iCLASS® is a proprietary technology made by HID Global. iCLASS cards combine magnetic stripe functionality with a contactless smart card. Based on RFID, these smart cards use a high frequency radio technology, versus the low frequencies used in proximity cards, to communicate with door card readers.

iCLASS has been specifically designed to make access control more versatile, powerful and secure. It ensures high security with mutual authentication between smart card and reader, encrypted data transfer and 64-bit diversified keys for read/write contactless smart card capabilities. Typical applications include access control, network log-on security, cashless vending, time and attendance, event management and biometric identification.

Because the iCLASS® cards do not contain a power source (passive RFID), they must be presented within two to four inches of the reader. Each card has an antenna and chip embedded in it to facilitate door access. If the chip is broken or the antenna severed, the card will no longer function.