Why should you be interested in 10 tips for building security? Threat to security is always a serious concern. The events of 9/11 brought heightened awareness on the importance of keeping commercial buildings safe and secure. But just as there are advancements in security technology, criminals have equally become sophisticated and creative.
How do you improve your building security to protect yourself, your business, your employees, and your clients? Perhaps the most important tip to keep in mind, first and foremost – Securing your property must be proactive rather than reactive. Do not wait for things to happen before taking necessary steps.
To maximize safety and security, here are 10 Tips for Building Security
- First things first. Know the risks you are facing. Logically, this should be your first step. How can you know how to protect yourself if you do not even know where the threats are coming from.
Once you have identified the risks involved, you can now draw up a comprehensive plan that best suits your needs. You also have the information you need to help you talk to a commercial access control and facility security specialist.
- Secure Perimeter. This is your first line of defense. With risk analysis, you need to identify the blind and dark spots in and around your building.
Safety and security is greatly enhanced by installing adequate lighting in areas such as parking lots, break areas, stairwells and dark hallways. Consider external motion activated lights and internal lights that make your building look occupied even when there is no one around.
If there are trees and shrubbery around the building, keep them well trimmed and maintained to eliminate areas where someone can hide and to prevent window or roof access.
- Access Control and Regulation. This can be done combining 2 techniques – through natural access control and through technology using an electronic access control system.
Natural access control uses the building and landscaping features to guide people as they enter and exit space. Doing this limits access to your building or facility to one or two entrances that are monitored continuously. This discourages intruders while closing off potential escape routes.
Further monitoring and controlling of access to your building is through an electronic access control system. Using an access control system enables you to control who accesses your building, when they can access and even exactly where they can go.
Moreover, it is possible to assign different levels of access to different individuals. For instance, visitors are granted access only to public areas, contractors are allowed access for a limited period of time only and are restricted to certain areas only, and only certain employees may be allowed access to certain high security areas like IT rooms, etc.
Best of all, access control systems create audit trails and reports that can be generated should a security breach occur.
Action 1st Loss Prevention carries a wide range of access control systems that range from the most basic to the most sophisticated. Reach out to us for a free onsite review.
- Security Cameras. For buildings requiring enhanced security, a closed circuit TV system is an effective tool for monitoring your building.
It’s important to strategically locate cameras so maximum coverage is achieved for each unit installed. Installing one unit in an “airlock” door system entry, for example allows you to capture extended footage of person(s) who gained entry or have exited the premises.
More than being tools for recording all activity in your building, they also serve as deterrents and contribute to creating a safe environment for your facility. Action 1st installs a wide range of security cameras for commercial properties to fit every situation. Reach out to us for a free onsite review.
- Key Control. If an electronic access control system is not applicable for your particular situation, having an established procedure for controlling and distributing keys is important. Assign key custodianship and the responsibility of locking and unlocking the office/building to a few select individuals.
The procedure should include precise instructions on the opening and locking up of the office including checking of washrooms, closets, or areas where someone might hide. For full accountability, physical keys should be numbered and assigned only to specific people. And a periodic audit of the actual keys is a must.
Action 1st has computerized master key systems that offer unmatched simplicity while ensuring safety and security. Our commercial locksmith service team will configure a system based on specific access security needs and facility layout.
- A Reception area or at minimum, a receptionist, is a good idea. As an extra layer of defense against unauthorized access, having a person or persons dedicated to greet and check-in visitors is a good idea. This gives you the ability to conduct close inspection of credentials and ID’s and ensures security information goes through only a single point.
If a receptionist cannot be accommodated in your plantilla, you may opt for a dedicated phone in your building or office lobby whose calls are received by a designated receiver. Visitors are tracked through a sign-in station. For some set-ups, this may just be the system you need.
- Anti-Theft Devices, Secure Doors and Airlock Rooms. These are minor investments that greatly enhance security.
- Cyber Security. Just as important as keeping your building secure is protection against cyber-attacks. Therefore investmenting in superior protection from viruses, Trojans, worms, malware and spyware should also be a security priority. Your cyber security plan should include firewalls, security for wireless internet routers, as well as secure backups for data in case of a cyber-attack.
- Clear Cut Policies on Security. There are many policies that your company can adapt depending on your particular requirements. What are examples?
“Clean Desk Policy” or the practice of having all important documents and valuable equipment stored away from the desk and secured before ending the work day reduces potential for theft.
“Chain of possession”. Deliveries should be handed directly to the recipient and not just left unattended on the desk or outside his office
To prevent names from being used by criminals to justify their presence in a restricted area, job titles should not posted on any directory that is publicly accessible.
To readily distinguish unauthorized persons, employees should be required to wear their ID badges/access cards at all time while on premises.
- Employee Training and Information Campaign. A big percentage of breaches are a result of insider action – employees who do it maliciously and deliberately or through carelessness. Training employees on best practices and policies such as the ones written above, to avoid security risks and breaches due to human error should be a top priority.
Finally, constant communication on any potential security issues help in keeping security and safety awareness high. So, now that you know 10 tips for building security, how many have you implemented, and how many are on your list to take action on before the end of the year?