As we reflect on the first anniversary of the Mandalay Bay shooting, it is sobering to consider the real risks facing any large group of people. A gathering of hundreds or thousands of people is vulnerable to attacks of violence and, unfortunately, over the past several years, we have seen that schools are also such targets.
It just takes a walk through the exhibit hall at any security convention to see the technological advances and growth of video monitoring technology. From thermal imaging and panoramic technology to enterprise surveillance systems, video monitoring becomes more and more sophisticated every year. Today’s systems incorporate “smart” cameras, boast internal storage and embedded analytics, and can stream to virtually any mobile device.
A security executive’s primary strategy should be to prevent lawsuits from happening, so hiring practices and vetting of security firm partners are the first defense. All security officers must be subjected to criminal background and employment history checks.
In the past year, highly publicized mass shootings — especially the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy in December — have made the call for armed security officers commonplace. To many, it seems logical to fight fire with fire; that is, using armed officers to combat armed criminals and prevent tragedies from occurring.
Well-trained officers can be one of the most effective risk management tools for security firms. Proper training can prevent accidents, improve performance and minimize the number of incidents that can lead to costly lawsuits.
“Observe and report” security officers have gained popularity with private security firms over the past five years. These officers, when faced with danger or a need for physical intervention, are supposed to radio the police or authorities trained to handle dangerous situations. They do not intervene.
Our special feature this month highlights the Department of Homeland Security's newest agency: the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency. Also, this month we highlight the Leander Independent School District's data practices that protect student privacy. Security experts discuss video monitoring, cybersecurity for public-private partnerships, privacy and more.