Security 500 conference     

 Don’t miss the networking event of the year for security executives!
Register today for the Security 500 Conference.

Education: K-12 / Security & Business Resilience / Education:University / Security Enterprise Services / Retail/Restaurants/Convenience / Construction, Real Estate, Property Management / Security Leadership and Management / Hospitals & Medical Centers / Banking/Finance/Insurance

In Defense of the Facility

March 1, 2010
KEYWORDS cameras / campus
/ Print / Reprints /
ShareMore
/ Text Size+
John McClurg, vice president – global security for Honeywell, works to secure the company’s 100,000 worldwide workforce from both external and internal threats.


Community Transit has brick and mortar facilities and facilities on wheels. Both hold precious cargo. For its buildings, the enterprise uses megapixel cameras.

Back in the really old days, before security video and smart cards, before optical turnstiles and biometrics, there were buildings and watchmen. Often after dark, the watchmen would walk around, armed with a flashlight and – sometimes – a watchman’s clock, to protect the facility. Then Henry Ford, who invented the charcoal briquette among other things, decided there were important business assets beyond factory walls. His Psychological Department, some say the precursor to corporate security, would go visit Ford workers at home to ensure they were behaving.

Today, the security mission can involve hundreds of remote facilities in scores of countries and cover thousands of computer systems holding millions of dollars of intellectual property. Or it can cover one building. There are workplace violence threats, terrorism, slip-and-falls, vandalism, weather emergencies, parking violations, employee theft, unauthorized intruders, armed robberies, white powder in the office mail, arson incidents and the breach of hundreds of complex and conflicting rules, regulations and laws.

There are a variety of ways to look at and differentiate facility security in key sectors such as banking and finance, manufacturing, public transportation, government facilities, educational institutions and healthcare.

Still, whatever the sector and its uniqueness, all share commonality in a focus to conduct their security programs, apply technologies and use contracted services to align and further the business aims of the enterprise.

Manufacturing giant Honeywell’s John McClurg, vice president - global security, knows he must make sure his internal stakeholders’ interests are protected. But the bottom line is that “we are a widely held Dow 30 Company, so shareholder interests are considered. Shareholders give an asset to the company and they expect a return,” says McClurg. “Similarly, the board understands that their obligation to shareholders involves a secure environment. We also work to secure our 100,000 worldwide workforce from both external and internal threats.”


Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pa., must position facility security to reflect its community as well as the educational institution.

Healthcare’s Core Business Focus

Eric L. Levine, staff vice president and director of corporate security at WellPoint, the nation’s largest health benefits company with approximately 34 million medical members, believes in a proactive approach to facility security. “But you also need to make sure you align with the core business of the company.” His mission statement blends with WellPoint’s.

Also at healthcare facilities, and because of federal and state laws and regulations specific to healthcare records, there is expanded emphasis on computer and information security as a critical part of the facility security mission.

“We try to be on the cutting edge of integrity and accountability when it comes to patient confidentiality and record-keeping,” says Michael Counes, director of information technology at California’s Hanley Center, the renowned nonprofit alcoholism and addiction treatment facility. “HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) is primary at every level, and archiving business email and minimizing personal email are concerns.”

He adds that although productivity is important to any organization anywhere, “problems with off-color jokes or inappropriate Web surfing was not really a big issue for us. But sometimes people forget and you want to be able to enforce your Acceptable Use Policy and we were looking for a way to accomplish that if necessary.”

For Don Burr, risk assessment analyst at Community Transit, facilities are both fixed and mobile. Headquartered in Everett, Wash., the regional transit authority houses most of its critical infrastructure at a couple of locations that include diesel storage, fuel islands, bus and vanpool fleets, and surplus vehicles. But there are rubber-wheeled facilities: 282 buses, 410 vanpool vans and 55 paratransit vehicles that carry 40,000 or so people every weekday.

“We are always looking for new ways to improve service – and safety is always an important consideration,” comments Burr.

At California State University Long Beach, Police Chief Stanley Skipworth’s facility is really a community within a community. Known as “the Beach,” the hilltop portion on the 322-acre campus overlooks the Pacific Ocean. Eighty permanent buildings house the various colleges, 63 academic departments and programs, 24 centers, four institutes and four clinics. “While our purpose is to protect the facilities and people, the security mission reflects the university’s mission so that a safe and high quality learning experience can occur,” points out Skipworth, who notes that many southern Californians visit the campus at all hours for performances, events or just to stroll.

