Key Control and Access Policy: SPS0001
Effective: May 6, 1997

Key Control and Access

(Policy SPS0001)

I. Purpose/Scope of the Policy

It is the policy of UCSC to promote the security of campus personnel and appropriate access to University property. This policy describes the control of the use and possession of keys to campus facilities, including (A) general provision (B) design of keying systems, (C) fabrication, (D) responsibility for issuance, (E) inventory and deposits, (F) eligibility for possession, (G) key and building security, and (H) responsibilities relating to lost keys. This policy applies to all keys, including keys for all doors and all gates, as well as for cabinets which were originally keyed through the lock shop.

II. Detailed Policy Statement

A. General Provision

Unauthorized fabrication, duplication, possession, or use of keys to premises owned by the University of California is a crime (California Penal Code 469), and is also a violation of University standards of Student Conduct. University keys are the property of the University of California and may be recovered at any time.

B. Keying Systems

Physical Plant creates keying systems that will ensure security and reasonable convenience to units occupying buildings or facilities and maintains up-to-date records of all keying systems and authorized usage.

C. Fabrication

The Physical Plant Lock Shop fabricates all keys and performs all lock work for campus facilities, except for work performed by on-site contractors or contracting agents under the direction of the office of Physical Planning & Construction or the Physical Plant unit. Locks may not be changed by external locksmiths without the express permission of the Physical Plant Lock Shop.

UCSC keys may not be duplicated except by the Physical Plant Lock Shop.

To ensure compliance with applicable fire and life safety codes, non-University locks or keys shall not be used. All standard Lock Shop-issued keypad locks shall have the key bypass keyed to a keypad master system.

D. Responsibility of Units--Issuance

A unit assigned space in a building shall be responsible for issue and control of keys to its assigned spaces. Keys to University facilities may only be issued in accordance with the Key Eligibility Criteria below. Unit heads may delegate the issuance of keys only as necessary and in accordance with the Key Eligibility Criteria.

Units may be responsible for any costs associated with re-keying due to violation of this policy by members of the unit.

Units must recover all keys from personnel who are separating from employment or transferring to another unit or activity.

The unit shall document the issue and return of each key on a "Key Use Authorization and Acceptance Form," or may incorporate these forms or their wording into the forms or systems currently used by the various units to authorize and track their keys and shall maintain the files in the unit.

Keys needed by contractors or other non-University users (not associated with the unit to whom the space has been assigned) will be issued by the Physical Planning & Construction or Physical Plant project manager, using a standard Work Order form.

a.Terms of the contract will include a specific return date, beyond which the University may, without notice, take the necessary action to recover the keys or change the locks to assure security of University property.

b.All costs of key recovery and re-keying will be the responsibility of the person or firm to which the keys were issued.

E. Inventory and Deposits

Units shall maintain accurate records of all keys assigned to the unit, including names of individuals to whom keys are issued and dates of issue and return or loss. Copies of records pertaining to Grand Master and Great Grand Master keys shall be sent to the Lock Shop for their records.

Units shall conduct yearly reviews of key control records.

Units that consider a fee deposit necessary to the management of key security may collect a $40 refundable key deposit from casual users (not employees) of keys (see UCSC Procedure ACG0010: Establishing and Administering Cash Funds). The deposit may not be collected from faculty or staff employees associated with the unit or other University employees who need the key to perform their employment functions.

Any forfeited key deposits may be used for re-keying or replacement key costs.

F. Key Eligiblility Criteria






Great Grand Master(operates multiple locks, for multiple buildings.)

Police Department

Police Chief

Fire Department

Fire Chief

Environmental Health & Safety

EH&S Director

Physical Plant Senior Superintendents & Supervisors

Physical Plant Director

Physical Planning & Construction Architects, Engineers & Inspectors

Asst. V.C., Physical Planning & Construction

Exceptions made by Vice Chancellor, BAS

Grand Master(operates all locks within one building, "Building Master.")

Physical Plant custodial & maintenance staff

Physical Plant Director

Building Coordinators

Vice Chancellors & Deans

Division technical & maintenance staff


Master(operates one group of locks within a building.)

