New Technology Challenge: Vendor Competency

technology

It’s important to set clear expectations. Some vendors can perform a Security Vulnerability Assessment (SVA), for example, while others more suited to hardware installation. And when new technology is on the horizon, it’s important to review vendor roles and responsibilities.

Security Vulnerability Assessment

SVAs are performed by companies, usually licensed or certified to do so, that are highly skilled with surveys involving combined technologies. They compare the current system to a set of expected and potential risks. SVAs can be performed once or on a scheduled basis, depending upon changes that modify risk.

Site Survey

Site surveys typically follow an SVA as part of an overall security deployment strategy by technology experts in one or more specific technical fields. For example, a security integrator may bring a manufacturer’s representative to a facility to assist with a site survey. The technologies required to secure a facility are complex; however, the individual site survey is not likely to consider all aspects of the organization’s risk like an SVA.

Demonstration

Following a site survey, the technical experts from the manufacturer and integrator may perform a system demonstration for the Security Director. This is an opportunity to evaluate the proposed system prior to purchase, ensure that it fits within the SVA-recommended security strategy, and demonstrate that the system functions within the organization’s operational and emergency response plan.

System Design

Once the demonstration is complete, and expectations are set, the security integrator will create a complete system design with assistance from the equipment manufacturer.

Installation

Following final design approval and system purchase, the security integrator will install the system.

Maintenance

Once installed, the system must be continually maintained. Most installation teams are responsible for maintenance as well, but some integrators have dedicated maintenance teams.

Bottom Line: Partnership

A security system is only as reliable as the weakest link in the project team. A qualified security integrator will clearly outline project performance expectations in conjunction with the Security Director. These expectations must satisfy the end-user’s expectations of integrator responsibility and involvement. Installation and maintenance teams should be regularly attending classes and obtaining pertinent certifications. The security integrator’s project management and sales teams must be well versed in modern technologies and should be able to anticipate the needs of the end user.

You can count on Securitronics to provide expert advice for your most demanding safety and security concerns.

Our Solutionists are dedicated problem-solvers, always ready to use new and innovative technologies to develop your plan and secure your property, assets, and personnel. Our goal is to build long-term, lasting partnerships of absolute trust and personalized services with the most skilled and talented security professionals.

Contact Securitronics today. 800.795.3747

On-Site Security Risk Assessment

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Imagine a facility constructed from day 1 with future security requirements as the top priority. Does that describe your security landscape?  Most likely not. The level of security installed on day 1 does not always reflect the security required of the organization later.

There’s often a mismatch between budget, specifier input, and end user operational requirements. Requirements change with facility capabilities and in response to prevalent threats. A facility that was once secure with cameras at the entrance, may now require security checkpoints at the property entrance and a perimeter fence detection system with cameras watching the property line. Organizations change, the world changes, and security technologies change in response.

Organizational changes

Expansion or reduction of the physical footprint of an organization is impacted by new construction projects. New projects may require alterations or upgrades to the existing systems. Prior to physical changes, a complete security risk assessment must be performed to uncover the new security requirements for the organization. Likewise, if a business changes its scope of operation, there may be the need to increase security. This may happen when cash flow changes or the potential hazard increases.

Environmental changes

If a local threat arises, it may impact a cluster of facilities. If a national or global threat arises, the entire vertical market must adopt new security measures, all of which require security risk assessments. For example, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) directs 16 specific critical infrastructure categories related to cyber, physical, and electronic security requirements. These requirements are reviewed and updated to reflect global security changes and their impact on specific industries.

Security technology changes

Improvements in security system technology are occurring at a staggering rate. Surveillance cameras are being produced with dramatically higher resolution capability. Access control systems are becoming more sophisticated, from card credentials to biometric readers. Legacy perimeter intrusion detection systems (PIDS) attached to fences are being replaced with modern power over Ethernet (PoE) devices and increased, smart sensitivity capabilities. When the mean time between failure (MTBF) for legacy security devices may have been as long as 15 years using analog technology, new IP based system devices may only have a three to five-year replacement cycle.

