Key Control and Access Authorization Policy
Purpose/Scope of the Policy
It is the policy of the University Library to promote the security of library personnel and
patrons and to provide appropriate access to Library facilities while ensuring the safety of its
facilities and collections.
This policy describes the control of the use and possession of keys to Library facilities,
including (A) general provisions, (B) design of keying systems, (C) fabrication, (D) Library
responsibility for issuance, (E) eligibility for issuance – exterior keys, (F) eligibility for
issuance – interior keys, (G) eligibility for access to high security spaces, (H) key and building
security, and (I) responsibilities relating to lost keys. This policy applies to all keys,
including keys for all doors and cabinets keyed by the F&S Locksmith Shop for use in the
following facilities: the Main Library Building , ACES, Grainger, Oak Street , and the
In this document, the term "key" or "keys" refers to the means by which one gains entry into a
secured entry point. A “key” may be used in reference to traditional lock-and-key arrangements in
doors, swipe cards or other non-mechanical means of gaining access, or access codes for spaces with
additional security needs. In some cases, multiple types of keys may be required for single
locations depending upon the operational needs of the unit.
Key Control Officer
The Key Control Officer is the individual within the Library given authority for authorizing,
distributing, and collecting keys for all Library-managed spaces.
The Key Holder is the individual to whom a key is issued and is, therefore, the individual
ultimately responsible for the key’s security. If the key is lost, the individual to whom the key
is issued is considered the responsible individual regardless of employment status (faculty, AP,
staff, GA, student, or carrel patron). In the case of unit keys, the individual considered the key
holder is the unit head.
Detailed Policy Statement
Unless otherwise authorized by the Office of Library Facilities, the F&S Locksmith Shop
fabricates and duplicates all authorized keys and performs all authorized lock work for campus
facilities. Locks may not be changed by external locksmiths without the express permission of the
F&S Locksmith Shop and authorization from the Office of Library Facilities. To ensure
compliance with applicable fire and life safety codes, non-University locks or keys shall not be
used on any Library facilities. Authorization for the fabrication of all keys is the
responsibility of the Key Control Officer.
The Library is responsible for issue and control of keys to its spaces. Keys to Library
facilities may only be issued in accordance with the Key Eligibility Criteria below. The Library
must recover all keys from personnel who are separating from employment or transferring to another
unit or activity within the Library or on campus at the time of separation. The Library shall
document all key transactions in a database located on a restricted access, shared drive. The
Office of Library Facilities shall maintain all paper records about key authorization. The Office
of Library Facilities shall manage a database of individuals holding keys to Library facilities.
The database will permit searching by name, department, employment category (faculty, staff, GA,
F&S, security, contractor, etc.), building code, key number, room numbers that the keys open,
issue date, and return date. Keys shall only be issued to the assigned key holder. Library
Faculty and Academic Professionals Staff members in administrative units (Systems Office,
Business Office, etc.) with duties requiring such access Individuals on the Emergency
Contact List Staff and graduate assistants with opening and closing duties or other
responsibilities that require access during non-operating hours, e.g., emptying the bookdrop during
breaks, etc. Employees of the U.S. Postal Service Employees of the Lincoln Trails Delivery
Service Appropriate F&S staff Library Security staff Appropriate CITES
staff Staff and graduate assistants without opening or closing duties Library staff claiming
need based upon flextime requirements Non-library faculty Eligibility for exterior building
keys to Library buildings will be limited to the following categories of individuals: Eligibility
for exterior building keys to Library buildings will not be granted to the following categories of
individuals: Units with multi-user key sets may petition the Office of Library Facilities for a key
box. Keys issued for such use shall be stored in the key box and a sign-out sheet shall be
maintained by the units with two permanent employees being given access to the key box and
authority to sign out keys. Keys and key sets thus maintained are not to be “issued” locally to
student employees working in the unit. Such actions will result in removal of the key box and all
associated key sets from the unit. Individually issued keys must be signed out through the Office
of Library Facilities (per III.D.6). Faculty, staff, graduate students, and student employees will
only be provided with keys for their units, unless their position explicitly requires access for
collection/facility security purposes, i.e., emergency and disaster response, facilities
management. Keys shall not be issued to one individual for the use of others working within
a unit on either a temporary or a permanent basis. Such practices may lead to revoking the access
privileges of both the key holder and its user. Graduate assistants and student employees will only
be issued keys if sufficient justification is provided, i.e., opening and closing responsibilities.
UIUC faculty and graduate students and visiting scholars sponsored by a UIUC academic
department can request a carrel assignment in the Main Library Bookstacks. An eligible patron may
fill out a form to request a carrel. These forms are available in the Circulation Office (Room 203)
of the Main Library.
Patrons are assigned a key for the duration of their carrel use and are required to return the
key when they are done with the carrel and/or when they leave the university.
Library personnel shall be granted access to high-security spaces on a limited basis based upon
job responsibility and security need. Authorization may be given by the Key Control Officer
only after consultation with the director of said units. The Library reserves the right to
restrict authorization at its discretion. Keys to exhibit cases and other means of securing rare
and/or valuable materials shall not be left unsecured (e.g., labeled in unsecured desk drawers
local to the cases) or in areas that would facilitate unauthorized access to the cases. Library
keys shall not be left unattended.
All students, faculty and staff are responsible for maintaining building security. Doors shall
not be propped open or left in an unlocked position during hours when the building is normally
closed to the public. Library faculty, staff, graduate assistants, and student employees
shall not unlock buildings or rooms for unknown individuals nor distribute keys or access codes to
unauthorized individuals. The Library will pursue a policy of re-keying exterior keys to Library
buildings biennially. The Library will pursue a policy of re-keying areas with significant
unmarked materials (Acquisitions, Asian, Binding, Cataloging, Gifts, Slavic, Rare Books, and
Archives) annually. After an initial re-keying, other interior library facilities will be
re-keyed a minimum of every four years or as needed. General Provisions Keying Systems Fabrication
Library Responsibility – Key Issuance & Recovery Eligibility for Issuance – Exterior Keys
Eligibility for Issuance – Interior Keys Eligibility for Access to High-Security Spaces Key and
Building Security Key-holder Responsibilities – Lost Keys and Re-keying Library Facilities
Individuals possessing keys to campus facilities are responsible for said keys.
All lost Library keys must be reported immediately to the unit head and to the Office of Library
Facilities. All lost Main Bookstacks carrel keys must be reported immediately to the Circulation
Office (Room 203) in the Main Library.
If the loss of keys is discovered after business hours, the employee will report the event
directly to the University Division of Public Safety and follow up with the Office of Library
Facilities on the next business day. The Main Bookstacks carrel-holder must report it to the
Circulation Office (Room 203) the next business day.
The Library accepts responsibility for any costs associated with re-keying due to loss of keys
or other methods of access. However, key-holders will be assessed a fee of $25.00 per key lost with
a maximum of $200.00 in total fines.
In the event of a key being lost, the Office of Library Facilities will determine if locks are
to be replaced or keys changed.
Library Emergency Response and Security Task Force – March – April 2002 (rev. June – July
UIUC Operations and Maintenance Review – May – June 2002
UIUC Police Review – May 2002
University Library Administrative Council – July 2002
University Library Emergency Response and Security Task Force – March/April 2005
University Library Office of Services – January 2007