Commercial risk is increasing from slippage, employee theft, intentional damage, data theft and plain old breaking and entering. In the commercial environment today, business security systems are the gatekeeper that can mean the difference between survival and losing everything. The prime purpose in reviewing your existing protection strategy or implementing a new protection regime is to ensure you are safeguarded against the most devastating losses. For many businesses, online and server data security is of prime importance. This encompasses government organizations and business that hold digital customer records, sometimes including credit card details. In the retail sector, physical intrusion and slippage may represent the prime risk, especially when a store deals in high value desirable commodities.
Starting a risk management review entails identifying all risks to your business and then grading them from greatest down to least risk. This is effectively a blueprint to put your risk management plan into action. Once this list is completed, it is prudent to use a qualified security company to evaluate your risk matrix and make recommendations and suggestions to enhance your plan. Risk exposure can cover intrusion, physical damage, undesirable behaviour, employee theft and unauthorised data access. These areas should be paramount in your risk management plan. But identifying risk is only one part of the equation. This allows you to investigate and implement solutions that work for you. Implementation of solutions is critical.
Access control technology allows you to determine persons who are entitled to gain access to your premises or parts of it, and persons you wish to exclude. Technology ranges from use of keys, access codes, swipe cards, fingerprint or voice recognition and even retina scanning. Static guards and mobile patrols present a deterrent to unauthorised access and undesirable behaviour on your premises. These reduce the likelihood of shoplifting and out of hours break-in.
Closed circuit television (CCTV) again acts as a deterrent to physical intrusion, shoplifting and employee theft, and when linked to real time monitoring and alarm systems can catch perpetrators in the act. Fire alarm systems can be linked to security alarm monitoring. This can minimize physical damage to stock and premises in the event of fire or flooding.
Undesirable behaviour covers a huge range of human activity ranging from life threatening down to just plain stupid. For example an unstable disgruntled employee or customer can pose a serious safety threat to current employees and customers alike. Or stupid pranks at work can endanger the safety of customers and workers. Intentional activities like smoking in no smoking areas can present security and safety issues. In oil refineries carrying lighters, matches or cigarettes in the compound is grounds for instant dismissal.
The confidentiality and integrity of company information is also of major concern to business. The recipe for Coca Cola is probably the most guarded document in the world. And the value in KFC as a franchise and marketing organization has been built on the 11 secret herbs and spices recipe. Two pages of paper, each one represents billions of dollars in future profits for the companies. Either of these documents being released could be a major security breach that would cost jobs and livelihoods.
Intellectual property turns the wheels of commerce. Risk management involves identifying what would kill your advantage in your market, and how to make sure that never happens. It concerns how to safeguard your employees and customers on your premises. It determines what information is confidential based on business rules and procedures, and what you can release to be transparent with your market. What information your employees are allowed access to and what must be kept secret.
The advantage created in the market place by trade secrets contributes to the survival of the business and the well-being and security of employees. In the digital age, computer and data safety measures rank highly in the greatest risk category. Entire computer and IT technologies revolve around protecting information, both stored in-house and on the internet. In today’s commercial environment, focus should not only on preventing risks that can happen, but also malicious and accidental risks that can hurt employees, customers and the community. It is about eliminating all potential risks that can hurt anyone, and delivering a better and safer service to all stakeholders.
There are four essential steps in preparing and activating business security systems. First, identify and record all risks to and by the business. Second, have a competent professional security company review this. Third, implement the solutions to safeguard the business, its employees, customers and the communities the business operates in. And finally, conduct a regular risk review.