Kevin Ian Schmidt

Physical Security Risk Assessment: 9 tips to secure your workplace

As a physical security professional, you must know how what it takes to secure your workplace, for the safety of your coworkers, as well as for the security of the facility, this is accomplished with a proper physical security risk assessment. These days, companies need to address and prepare for security threats which are more substantial and diverse than any other time. With every technological advancement that enables innovative, effective business strategies, brings a security risk which is just as innovative and equally effective.
Every physical security risk assessment of a company security system must start with the specific security requirements along with the effects they are going to have on your business overall. You may want a facility secure enough for UL 2050 certification or perhaps you will simply have to ensure the staff safety before and after business working hours.


9 Tips for a Proper Physical Security Risk Assessment

.Effective Communication: Above all is communicating information to and between employees. A lot of companies utilize e-mail alerts to notify staff concerning would-be hackers. Likewise, make sure that staff remain informed on procedures and prospective site visitors. By letting staff understand what and who to be expecting, they will be better prepared to identify suspicious activities or people. So that you can prevent complacency, make sure to utilize a single way to obtain information that becomes a part of an employee’s habit. This can be a daily server broadcast or informational email. No matter what the source, it needs to be short, practical, and incorporate positive news along with precautionary information.

Key Control: Designate the commitment of locking or unlocking the workplace to as few people as is possible. Eliminating the “first in, last out” approach helps to ensure that all access points are properly secured on a regular basis. Develop a procedure for all those in charge of opening or closing your office which includes taking a look at washrooms, closets, and wherever an individual could possibly hide. Hard keys need to be numbered as well as assigned to specific people. staff assigned keys will need to be regularly be requested to produce their keys to validate against a master registry.

Site-Wide Policies: Something as fundamental as a “clean-desk” policy, training all employees to clear and secure their office desks of valuable equipment or information before departing for the day, significantly decreases potential theft. Mandating staff to possess and display ID badges or access cards all the time enhances the awareness of any unauthorized individuals. Don’t include things like job titles on any directory available to the public as a lot of criminals tend to use a name and title to validate their presence in restricted locations. Finally, be sure to maintain a “chain of possession.” All deliveries need to be given to a person rather then placed in a hallway or even on an unattended desk.

Check out this post on Risk Assessment Guidelines to better understand the process, if you need to.

Small Investments: All computers, laptops in particular, need to be properly secured with cable or plate locks to prevent “walk-off.” Docking stations are rather inexpensive ways to protect electronic devices while not being used. Take into consideration high risk targets such as state-of-the-art equipment, postage meters, check writers, and business checkbooks. Strengthen entry doors by installing peepholes as well as keypads. Implement 2 secured entry doors surrounding a small lobby or foyer. This sort of “airlock” method minimizes piggybacking; a technique intruders utilize to obtain entry by catching a locked door when an employee leaves.

Lights, Camera, Layout: Take note of “dark spots” either inside or outside the office. Put up ample lighting in parking lots and outdoor break areas for staff safety, prevent blind spots in stairwells, and organize hallways and offices to eliminate all areas in which an individual may conceal himself or stolen items. Lacking CCTV, highlighted below, it may be worthwhile to install recording security cameras at key areas like loading bays and access points like after-hours entrances.

Reception: Among the most complete solutions is to utilize one or more full-time receptionists. From a security process perspective, this person enables close examination of credentials and id and funnels security information by means of a single point. When it is impractical to have every site visitor greeted and checked-in by someone, look at a dedicated phone line in the lobby or at the front door that goes directly to a designated person. This process, along with a sign-in station, often is an economical strategy for a lot of offices.

Access Control System: Certainly one of the issues with hard keys is reacting whenever one is lost or stolen. With an access control system, businesses can easily issue access cards to staff while maintaining complete control over what each individual card can open. Additionally, access control systems reduce risk by permitting just enough access to accomplish a job. As a result, employees, contractors, or visitors will be restricted by area or time of day. A couple of things are important with access control systems. First, enable “total access” to as few people as is possible. This will directly clarify who is approved to be where and thereby enable staff to identify and report infractions. Second, maintain a record of the usage of every card. By reviewing card activity, it is possible to ascertain who requires having access to where and at which times, streamlining routines and defining access.

Closed Circuit Television (CCTV): For more advanced security system needs, CCTV is among the most effective method of protection. Using restricted broadcast, every camera is able to be monitored by means of a single user interface. Subject to the specifics of the system, footage may be monitored by a staff member or digitally recorded. Position cameras strategically to achieve the maximum coverage for a single unit. Additionally, cameras or corresponding signs which are visible to visitors and staff will be effective deterrents and create a secure environment. It is essential to keep in mind, however, that as effective as CCTV is, it must be utilized efficiently as well as in tandem with other preventive measures. As an example, installing a unit in an entry with an “airlock” door system enables extended recording of a person (s) entering or exiting the property.

Proper Training: Most of all, make sure that every one of your staff members is properly trained to utilize security equipment and follow procedures. Investment and planning in the ideal security system is going to have minimal effect if people are unclear on preventative measure and intervention. This can be as fundamental as ensuring staff keep doorways and windows secure or safeguard their personal belongings, but usually involves specific training on identifying and responding to suspicious items, persons, or events.


Hopefully you found these tips beneficial in conducting a physical security risk assessment of your facility and understanding the physical security needs of your location. Being able to clearly understand these tips and explain them to others for training or securing CAP-ex, is what will make you a successful physical security professional.

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