Section: Facilities
Policy Number: 2-20
Policy Name: University Key/Access Card Control Policy and Procedures
Date: February 1, 1980
Revisions: June 5, 1989; October 14, 1992; April 1, 1996; August 15, 2002; July 1, 2005


    To protect the property and privacy of the University, and of individuals assigned to use University facilities, by limiting access to such owned or leased facilities to assigned individuals and to their supervisors.


    1. It is the policy of the University of Delaware to issue building and room keys/access cards to faculty, staff, resident students, authorized non-resident students, and persons or organizations with contractual agreements with the University.

    2. All keys/access cards are the property of the University and must be returned upon termination of employment. Obsolete or unneeded keys must be returned to the Lock Shop for disposal.

    3. Individuals as specified in II. A. must be issued the least number of key/access cards at the lowest level in the locking system hierarchy that is necessary to provide the required access.

    4. This policy and its enforcement are the responsibility of the Facilities department, and are implemented through the appropriate unit administrator (Vice President, Dean, Chairperson or Director). It is the responsibility of this unit administrator to maintain systematic and effective control of all keys/access cards for rooms and/or buildings primarily under the control and jurisdiction of that college, department or administrative area.

    5. Unit administrators are responsible for issuing and tracking keys/access cards and maintaining accurate records. Keys/access cards are issued in the strict trust that proper measures will be taken to ensure their safekeeping. Loss of keys/access cards can result in great financial loss to the University and expose University community members to unnecessary risk.

    6. If an individual loses a key/access card or it is stolen, the individual must immediately report this to the Department of Public Safety Communications Center at 831-2222 and also notify the unit administrator.

    7. The Facilities department is the authorized agent for installation, maintenance, and control of all locks and keys/access cards for the University buildings. This responsibility includes design of lock systems, maintenance of core, keys/access cards and records.

    8. It is a violation of University policy for any individual to duplicate any key/access card issued by the University. Only the Facilities department is authorized to approve duplication of keys/access cards. All duplicates must be made and recorded in the Facilities department.

    9. The Facilities department is responsible for maintenance and service of all locks including periodic replacement and upgrading in order to maintain proper security. However, if it becomes necessary to recore a building or an area within a building because of lost or stolen keys/access cards, the departments responsible for the lost or stolen keys/access cards will be charged costs for new cores and issuance of new keys/access cards.

    10. Whenever possible, the key/access card policy for leased facilities operated by the University will be the same as that of University owned facilities.

      1. University Levels Of Key Access

        Type of Key / Access Card Level of Access Authorized Users Rules of Issuance
        Room Individual offices, residence hall rooms, laboratories, classrooms, and suites Room occupant Issued by appropriate unit administrator. For specific procedures for residential buildings, see Facilities Key and Access Card Policy.
        Access Card Specific door or parking lot gates Building occupant or parking lot assignee Issued by appropriate unit administrator or Facilities department.
        Exterior Building Individual key for individual buildings Building occupant Issued by appropriate unit administrator. Residence hall exterior keys are issued to Lock Shop and Public Safety personnel only. Issued daily on rings in Academic buildings.
        Residence Hall Access Card Specific exterior or entrance door, primarily in residential buildings Building occupants; Residence Life, Facilities and Conference Staff See Facilities Key and Access Card Procedures.
        Residence Hall Alarm Controls audible alarm switch for Residence Hall Access Controlled doors in residential buildings Lock Shop and Public Safety personnel Requires approval of the Director of Public Safety and/or Director of Maintenance and Operations.
        Exterior Building Master All exterior entrances to academic buildings by zone Limited to Facilities personnel such as night mechanics Issued by Lock Shop or Public Safety personnel on a limited basis. Exterior building master for residential buildings are not available for issue.
        Partial Building Master / or Building Master Multiple rooms within a designated area in a single building Vice Presidents, Deans, Chairs, Directors and other unit administrators for areas under their control Issued by appropriate unit administrator. Issued to Facilities staff daily on key rings.
        Special Master Custodial closets, mechanical rooms, electrical rooms, and telephone rooms Mechanics, custodians and technicians Issued by Facilities department to designated personnel.
        Area Master Exterior and interior doors in zone Lock Shop personnel No Issuance to other than Lock Shop personnel.
        Off Master Special high value areas Room occupant only Requires approval of Facilities Director of Maintenance and Operations.

      2. Procedures

        1. Keys/access cards will be issued to University employees upon request of the appropriate unit administrator. The individual to whom the key/access card is issued will be held responsible and accountable for said key/access card.

        2. For specific procedures for keys and access cards in the residential buildings, see Facilities Key and Access Card Procedures.

        3. Duplication of a key/access card, or the possession of a duplicate key/access card, will result in disciplinary procedures.

        4. If an individual loses a key/access card or it is stolen, the individual must immediately report this to the Department of Public Safety Communications Center at 831-2222 and also notify the unit administrator.

        5. Loss or misuse of a key/access card may result in disciplinary procedures up to and including discharge.

        6. Facilities department or Public Safety personnel must be present anytime a PDI alarm box is deactivated.

Submitted by: Offices of Facilities and Public Safety