Far from a surfing beach, Dick Powell, who oversees physical security for Army Alaska in Fort Richardson, needed to protect a unique facility, an abandoned Cold War-era Nike Missile site. Situated on a mountain just outside of Anchorage, the site also houses several wireless towers for Anchorage utilities and other critical communications. His challenge was to overcome the environment when considering security communications from the site.

At Nationwide Financial Services, Jay Beighley, AVP, corporate security, sees a clear though daunting mission. “Simply, our role is to help the company take the risks they want to take to do their business. Sometimes people think the security folks are here to stop crime; that’s part of the role, but it’s important to align our function with the company’s goals and objectives.”

Michael Perrette agrees. “My mission involves risks and threats,” observes Perrette, vice president corporate real estate at Prudential Financial, and who has responsibility for electronic security at the enterprise’s far-flung facilities.


At Nationwide Financial Services, Jay Beighley, AVP, corporate security, balances a diverse and far-flung group of facilities while allowing the enterprise to take the risks it needs to take.

Facilities Go Animalistic

And speaking of far-flung, Connie George has a diverse facility that ranges from the African savanna to an Asian forest and from foraging bears to blacktip reef sharks and a giant Pacific octopus. George, working with IT Manager Doug Jones at the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium, uses security technology to provide a safe experience for visitors but unique animal behavior needs for the zookeepers.

Corporate culture is on the mind of Wayne “Butch” Day, vice president of security, YRC Worldwide, a Fortune 500 company headquartered in Overland Park, Kan., and one of the largest transportation service providers in the world. “The mission of the YRC security department is to ensure the safety and security of employees, equipment, facilities and customer goods entrusted to the care, control and custody of YRC.

“We endeavor to fulfill a wide variety of security requirements, both from the YRC business model and corporate culture,” Day says. “The security of our employees is of paramount importance. Through that culture, security defines those requirements through several programs, both at the corporate and field levels.”

Continuity also is a building security element, too.

With more than 35 years in the field, Bill Besse, executive director at Andrews International, sees the resilience puzzle pieces as centering on processes, people and facilities as much as current and future threats. When it comes to facility security, no matter the type of enterprise, he says that communications during a crisis is crucial. You cannot just cover everything, he notes, but instead, you have to get to employees, customers, law enforcement, the community, the media and others in their homes, offices, plants and in transit. Rather than try to build plans to cover everything, he suggests building a broad set of contingency plans. Incorporate as much into the day to day of the organization. And, your plans must be part of overall business planning itself.

Brand and reputation are two more recent elements to consider in resiliency. He suggests that CSOs, loss prevention and security directors have a big opportunity here, as these executives, more than others, have a 40,000 foot high view. Moving from so high up, security leaders with facility protection responsibility also have a clear view of how technology can play a vital role close to the ground.

At Burr’s Community Transit, Andrews installed five megapixel cameras from Avigilon at the Kasch Park Operating Base and the Merrill Creek Operating Base, in addition to a two megapixel camera inside the vault room where cash is counted, and a three megapixel camera in the lobby for greater coverage. The organization uses the vendor’s control center software with HD stream management and an HD network video recorder at each site to store one week of continuous surveillance footage.

Thanks to the technology, Burr has reduced investigation times substantially. “Previously, we had a mix of VHS and DVR systems that were cobbled together to create a surveillance system that was unable to meet our needs,” he explains. “With our previous system we could not capture any incident – whether it was a car theft or suspicious person – with enough clarity for identification.”


At Prudential Financial, Michael Perrette is on top of change. “Technology – it changes so fast. Is the decision you make today good tomorrow?”

Wireless as a Facility Security Solution

At California State University Long Beach, Chief Skipworth employs a wireless video surveillance system to watch over his campus. The system, with wireless networks from Firetide, has led to numerous arrests, including one felony weapons possession charge. The University administration and on-campus police department needed a surveillance system to supplement officers on patrol and couldn’t temporarily shut down to lay fixed cable.

Thirty-seven pan-tilt-zoom cameras, 29 of which are connected wirelessly, and 40 mesh nodes comprise the network, deployed by local installer Moore Electrical Contracting. The network operates in the licensed 4.9 GHz public safety band to reduce interference and provide extra security; the system includes Bosch analog cameras and IndigoVision encoders and video management. The majority of cameras are strategically located on light poles and other structures around campus and its parking lots. Those entering areas under surveillance are alerted via signs.
Trained police dispatchers monitor the live video feeds and communicate with police officers on patrol in real-time.

Ultimately, the network will be able to stream live video into patrol cars on the beat. Skipworth proudly states that “We have one of the most advanced communications centers anywhere. We have taken the technology to the most appropriate level.” He observes that “any police department is only as strong as the relationships it has. IT and telecom on campus are very helpful. When people come to my facility, they should always have a safe, educational and enjoyable visit. To get to that goal, it comes down to the technologies that give us the advantage and the people who make it possible.”

