A risk assessment can take many forms, from a simple security survey “walk-around” to a more complex, full blown assessment. Understand that the performance of the assessment itself is a deterrent to criminal activity. When performed, it sends a clear message to employees, management, shareholders and anyone else who is aware of the survey that your organization cares about its protection and is willing to expend resources to protect its assets.
Secure Strategies has performed hundreds of security surveys across New England. Our satisfied clients include small, medium and large corporations as well as government agencies, non profits and infrastructure locations such as water treatment plants, wastewater plants and power plants. Allow us to assist you with your security needs.
The benefits of a risk assessment include:
- Providing a road map to align your security objectives with a well thought out plan
- Reducing your vulnerabilities to numerous criminal activity
- Increasing awareness of security by all staff members, and allowing them to become part of the solution, not a roadblock
- Assuring that the dollars you spend on future security needs is in line with your new security plan and not a haphazard expenditure
- Determining if your current security program (if you have one) addresses your needs
- Allowing you to state in a court of law that you took responsibility to protect your employees, visitors, products and other assets should a liability issue arise
A risk assessment should not be a single, one-time only event.
Criminals and terrorists get smarter to foil countermeasures that are put in place. They perform many activities that established companies perform, but they do it in order to steal your valuables: they plan for contingencies, they think about resources to be used, they inspect their target, and they learn from their mistakes.
To foil criminals and terrorists, we must constantly improve our methods and stay one step ahead of their thought process. An annual security survey will allow you to take advantage of the latest in hardware and software technology, and will allow you to learn the newest techniques to foil the bad guys!
Why perform a Security Survey?
In today’s world of elevated stress and a heightened apprehension of terrorism, a survey will address these concerns and put in place countermeasures to reduce your risk.
Also, you may have a change in your business such as a new building, modifications to your facility, a change in your labor force, an impending layoff or strike, or a merger or acquisition.
Another reason for a survey is that there may be a government or industry-specific requirement (such as the chemical industry or water treatment plant industry) stating that a survey is compulsory.
You may realize that your employees are actually increasing the risk to your facility or product by their unsafe activities (propping doors open for a cigarette break, allowing unauthorized visitors into a secure area, etc…).
And lastly, you may need a security survey because an incident has already occurred, and you wish to prevent another occurrence.
Who should perform the Security Survey?
There are two schools of thought on this topic: the survey can be performed by in-house security personnel, or by external consultants. The vast majority of the security profession agrees that to receive the most effective and superior survey, an external party should conduct the security survey. Here are some pros and cons:
- Internal resources – available 24/7 and knowledgeable about the facility
- Internal resources – they have to live with the recommendations, so they may have more at stake in the results
- Internal resources – usually costs less than an outside consultant
- Outside resources – Almost always have more experience conducting risk assessments
- Outside resources – The results of the survey are almost always accepted at a higher level of the corporate structure
- Outside resources – The survey results are more likely to generated additional funding for security in the organization
- Outside resources – There is a neutral set of eyes that has not been desensitized to the vulnerabilities of the facility. This is the most important reason to perform a security survey with external resources. Time and time again, we have seen that company employees bypass obvious security vulnerabilities because they have become oblivious to the issue; they pass by the same unlocked door day after day, year after year, until they do not see it as a vulnerability waiting to be exploited by a criminal.