At this time of year, many organizations focus on their goals and concerns for the coming new year. While security concerns may not have been high on the list of corporate concerns a couple of decades ago, they are front and center today. And there are many reasons for this.
For instance, we are hearing a lot about brazen smash-and-grab burglaries. What is just now getting media attention is that many of those involved in these robberies are looking for new territory.
While retailers are still high on the list of targets, smash-and-grab burglaries – which typically involve a group of people breaking into a facility while open – are becoming much more common at pharmacies, liquor stores, and now, even parking lots.
Here’s an example.
In November, an FBI agent parked his rental car in a parking lot in Lafayette, CA., an affluent community near San Francisco. Surveillance cameras showed the smash-and-grab robbery in action, which helped arrest one of the culprits. “It’s very uncommon here,” said the FBI agent, who was the victim of the robbery. “I know it has happened at night, but in broad daylight, at noon on a Saturday, that’s pretty brazen.”
This makes us wonder: are smash-and-grab burglaries soon going to happen in office buildings and business facilities? At warehouses? We don’t know. All we know is that security in 2022 will be a much bigger issue than in the past.
So, what steps can businesses take now to address their security concerns.
This applies to building, hospital, school, and sports venue administrators in order to help protect themselves, their people, and their property? Among them are the following:
Pay Attention to Crime Trends. Smash-and-grab is a perfect example. If it happens in retail stores, administrators should be asking themselves, “can it happen here?” We can’t put our heads in the sand, believing something happening somewhere else won’t take place in our facility. Instead, when it comes to security, your mantra should be: “If it can happen anywhere, it can happen here.”
Repercussions from the Great Resignation. Many organizations are shaking their heads right now, trying to understand why so many staffers are leaving their jobs.
• Are they looking for better careers?
• Higher paying positions?
• Starting their own businesses?
Whatever the reasons, it does not matter when it comes to corporate security. Instead, alarm bells should be going off. Many former staffers may still have access to internal data systems, confidential corporate information, hard and thumb drives, even keys to the building. Take steps now to prevent information loss and secure facilities.
Also, start monitoring all business operations looking for suspicious activity. We are getting many calls now from former clients asking us to perform a “refresh” of their corporate security. Essentially, this is a new risk assessment, and a security refresh for many administrators sounds like a good idea in 2022.
Reevaluate, Reorganize, Reset. Ever since the pandemic began, many organizations have been in a rush to restructure their operations to ensure the safety of their staff and remain financially viable moving forward. Unfortunately, some security precautions have fallen by the wayside.
The restructuring was understandable. But now, it is time to reevaluate corporate security measures in place. As we say, new security concerns are emerging. Many of those security measures implemented before and during the pandemic may no longer be practical or worthy as doors slowly reopen.
Additionally, we may need to reorganize and reset several security-related issues. For instance, how effective are your current communication systems should there be a crisis in your facility?
The speed of response is critical when it comes to saving lives, property, and information. And not only that, internal and external communications are becoming a growing concern. The more effective these are, the faster an organization will be back on its feet should a crisis occur.
Finally, here are some corporate security measures we have recommended to our clients in the past to address security concerns. These are needed more today than ever before:
- Regularly train employees on proper security protocols and procedures. This turns your staff into your corporate security officers.
- Have all employees and contractors sign security agreements, nondisclosure agreements (NDAs), and similar acknowledgments.
- Use screening processes when hiring new employees.
- Make it easy – and confidential – for staffers or vendors to report security concerns.
- Routinely monitor and evaluate all security measures. We referenced this earlier, but in 2022 and beyond, we can’t say it enough.