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ID Cards: Card Readers and Access Control Systems

In September 2020, the ID Card Office will begin issuing Stanford ID cards without the magnetic stripe, or magstripe, on the back.

Stanford ID cards with magstripes will continue to work with the magstripe card readers operated by University IT (UIT) Campus Card Services and found at many campus buildings, dining halls, and cafes. However, the magstripes will no longer work with readers not supported by UIT.

Departments and groups that use readers not supported by UIT can contact Card Services Director Jay Kohn ( to work on an alternative solution for their location.


Departments and facilities on campus use card reading systems on doors, turnstiles, and elevators to control access to buildings and rooms. Campus Card systems are centrally-maintained by University IT. University IT also coordinates installation and maintenance of new systems and card readers.

Card readers include the familiar "swipe" type as well as proximity readers. Access can be restricted by day of the week and time of day, and can be set up to provide access on an individual basis, or by department or class list. Scheduling can be centrally programmed by University IT, or through subscriber workstations.

Get started

Card Services provides customized 1-on-1 training sessions on the access control system. If you don't need training immediately, contact Jay Kohn and ask to join the next new activation session with another group. New activation sessions are scheduled as needed.

To learn more about building access services or to order access readers, submit a Help ticket.

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Last modified March 13, 2020