Action plan

These common scenarios present reasons to conduct a security risk assessment on a regularly scheduled basis in addition to when specific needs arise. Performing these assessments regularly can bring unrealized vulnerabilities to the surface.  These assessments should be conducted by security technology experts in conjunction with officials familiar with the unique operations of the organization. Without expertise from both sides, vulnerabilities may remain overlooked.

You can count on Securitronics to perform comprehensive security risk assessments that address your most demanding safety and security concerns. We are dedicated problem-solvers, always ready to use new and innovative technologies to develop your plan and secure your property, assets, and personnel. Our goal is to build long-term, lasting partnerships based on absolute trust and personalized services from the most skilled and talented security professionals available.

Contact Securitronics today. 800.795.3747

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How ‘Smart Security Cameras’ Benefit Business

Old security cameras sent low-quality video surveillance footage to be recorded and played back after something bad happened. Today, high resolution security cameras work with video analytics to streamline security operations and keep security staff focused on unauthorized behavior.

Security cameras can also be used to analyze anonymous customer habits in retail environments and enhance the customer experience in the service industry, emergency departments, movie theaters, and more. They can also help with workplace safety by shutting down machinery or redirecting vehicles when a safety threat is present. Plant, manufacturing, and warehouse workers can be warned when they are entering restricted areas by triggering audible or visual alerts.

Video analytics improve retail operations, and the customer experience, by helping managers to keep an eye on checkout lines. A notification can be sent from the video system to management, alerting them that additional lanes need to be opened. Movie theater management can be notified when a long line has formed at the ticket counter, prompting them to open additional ticket windows. Likewise, once inside, movie goers gather at the food and beverage areas. Long and slow lines can result in a decrease in sales. By recognizing the right time to open a new register, theater operators keep guests moving through every part of their visit.

In emergency departments, smart cameras can count how many people are in the waiting room. Notifications are sent to the charge nurse so that the appropriate resources are dedicated to triage, speeding up patient care. Vehicles parked in patient drop-off areas can delay patients and even become a safety risk. Security can be notified when a vehicle is left in a “no parking” zone for too long.

Industrial facilities are continually evaluating environmental safety to protect employees and visitors, and ensure compliance with industrial safety regulations. Facility pathways can be monitored by smart surveillance cameras that know the difference between a vehicle and a person. The cameras create email, audio, and visual alerts when a person is entering a hazardous area within the facility. Likewise, the cameras can create alerts when a vehicle is outside of normal operating areas, such as a predetermined driving path. Smart cameras can also determine when a tractor trailer loading dock is occupied or is ready for the next delivery. Employees approaching dangerous machinery can also be warned with visual and audio cues that are based on virtual line crossings or danger zone intrusions.

You can count on Securitronics to deliver innovative, cost-effective solutions that address your most demanding safety and security concerns. Our team of Solutionists e dedicated problem-solvers, always ready to use new and innovative technologies to fit your plans and needs. Our goal is to build long-term, lasting partnerships based on absolute trust, personalized services, and the most skilled and talented people available.

Contact Securitronics today. 800.795.3747 or click here to contact us for a FREE Security Consultation

chemicalsecurity

Chemical Manufacturing and Storage Security

Our nation’s security depends on the safety and security of facilities that manufacture, store, or utilize hazardous materials. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Infrastructure Protection (IP) leads and coordinates programs and policies on a national scope that impact local security implementation. The mission is to uncover vulnerabilities and develop programs to address the risks. Presidential Policy Directive 21 (PPD-21) advances a national policy and outlines 16 critical infrastructure sectors.

When addressing Chemical Sector considerations, it’s important to consider how your organization stores and secures chemicals. Manufacturing plants and other industrial facilities may fall under this category. Your workers may not consider your facility to be a target for international or domestic terrorism, but as a leader, you think on a broad scale, and may decide that your facility is due for a security risk and vulnerability assessment.

The chemical sector is comprised of hundreds of thousands of chemical facilities across the United States which manufacture, store, or utilize chemicals to produce products that are critical for modern life. These chemicals range from basic household supplies to agricultural chemicals to pharmaceuticals.

