identiv and Cisco for comment, I'll post feedback when they respond.

Identiv responded:

"We did make some changes to how the system components were bundled and ordered through the Cisco internal system, which required that new internal Cisco part numbers be created.

The only way Cisco could do that was to discontinue the existing part numbers, and create new ones.

What you saw was the announcement for the discontinuation of the part numbers that were changing. Their EOL does not reflect the new Cisco part numbers that were created to replace those that were discontinued."

and went on to affirm the partnership in the near future:

"ICPAM is and will remain a product sold only through Cisco and their channel partners. The current offering from Identiv includes the ICPAM software, our edge controllers, Identiv TS readers and cards. By end of January be announcing an expansion to that line."

In summary, Identiv says this EOL is a part-number administrative change only.

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