Using lockdown as an opportunity to assess business premises security

By Gary Lara, Marketing Assistant at Charter Global

Business physical security is usually overlooked when there are so many other urgent tasks at hand. Even more so, physical security has been left in the shadow of cybersecurity and protecting information, yet, if a potential physical threat were to hit, the consequences could be costly. Given the current lower business activity than usual – stemming from lockdown regulations, and more employees working from home, business owners and managers should take advantage of this time to take a step back and analyse the current conditions of their premises’ physical security, identify areas for improvement and implement enhancements.

Where to begin? Start by completing a full assessment of all existing security measures already in place. This includes an array of physical security devices such as automated ID access systems, CCTV, physical locks, alarm systems, and of course, all points of entry such as doors and windows. How do they look? Are they outdated? Did any of them have performance issues before lockdown? Do any of them seem to have been purposely damaged? Test each one of them to define if they are working appropriately and keep a register of this assessment so you can highlight any points that stand out.

Now, let us get into a little more detail. When it comes to access systems, evaluate who has permission to use them. If they are automatic, run a check on who has an ID card or a registered fingerprint, is anyone who previously had access but shouldn’t anymore still registered within the system? If your business access system is manual, how many copies of keys are there? Who has permission to use them? Attention to detail is a must.

For surveillance systems, make sure the image quality of the footage is at least decent. Apart from serving as a visual deterrent, footage produced from cameras could be used as evidence in court if an attempted attack were to take place. Also, make sure all cameras are positioned strategically towards points of higher risk and points of entry. Alarm systems are also effective in deterring intruders so make sure your system is still working and is set to an effective volume level.

Focusing on physical locks, check the conditions of each one. Are they a little old and rusty? It is probably time to upgrade. Keep count of all keys for each lock and make sure they are all functioning properly.

Lastly, windows and doors. These points of access are of highest risk and must not be left aside during your assessment. It is vital to check if all frames, handles, locking mechanisms and glass are in optimum condition. Many burglars gain access to facilities due to the ease of pushing or breaking doors and windows. Consider investing in security roller shutters that will not only serve as protection of your property from theft and vandalism but will also help in keeping important assets out of sight. There are many options available and can even be built to bespoke requirements.

Physical security is vital in protecting your employees and assets from any potential threat. Lacking security measures can be extremely risky, and you could avoid this by completing frequent checks.

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