At another, very different, facility, add spending money to the goal.

That’s the value-added for Michael Williams at his suburban Chicago Golf Mill Shopping Center. 

Williams, senior general manager, has stakeholders, too. They include the center’s owners, the merchants and shoppers as well as local law enforcement. His facility security strategy consists of officers as a uniformed presence and digital security video. Sharing Chief Skipworth’s attraction to wireless mesh, Golf Mill has internal and exterior PTZ cameras, from Axis Communications and OnSSI for video management, that provide protection, lower liability and can tie into the local police. The bottom line: a safe and secure shopping experience means more purchases and returning shoppers.

Way up north to Alaska and wireless was a key element of Powell’s Fort Richardson facility assignment. Installing a five mile point to point link was especially difficult in the microclimate location with winds of over 150 mph, extreme temperature changes, and a lot of snow. He worked with integrator John Banks of Evergreen Fire and Security, who looked at wireless mesh networking from Fluidmesh to cover the point to point link. According to Powell, one challenge was to overcome the communication portion for the security video. The wireless connection was economical for the distance covered and alleviated the need to install fiber. “When you add the word ‘mesh,’ it often means you’re using the antennas in a ‘mesh’ configuration, which is multiple paths for a signal to transmit to the same location,” Banks says. 

“We’re not using the mesh aspect in this particular case. It’s a point to point configuration.” He adds that “the microclimate was a challenge but the reason we decided to go wireless was the only other real option was fiber and it was cost prohibitive to say the least.”


Facility security vulnerabilities can include computers, storage devices and the network itself. At Hanley Center, monitoring software watches over emails and use of the Web to protect patient records.

A Community Effort

Residential colleges such as Franklin & Marshall in Lancaster, Pa., are inextricably linked to the surrounding community. So when Lancaster experienced a rash of vandalism incidents near college property, campus security officials took action with a new initiative to increase video surveillance and overall safety measures.

Although the incidents were not located on school grounds, they spurred F&M’s 19-member public safety staff to find additional ways to monitor the facility’s 52-acre campus and implement a deterrent to potential vandals. Integrator Tri-M Group used equipment from Bosch Security Systems, which began with six perimeter PTZ cameras and now numbers 20. Dedicated fiber was run from four facilities to public safety headquarters. The integrator and Maureen Kelly, director of F&M’s public safety group, worked with local officials to use decorative streetlight poles and traffic light arms to mount the cameras, which were encased in special housings to blend in with the street’s décor.

Corporate culture went to a high level. “It was important to the community and to the school that the campus still be considered open and welcoming,” Kelly comments. Through a series of community meetings as well as the use of strategically posted signage that indicated the area was under surveillance, residents knew the cameras were working to ensure their safety. School officials also increased street lighting and improved landscaping to boost the efficacy of the surveillance camera effort.

For Nationwide’s Beighley, his facility turned out to be literally nationwide and diverse while his relationship with his integrator, Tom Clancy of AcreeDaily, turned out to be a welcomed partnership.
With 200+ facilities and more than 700 locations, “I really have a variety including office buildings, high rises, data centers, hotels, a hanger and the Columbus, Ohio, arena district, to name a few. Security needs to blend into these diverse areas so that it is acceptable to the people you are there to protect,” says Beighley. He sees the need for facility security to be in the “fabric of the organization. You must make sure the function fits the organization. You can teach security but it is the management of it” that makes a difference.”

For the Nationwide executive, when setting security standards for his enterprise, there is value in ongoing threat assessments and a rating system. “The higher the risk, the more countermeasures are needed ranging from policies, procedures and awareness programs to access controls, security video and alarms to security officers, training and testing. They’re all part of the mix.” And the integrator must clearly understand “what my goals and objectives are. He is my expert. I cannot possibly stay on top of all the technologies and advances.”

Clancy agrees. “With so much technology out there, different solutions apply to different facilities, applications, events and changers in the budget. We need to listen, to help cost justify and then implement.”

Uniquely, Beighley’s enterprise has Nationwide Property Protection Services, which provides alarm monitoring and guarding services internally and externally.


Security officers are the backbone of facility security at Palmer College of Chiropractic. Robert Lee, vice chancellor for support services, sees value in a well-trained, service-oriented officer force.

Officers Protecting Facilities

Beyond video management software, smart cards and analytics, among high-tech tools, there is facility security value in officers.

