The money you invest in your security system is the money you invest in your safety and security. Unfortunately, the expense is often considered unnecessary—until something unfortunate happens. The underinvested are in one of two situations: the unsecured and under-secured.
An unsecured facility is likely the result of oversight or budgetary constraints. In large organizations, oversights happen when buildings are renovated, or small buildings are added. The security team may be completely unaware or informed only after construction is completed.
A storage shed at a small business or a temporary classroom on campus, for example, may be added and remain unsecured by an intrusion detection system or video surveillance cameras.
An under-secured facility is likely the result of an insufficient budget allowance or the failure to identify a risk that could have been mitigated with proper countermeasures. Cost-cutting measures, for example, can reduce the number of installed security cameras.
What’s the cost?
The surface cost may be the loss of an asset or damage to expensive equipment. The true cost, however, goes far deeper than replacements and repairs.
A stolen asset must be replaced. The National Retail Security Survey, conducted annually by the National Retail Federation trade group, revealed that just in the 2016 retail market, theft accounted for nearly $50 billion in unnecessary expenses. For 2018, some estimates reach $100 billion globally.
Retail shrink is one of the most obvious examples, but if you’re not in retail, consider some not-so-obvious impacts of being under-secured or unsecured.
Whether operational safety or fear of an active assailant situation, offices, venues, schools, and houses of worship must now consider added security measures to ensure a safe environment. Organizations and associations, like NFPA, are reviewing and adopting guidelines for employee safety and security related to active assailant events. For example, consider reading the proposed NFPA 3000 guideline which is in final review.
While cybersecurity is a top priority for IT professionals, security departments can assist by securing sensitive data centers and remote equipment closets. Easy access to network devices and USB ports is a risk for malware and data theft. And, it’s not just a cybersecurity problem. Accidental damage and disconnects can occur when the wrong people have access to IT spaces.
Loss of productivity
Equipment loss and property damage are disruptors. Disruptions diminish efficiency and almost always cost money. If, for example, an electrical installation company relies on copper wire for installation projects, the theft of that wire can halt projects until new inventory can be acquired. Similarly, if machinery is damaged in a warehouse or distribution center, work stops at that machine until the area is safe and the damage is repaired.
Brand name value
In some cases, the brand itself is damaged by the data breach or project delay. A breach in data is a breach in trust. Employees and clients rely on the organization to hold their data securely for their own safety and privacy. Clients may easily decide to take their business elsewhere if they feel their private information or safety is at risk due to ineffective data security.
There’s not a one-size-fits-all technology solution that will guarantee security. However, experienced security organizations offer an excellent advantage. A security professional can visit your facility to collaborate with administrators, security staff, IT departments, and other key stakeholders. The resulting plan will be a tailored and comprehensive security solution.