Price of Security Failure
Posted on June 15, 2016
Last week ended with the killing of young singer Christina Grimmie by a 27-year old man who showed up to her concert and shot her as she signed autographs for fans. And, this week began with the news that a man fatally shot in excess of 100 patrons in an Orlando nightclub, fatally wounding 49. These two tragic events are reported by authorities to be completely unrelated. But on closer inspection, we will likely find a common element between these events – the shared element of security.
In the business of Security, you either fail or you succeed – there is no middle ground. Both of these events ended in catastrophic failures of security.
News reports say both events had security in place. But what exactly does that mean? In the US we like to say we have security if we have an alarm or a surveillance system or have hired a guard. But these are only components of security. Security must be viewed as an integrated system with various components working seamlessly together to produce a common result – a secure environment.
We know from media reports that Ms. Grimmie’s concert venue employed guards and that they did a bag check at the door. But media reports also tell us there was no attempt to search individuals for weapons and no metal detectors in use. What was the purpose of the bag check if not to look for weapons? And if we are looking for weapons, should we not also check the person in addition to the bag?
Early media reports indicate an off-duty police officer was working at the Orlando bar and engaged the shooter in gunfire potentially saving many more casualties. No information is currently available on what threshold barriers to entry exist in the club and how patrons are screened prior to entry. What we do know is that the shooter was able to gain entry with a long weapon and initiate a devastating attack on the 350 bar patrons.
Our goal is not to judge the individuals involved in the security of these events but to call to attention the concept that security is too important to be handled casually. Venue owners and business owners must understand that security is a complex undertaking with a requirement to provide redundant layers of security components working together in an integrated manner to attain a level of truly robust security. The idea that we can hire a guard or install cameras and call it security is long passed in this country.
As security professionals we must look at each venue and each event individually and ask ourselves, what are we protecting? What can go wrong? And how can I design a system that includes the necessary components to defend against those things? Our work is not over when the system is in place because our environment is dynamic, necessitating the question we live with each day – What more? What more can I do that has not been done and what more can we do to add to the mission of security?
As business owners, choosing to take a myopic view of your security leaves you vulnerable to the risk of litigation due to having taken inadequate security measures should your measures fail to deter a critical incident. No single solution is enough to ensure security – no guard, no camera, no alarm equates to good security. You must approach security from a holistic perspective and thoughtfully design and implement integrated layers of security measures working together to create robust, redundant and effective security. Better still to have your security professionally designed, implemented and managed by competent professionals. In security, there is only success or failure and the price of failure is too dear.
Chief Executive Officer
Phone: (360) 981-2703
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Executive Vice President
Phone: (360) 981-3397
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We at Rampart Group are committed to your security. Call 1-800 421-0614 or contact us today with your security or investigative needs.