Securing your business is no easy task. Employees, visitors, hackers and burglars all pose potential threats to your business’s security, and all require different methods of being dealt with. Even with a high-tech CCTV surveillance system and the best access control system installed, constant vigilance and almost-redundant levels of security and checks are also often necessary; one small slip-up, and the entire security and safety of your business could be compromised. Here are 7 common and very costly mistakes people make when it comes to business security systems, and how you can avoid them.
1. Letting Managers Bypass Security Checks
This is more common than you might think, or maybe you’re guilty of it too. When a high-ranking manager or executive comes into the building, it’s easy to let them just bypass security, skip showing a badge, or just letting them access any part of the building they like. But for access control and security protocols to work, everybody needs to use them – even the boss. Don’t let managers skip showing their badge, ignore security protocols and off-limits areas, or just skip using them all together. Make sure they are given exactly the access control credentials they need to access appropriate areas and carry out their jobs (role-based access control systems are perfect for this), but make they are using them and respecting the rules, too.
2. Not Monitoring Computers Properly
For your business security systems to work, the computers with access and control over them need to be secure as well. Ensure all server-connected computers are properly secured with passwords and/or badge credentials, and doubly-so if they can be used to access and modify business security systems and access control permissions.
Ideally, computers with such access are kept only in secure locations, where only those who absolutely need access to them can do so. If this is not possible or your company structure dictates otherwise, be sure the appropriate passwords are kept up-to-date, secure and most importantly, secret and well-guarded.
It’s also a good idea to have your IT department or technician monitor computer activity, keeping logs of every site or program accessed, and who has been accessing and using them. This provides a record of what’s happened in case of a security breach and can help decide who actually needs to access and who doesn’t.
3. Not Knowing How Your Security System Works
Ideally have a dedicated team of security professionals to monitor your business security system and ensure building security, but it’s also important that as facilities manager or head of the company, you have an idea of how your business security system works – in terms of both technology and protocols. While you don’t need to be an expert, it’s a good idea to have a basic of understanding of how to use the CCTV system, access control readers and database controls, as well as how to arm and disarm your security alarm system; if the property is under your watch, you need to know how to secure it.
4. Lack of Proper Training For Your Employees
Competence breed confidence, and security staff and personnel should also be thoroughly trained on all security systems, rules and procedures, and with regular training and check-ins to keep them up-to-date on changes in systems or technology. They’re the first point of contact when it comes to security breaches and incidents and need to know how to deal with anything that comes their way, as well as how to use all three major aspects of the security system – surveillance, alarm systems and access control. The more familiar they are with the systems they work with, the more confident they will in responding to incidents and emergency alarms.
And while security staff might be your first point of contact when it comes to security response, your employees are your first line of defense when it comes to preventing issues in the first place. All employees should be trained and briefed on proper security protocols and procedures, including basic items such as never letting unauthorized individuals enter secure areas, not leaving valuables out, and locking all secure doors behind them. Also be sure they know how to use access control systems doors and readers, and know how to contact security personnel in case of emergency.
5. Improper Placement Of Security Cameras
It doesn’t matter how up-to-date, high-resolution your security cameras are, or how much they can record; if they aren’t properly placed and located throughout the building and property, your business security system will not be as secure as it should be. Security cameras should be placed high enough and discreetly enough to avoid attracting attention, out of the reach of potential tampering or vandalism, and in the locations most vital to building security. These include front and rear entrances, main hallways, other secure parts of the facility (vaults, computer server rooms) and anywhere high-value items or information are kept.
PTZ cameras are an excellent way to cover very large areas and eliminate blind spots, as well as to incorporate motion tracking and other video analytics into your video surveillance system.
6. Not Using A Monitoring Service After Hours
Even if you can’t have security guards watching the surveillance feeds and patrolling the grounds 24/7, you should have a monitoring service keeping an eye on either your video system or burglar alarms. A monitoring service ensures there is always a pair of eyes on your business, even if that pair of eyes is simply checking in periodically via remote connection or monitoring the alarm system in case of tripped alarms. A professional monitoring service will be your first point of contact in case of an after-hours breach.
7. Ignoring The Windows And Perimeter
While constant vigilance and video monitoring can provide the bulk of your after-hours security, it’s a good idea to ensure your windows are being monitored, whether via window contacts or glass-break detectors. If someone manages to sneak past security cameras on the perimeter of the building and into a blind spot, door and window sensors will trigger the alarm and alert the monitoring service the second they try and pry open a door or smash a window.