Relationship Development

It’s critical to develop working relationships with local law enforcement agencies, and local businesses, and other organizations. Engage an industry-leading security solutions provider who brings experience from similar facilities like yours. Their knowledge of best practices will speed up the planning process and ensure a solid security foundation is established.

Planning

Planning for the prevention of and reaction to an attack is critical. A solid security plan starts with your professional relationships. Your security vendor will look at your project from a multi-dimensional perspective. When it comes to security, everything from perimeter protection to recording video cameras needs to be considered:

  • Video surveillance
  • Access control
  • Intrusion detection
  • Perimeter fence detection
  • Gates, bollards, and turnstiles
  • Voice communication
  • Policies and procedures

Training

Employees need to be trained to react appropriately in the event of a security breach or attack. Training starts with procedural awareness and develops into the knowledge of minute security system details.

Reporting: “If you see something, say something,” has become the common mantra of homeland security. It may rarely cross an employee’s mind to report suspicious activity, but if your facility could be a target, they need to keep their eyes open for anything out of the ordinary.

Take Action

DHS has developed resources to get you started:

Take the initiative today to contact a Solutionist at Securitronics to assess and develop your approach to security at your facility.

A complimentary site visit gets you started on the path to a safer, more secure facility.

800.795.3747

COO’s Security FAQ: I have a security problem at my facility and need a solution to make it more secure. Where do I begin?

coo

As the COO, the entire operational ecosystem of your company comes first. When a security problem arises, it can impact data integrity, business continuity, and the financial bottom line.

Situation

What type of security problem is it?

  • Cyber security
  • Physical security

Who is the threat?

  • Known intruder (insider or close affiliate)
  • Unknown intruder (outsider)

Internal Resources

For a cyber security intrusion challenge, your IT department will be the first resource you consult. They’ll need to work with you and outside firms to resolve the situation. The scale of the situation may be limited to a few computers or company-wide, involving in-house servers or cloud-based service providers.

For a physical security challenge, your security operations team will be a primary resource. They’ll rely on video surveillance recordings and access control activity logs as a common starting point for prevention and investigation.  Once the breach is uncovered, a review of how to prevent similar situations in the future is in order.

Responsibility

No one likes to consider the risk presented by current or former employees. From retail to manufacturing, risk is always present among employees.

Threats from the outside can involve past employees or players separate from your company.

External Resources

Several resources are available to your company. There are three primary categories:

  • Security consultants
  • Security integrators
  • Security manufacturer representatives

All three of these categories exist in both the cyber and physical security realms.

Closing a Physical Security Gap

Closing the gap in a current physical security strategy involves a holistic review of the current security approach and a strategic plan implementation to rectify the uncovered weaknesses.

There are many existing systems and policies to review:

  • Access control software
  • Door control hardware
  • Perimeter detection
  • Surveillance cameras
  • Recorded video
  • Backup systems
  • Intrusion detection
  • Perimeter barriers
  • Hours of operation
  • Employee access requirements
  • Legal regulations

Systems Approach

Creating a security zone around your facility, or specific areas, requires multiple systems and enforceable policies. Physical devices like gates, doors, and turnstiles can present physical barriers that delay, control, or prevent entry. Access control software tracks successful and denied requests for entry in log files that are used to review challenges to the security plan. Intrusion detection systems provide a keypad system to turn on or off specific zones within the facility. Video surveillance footage provides a visual record of attempts to breach the perimeter or sensitive interior areas. Synchronization, and often integration, of these disparate systems allows for smooth daily operations as well as speedy investigations of unauthorized behaviors.

Valued Partners

Internal and external valued partners are a must-have. Trusted advisors provide valuable insight when developing policies and planning for security hardware and software system implementation. Securitronics is a solutions-driven, problem solver, selecting the right technology and integrated security systems design for every vertical market. Solutions include video surveillance, access control, intercom, communications, and intrusion detection systems.

Contact our team today for a complete physical security evaluation.