While many educational institutions have sprawling, park-like settings and young people often away from home for the first time and living on campus, Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa, stands apart. According to Robert Lee, vice chancellor for support services, his college, of course, shares a mission with others. “Being located in the Midwest with an inner city environment, our 1,300 students depend on our campus security programs to create and maintain a safe and comfortable environment that is paramount to attract students, patients, faculty, and staff. Without the safe and comfortable environment, we would have no business.”

Palmer College students are adult and independent to make their own decisions and the college must have a stable campus environment to attract students to the neighborhood.

The campus has around 20 neighborhood buildings built from 1860 to 2007 and not all are contiguous. “The academic buildings are not intended to be locked down. The buildings are protected with Per Mar Security officers and electronic devices,” says Lee. The officer firm maintains trained security officers, professional in their interaction with the constituents. Lee and Per Mar executives agree that constant refining of training is a must for the security officers to perform their roles interacting with students, faculty, staff, and citizens passing through the campus. Another challenge is creating a strategic plan for electronic devices and the importance of buildings and spaces such as parking lots in regards to matching up with limited funding.

Friendly but not friends, Palmer College officers handle threat and emergency situations but they also provide escort service, help others in bad weather in parking lots, and try to find lost items of value. The college doesn’t lack for electronic solutions for facility security. It was the first to install emergency phones in the Quad City area. All buildings are monitored for fire protection and all elevators are directly tied to Per Mar Security’s central station. There are intrusion systems, access controls in designated buildings and security video, to name a few.

At Prudential Financial, Michael Perrette, who is vice president of corporate real estate, has a neighborhood, too. From his office in Newark, he constantly evaluates ever-changing risks and responds to business requirements. Perrette sees merit in many solutions, including electronic access controls and turnstiles as well as security video, bollards and window protection. “We also have strong security when it comes to all the mail and packages into facilities.”

The Prudential executive is always eyeing improvements and advances. “Technology – it changes so fast. Will the decision you are making today be good tomorrow?”

Yesterday – in the form of older facilities built before today’s security strategies and technologies – is just one challenge faced by Darrell Reyka, manager of school police/safety and security at Sarasota County Public Schools, and his Chief of School Police Larry Leon. “Our mission is to provide a safe, secure and nurturing environment,” says Reyka. The schools have a mix of facilities. “There are older schools built in the 1920s, with open corridors and many entrances. Newer style buildings have a central point of entry,” points out Leon, who sees one strategy as the need to limit access.


Transitioning with Technology

Technology includes several thousand security video cameras, about 200 DVRs, a central station for alarm monitoring and card access control at appropriate facilities, with some students having proximity cards. Projects are ongoing. A rebanding program throughout the county’s emergency and law enforcement agencies has strengthened interoperability and the schools’ partnership with public safety. “And we have begun the transition to fully electronic access control,” adds Reyka.

Thanks to technology, some facilities and their owners and managers are seeking ways to better integrate security systems and make them work for the business as well as security.

A case in point is Mesirow Financial Real Estate and its Chicago-located Class A 353 North Clark office tower.

Working with SDI (System Development.Integration), Mesirow aimed to create an integrated tenant-facing technology environment that contributes to the vision of delivering an unmatched office experience for tenants, employees, and visitors alike. SDI is assisting with selecting and implementing. It sets “a new standard for quality and tenant amenities in commercial office environments. The advanced, tenant-focused technologies provide a level of convenience and security control that goes beyond basic building amenities, to become a lifestyle enhancement,” says Rux Currin, Mesirow’s senior vice president.

Experience is also a goal of security technologies at the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium. It has implemented an intelligent network video recorder platform to help protect visitors, employees, animals and exhibits and to provide long-term audit ability and accountability. The 77-acre naturalistic habitat zoo is home to thousands of animals and is one of only six major zoo and aquarium combinations in the country.

A unique facility has unique security needs. The Zoo’s Connie George observes that the technology’s “ability to help us maximize the quality of video from our cameras and to provide us with months, instead of days, of storage allows us to protect our guests, employees and animals. It is important for us to have solid, auditable video data history for months to come, and we have used this feature many times to observe visitor trends, as well as behavioral developments and births of animals such as painted dogs, tigers and polar bears.”

The new storage tech allows the end user to set image aging policies, with the ability to shrink video over time. Doug Jones, IT manager for the zoo adds, “It will reduce cost and provide more efficiency with higher frame rate and higher resolutions at the camera. Most of our cameras are IP-based.”


