[Noisebridge-discuss] Problem: people seeing NB as a backup shelter

Jeffrey Carl Faden jeffreyatw at gmail.com
Fri May 9 23:31:43 UTC 2014

We have been discussing this for a few hours on Slack and #noisebridge and
have come up with a few solutions. I thought I'd share a few ideas that
have been thrown around so far.

Here's the current system, for those watching from home. At all hours of
the day:
- Someone can use a key to get into the building and space.
- Someone can use a keycode to get into the building and space.
- Someone can buzz the intercom and be allowed in by someone inside who has
a keycode. (or they can walk downstairs)

And now, for some new ideas...

Idea #1: Move the keypad from the gate to the door. Keypad only active
during newly instilled associate/regular members hours. Physical key, or
someone buzzing you in, required to enter the building.
- Robotically enforced "members-only" hours, instead of human-enforced like
in the past
- Semblance of 2-factor auth, if you ignore the ubiquity of keys and

Idea #2: idea #1, plus replacing gate lock with RFID sensor.
Additional benefits:
- RFID fob can be revoked if shared, while key cannot (or it's much harder
to do so).

Idea #3: keep lock/keypad as-is, install members-hours-only RFID sensor at
Additional benefits:
- No need to change existing setup.
- RFID sensor is less likely to be tampered with.

In all three cases, it will be less easy (but nothing is impossible) for a
random person looking for a way to abuse the space to find their way
inside. Of course, much like how things are now, there's a significant
amount of security theater that goes into these "solutions." There is no
silver bullet.
- In all forms, someone can still shadow someone else being let in.
- With idea #2, replacing the lock with an RFID sensor could inconvenience
other tenants, and RFID sensor could be subject to on-the-street vandalism.
- In the past, people have complained about their access/whereabouts being
tracked by being tied to an RFID fob.
- Anyone could use the elevator to get past any form of authentication at
the door.
-- The elevator is either off-limits, cost-prohibitive, or both to add an
additional keypad or sensor to.

Either way, this is what we've been discussing. If you didn't read the
previous paragraph, I said that this is all ultimately in the name of
security theater. But I think they're all improvements on what we have now.

If you're interested in discussing these (beyond the discussions we've
already been having on this list, on Slack, on Freenode, and now on this
Etherpad I made the mistake of creating), please consider coming to a
meeting of the Security Working Group. I'll defer to Naomi or someone in
#security-wg on Slack for details about when that will happen.

If you haven't read the antepenultimate paragraph or the one prior to it,
this is all in the name of security theater. Please do not complain about
holes in any of these systems that already exist within our current one.
Thanks again!


On Fri, May 9, 2014 at 4:01 PM, Johny Radio <johnyradio at gmail.com> wrote:

> Ya gotta love the "Let's somebody else do it." Classic.
> Jeffrey Carl Faden <jeffreyatw at gmail.com> wrote:
> This thread is taking a worrying turn toward "wishful thinking" and away
> from "doing".
> On Fri, May 9, 2014 at 1:08 PM, Naomi Most <pnaomi at gmail.com> wrote:
> >> >> Let's do that.  Who's around who likes installing keypads?
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