Employees as needed to perform their duties.

Unit heads

Change (operates one lock, or two or more locks keyed alike within a building.)

Employees may be issued a key to their office.

Unit heads

Student employees as needed for the performance of their duties. Students may be issued keys when needed for access to labs, etc.

Building Entrance (also a change key)

Employees & students who must work other than normally scheduled hours.

Unit heads

G. Key and Building Security

1.  Great Grand Master and Grand Master keys shall be physically secured when not in personal use. Keys must be locked in either:

a.  An unmovable key safe or

b.  An unmarked locked storage cabinet/drawer in a locked area.

2.  University keys shall not be left unattended or in unlocked vehicles. Keys left in vehicles must be locked out of view, and shall be removed and physically secured when not in use.

3.  Great Grand Master and Grand Master keys shall not be taken off University property unless the keys are to be used at a remote University facility. Departments are responsible for maintaining a check-out system for such keys.

4.  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.

5.  University employees shall not unlock buildings or rooms for another individual unless the individual has a valid Room Permit (issued by the Registrar's office or the unit controlling the area) and proper identification, or is known by the employee to have legitimate access to the room/building.

H. Lost Keys

1.  Individuals possessing keys to campus facilities are responsible for such keys. Campus units have the authority to charge such individuals for the cost of key replacement and/or re-keying of locks caused by loss of keys to campus facilities assigned to such individuals.

2.  All lost University keys must be reported immediately to the issuing unit. The unit will report the loss of Great Grand Master and Grand Master keys to the University Police Department immediately.

a.  If the loss of Great Grand Master or Grand Master keys is discovered after business hours, the employee will report the event directly to the University Police Department.

B.  Whenever a Great Grand Master or Grand Master key is lost or stolen, the police chief, physical plant director, auditor, and risk manager will assess the situation and make a recommendation to the Division of Finance, Operations and Administration (FOA) vice chancellor regarding whether or not to re-key, or to implement any other security precautions.

3.  The Vice Chancellor FOA will make the decision regarding re-keying.

4.  The unit will report the loss of any University key to the Lock Shop as soon as practical.

III. Definitions

Key Holder;  A person to whom a key has been issued.

Key Types 

Great Grand Master Key: A key that operates multiple locks for multiple buildings.

Grand Master Key: A key that operates all locks within a single building. Also known as a "building master" key.

Master Key: A key that operates one group of locks within a building.

change key: A key that operates one lockor tow or more locks that are keyed alikewithin a building.

Building Entrance Key: A specific type of change key.

IV. Getting Help

The University Police department provides training and assistance to campus units (including help with completing forms, carrying out procedures, or interpreting policy).

If you need help with ...

Contact ...

... determining the type of key that is appropriate for your area or the overall key plan for your area

Campus Lock Shop, x2165.

... obtaining a key

Your local departmental unit head (or other responsible official as outlined in this policy).

... reporting a lost keyother than a grand master or great grand master key

Your local departmental unit head.

... reporting a lost grand master or great grand master key

Report it to the University Police immediately! x2231.

... interpreting the key control and access policy

University Police department, x2231.

V. Applicability and Authority

This policy on Key Control and Access applies to all campus units, except the following:

University Extension off-campus sites on lease/rental property (UC Extension policies apply to such sites).

This campuswide policy is new and supersedes any previously developed departmental policies.

The University Police is the campus authority for the Key Control and Access Policy. This policy was reviewed and approved by the Chancellor on May 6, 1997. Next review date is July 1999.

VI. Related Policies/References for More Information

Related Policies and Procedures

UCSC Policy SPS0003: Installation and Use of Security Alarms

UCSC Procedure SPS0004: Requesting New or Modified Security Alarm Service

UCSC Procedure ACG0010: Establishing and Administering Cash Funds


UCSC "Student Rule Book"

Section 40.0 et seq "Policy on Use of University Properties"

Section 100 et seq "Policy on Student Conduct and Discipline"

Implementation Procedures

UCSC Procedure SPS0002: Obtaining and Returning Keys to Campus Facilities

Related Forms

Key Use Authorization and Acceptance Form