Transportation Pulls Ahead

It may seem like a zoo sometimes in the transportation sector, but when it comes to security, Butch Day of YRC has his experienced hands firmly on the wheel. “Through our staff of security investigators and specialists, the YRC security department maintains a frontline ability to address the security needs of YRC and its customers immediately, both on internal and external levels. Facilities and properties are further monitored by means of security camera systems and the use of a Security Communications Center, staffed 24 hours a day, year round.” He adds that “with the downturn in the economy, available funds for new and innovative technologies are limited, requiring the need to constantly revisit current practices and procedures” when it comes to facility security.

Matching internal practices and procedures to regulations – and improving them – is one focus of Hanley Center’s Michael Counes, who says that implementation of monitoring software was an IT initiative. “We wanted to enhance the security of our patient records. We needed something to easily and quickly show generalities and trends, something to show me not just what employees do on their computer, but how the information is disseminated.”

Counes says he demonstrated the technology to staff members and they were amazed the software not only provided data so management could talk about what employees were looking at, but provided screen snapshots that showed what employees were looking at while they were looking at it. “On one occasion, there was concern over a patient’s records being printed,” comments Counes. “But using software to review the actions, it became clear the activity was accidental. We discuss monitoring in our employee orientation and stress monitoring is in place to enforce HIPAA, ethics, and ensure accountability to the people we serve.”


Checking Email Within Facilities

Luckily, Counes is ahead of the game. Many organizations, especially outside of healthcare, are often caught off-guard when thieves intrude into a facility through computer and communications systems. Travis Watson, solutions engineer, and Matt Bossom, program manager - technology solutions, at Accuvant, an information security consulting firm, agree that, generally speaking, businesses are ill prepared for big, bad events that could force in-house employees to work remotely. Recalls Watson, “There was a routine water main break. People had to work off-site. But how many? Could the infrastructure take on the increased authentication of traffic, licensing and bandwidth?” 

Adds Bossom, “Security executives need to intelligently design or work with their IT on a global gateway” that can be employed when needed to keep the enterprise resilient.”

Facility security – whether protecting the parking lot, controlling lobby access, or viewing security video – is but one part of a total picture. It can be a global assignment and one that includes cyber security.

“Every global company looking at emerging markets and opportunities has to appreciate the risks they create. Being an aggressive, global company, having our arms around that risk is important,” says McClurg of Honeywell. McClurg’s responsibilities include strategic focus and tactical operations of Honeywell’s internal global security services, both physical and cyber. He is also charged with the seamless integration of Honeywell’s various security offerings and improving the effectiveness and efficiency of security initiatives. A previous Security magazine article featured McClurg and other enterprise security leaders about their matrix management approach to evaluating effectiveness and improving the operation.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to Security Magazine. 

Recent Articles by Bill Zalud

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

ASIS 2013 Product Preview

ASIS International 59th Annual Seminar and Exhibits, September 24-27 in Chicago, Illinois, will include an exhibit hall packed with innovative security solutions. Here are some of the products that will be shown at ASIS this year.

Podcasts

Virtualization and Data Center Security: What You Need to Know for 2014

Data centers are increasingly becoming the center of the enterprise, and data center and cyber security is following the same path for security departments. According to Justin Flynn, a consultant at the Burwood Group, the virtualization of data centers allows enterprises to scale more easily and faster, with a smaller footprint.

However, hosting enterprise data in the cloud can make intrusion detection more difficult – how can enterprise security leaders team up with other departments to keep aware of cyber risks and traffic, and physical and data compliance during the virtual transition? How can CISOs and CSOs discuss cyber threats with the C-Suite to get the resources they need? And how can the proper infrastructure test and verify possible malicious attacks? 

More Podcasts

Security Magazine

Security Magazine 2014 September cover

2014 October

Security takes a look at safety and preparedness for the harshest of weather phenomena in this October 2014 edition of the magazine. Also, we investigate supply chain security and the many benefits of PSIM. 

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Travel & the Ebola Risk

Are you and your enterprise restricting travel due to Ebola risks?
View Results Poll Archive

THE SECURITY STORE

comptiahighriseproductphoto
CompTIA Security+ Certification Study Guide
CompTIA's Security+ certification is a globally-recognized, vendor neutral exam that has helped over 60,000 IT professionals reach further and higher in their careers. The current Security+ exam (SY0-201) focuses more on being able to deal with security issues rather than just identifying them.
More Products

Clear Seas Research

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications,Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.

STAY CONNECTED

Facebook 40px 2-12-13 Twitter logo 40px 2-12-13  YouTube  LinkedIn logo 40px 2-12-13Google+

Vertical Sector Focus: Critical Infrastructures

criticalhomepagethumbFrom terrorism to vandalism, it’s preparedness, response, training and partnerships. Learn about some of the critical security issues facing this sector.

Visit the Critical Infrastructure page to read more.