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How to configure anti-passback with Mercury hardware?
How to configure anti-passback with Mercury hardware?

Strengthen security at your office or community by enabling Anti-Passback.

Ankita Chakraborty avatar
Written by Ankita Chakraborty
Updated over a week ago

How to Exempt Special Users From Anti-Passback

In an access control system, the anti-passback feature plays the role of that invisible watch guard who stops anyone who tries to obstruct a specific access sequence. With anti-passback enabled, a distinctive pattern (in-out-in-out-in-out) applies to both the entry and exit readers that must be followed by an individual user to gain unhindered entry and exit. Anti-passback prevents a cardholder from using his/her card twice at the same access point.

There are two types of Anti-Passback modes :

1. Area-based Anti-Passback

The area-based anti-passback mode applies to a set of readers - 'Entry' and 'Exit' readers of a defined area. In this mode, the system tracks each card that enters through the 'Entry' reader and it does not allow the same card to swipe at the reader consecutively. The user must first swipe their credential at the 'Exit' reader in order to re-utilize the 'Entry' reader.

2. Reader-based Anti-Passback

Reader-based anti-passback mode applies to an individual reader. Typically, this mode prevents multiple people from entering using the same card at the same reader. Reader-based anti-passback always has a time delay. The card ID and the time of the last granted access request are stored within the reader. If the new access request is for the same card ID, the time delay is checked. If the elapsed time since the last granted access request is less than the time delay, the user is not granted access. In the parking lot application, there may be a time-delay of 10 minutes in which that parking pass may not be used. In this configuration, if the user is granted access to another reader, the history at the first card reader is retained and anti-passback rules still apply at the first reader. For example, the user presents the card at Gate 1 at 11:42 AM and is granted access. The user then presents the card at Gate 2 at 11:43 AM and is granted access. The history of the card would be not removed from the reader at Gate 1 and the user would not be able to go back to Gate 1, present the ID card, and be granted access.

How to Configure Area-based Anti-Passback

1. Create an area

  • Click on the 'Areas' tab in your Genea admin dashboard.

  • Create a new area by clicking on the '+ Add' button.

Let's say you have four doors - two for Entry and two for Exit - and they all belong to a common area. In that case, you just need to create one new area. Create a new area by clicking on the '+ Add' button.

  • Give the new area a name and description and click "Save".

2. Attach a controller to the area

  • Once, the area has been created, click on it to attach a controller to the area.

  • Click on "Attach Controller". Select a controller from the dropdown, doors for which are to be the part of the specific area. Click "Save".

3. Add readers to the area

  • For area-based Anti-Passback, you will need a set of 'Entry' and 'Exit' readers. Identify the readers to be defined as Entry and Exit from the attached controller to the area, based on your area requirements.

  • Once the readers have been identified, start adding them under the "Entry Doors" and "Exit Doors" sections of the area.

4. Select the Anti-Passback Violation Action.

When an anti-passback violation occurs on a specific reader, you can choose to apply a violation action. You can choose the action for each entry and exit reader of the area while creating them.

  1. Soft Anti-Passback :

    This will only log the APB violation in your system. The user will still be allowed to use the same credential at the same door consecutively. Admins will be notified about the violation.

  2. Hard Anti-Passback :

    This will log the APB violation and will deny the offending user access to whichever entry point they have consecutively tried to enter or exit. Admins will be notified about the violation. Admins will be given the option to "Clear Anti-Passback" for the violated card so that users can regain access to the area if need be.

  3. Timed Anti-passback

    a. Timed (Second)
    b. Timed (Minutes)

    When this anti-passback gets applied, a cardholder can re-use their access credentials only after a specified time on the last accessed reader. Timed Anti-passback is generally used in organizations where there is no provision for exit readers on turnstiles/flap-barriers, and the security admin wants to stop the use of an Access-card by multiple users. You can define the time-lapse of violation either in minutes or seconds.

How to Configure Reader-based Anti-Passback

Reader-based Anti-Passback is only applied to a single reader. To configure reader-based anti-passback, follow the steps below:

1. Click on the 'Hardware' tab in your Genea admin dashboard. Next, click the name of the appropriate reader upon which you'd like to enable anti-passback.

2. Scroll down to the Anti-Passback section. Click "Edit" and select the 'Reader-based' anti-passback option from the dropdown. Then, select the appropriate 'Violation Action". You can define the time-lapse of violation either in minutes or seconds. Lastly, select the appropriate 'Timeout' interval. Click "Save".

How To Clear Anti-Passback Violations

Anti-Passback violations are tracked using the user's credentials. If you have selected either the 'Hard Anti-Passback' violations, then you will need to clear the credential's violation status so that its user can regain access.

  • To clear a violation, navigate to the offending user's profile within your Genea admin dashboard.

  • Under the user's Cards section, click on the 'Actions' option next to their credential(s), then select 'Clear Anti-Passback.' This activity will be logged for tracking purposes.

If you need to clear credential violations for multiple users, you can perform a mass clear.

  • To perform a mass clear, click on the 'Control Center' tab of your Genea admin dashboard, and navigate to the 'Emergency' section.

  • Next to the 'Clear Anti-Passback' option, click on the 'All Cards' button. This activity will be logged for tracking purposes in your system.

How To Exempt Users from the Anti-Passback Feature

Do you have certain users at your property that need full, unrestricted access? If so, you can permanently exempt certain users from being affected by the Anti-Passback feature.

1) To exempt a user from Anti-Passback, navigate to the user's profile.

2) Click the specific key upon which you would like to grant an anti-passback exemption.

3) Select the box next to 'Anti-Passback Exempt' and press the 'Save' button. Once saved, the user's key will be exempt from all anti-passback violations.

If you have any questions or need assistance setting up the Anti-Passback features at your property, please reach out to Genea Support at

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