If you’re not taking your building’s physical security seriously, you’re likely to be leaving it susceptible to unauthorised entry, intrusion or other forms of security breach, which can jeopardise more than just your business operations or building, but the safety of your employees as well. It’s why it’s important to properly assess the physical risk, potential threats and identify the solutions that you can implement to be proactive with security and safety. In this post, we’ll discuss some of the biggest physical risks to your building and what you can do to mitigate them. Here’s a closer look:
Before getting into some of the solutions to help mitigate risk, it’s worth taking a moment to better understand the physical security threats and their probability:
- High Risk: High-risk threats, such as terrorist attacks, blasts, active shooters and more, are also some of the least probable ones. However, it’s always best to prepare for the worst, so while you may think that your building may never be the site of such an incident, be sure to prepare as if it may. Also, consider your neighbours and the potential risk that they may generate which could impact your location.
- Medium Risk: Medium risk threats are more likely to occur than high-risk threats, but also tend to be less impactful on your property. Examples of medium-risk threats include demonstrations and protests.
- Low Risk: Low-risk threats, while also often the least impactful, are also the most likely. Some examples of low-risk threats include unauthorised entry or access to a building or a site, vandalism and loitering.
Solutions to Limit Risk
Any type of property is subject to physical security risks. The good news is that conducting a proper security assessment can help you identify ways to mitigate risk and enhance your overall building security. While properties should be assessed on a case-by-case basis and specific solutions should be identified for the property, some potential solutions to mitigate risk include the following:
Where it is practically possible, fencing and gates are ideal for securing the perimeter of your property and preventing unauthorised site access. Fencing comes in a variety of different types, such as weld mesh, expanded metal, chain link, wood and even electric. The best security fencing often combines fencing with one or more other solutions, such as security cameras, video analytics or other forms of detection sensors.
Pedestrian and Vehicle Locking Mechanisms
Locks are still a fundamental but effective tool for at best preventing and at worst delaying any unauthorised entry to a vehicle or building. Doors or gates fitted with advanced locking mechanisms can help deter any potential threats before they occur.
When it comes to enhancing your building’s physical security, it’s important to address all the potential entry and exit points to the facility. One of the key entry points just so happens to be the windows. Security glazing is designed to strengthen windows to make them much more difficult to break and gain unauthorised entry. There are a variety of ways to glaze windows to better secure a facility. For instance, architectural tempered glass is designed so it’s up to five times stronger than conventional glass, laminated glass can provide additional resilience for attack or blast. Window films can help improve privacy and prevent glass from shattering. Even upgrading from single-pane windows to double- or triple-pane can help.
Turnstiles are an ideal access control solution for many properties, especially when it comes to controlling flow through large areas, therefore assisting security officers to handle any unauthorised access. They’re typically installed just inside of the main entry doors to a building and serve as an additional access point for anyone entering a facility. They often work in conjunction with doors, security cameras and card readers to ensure that only authorised persons can enter a building or specific area of that building. In addition to security benefits, turnstiles can have safety benefits as well. They permit security professionals to identify the number of people in a building or area of a building and also help to prevent tailgating.
Have a lot of people that could be entering your building at the same time? A speed gate could benefit your operations. Similar to turnstiles, these access control devices offer an increased level of security to prevent unauthorised users from accessing certain areas and are also ideal for quickly, efficiently and safely processing a large number of people at once.
Risk Assessments and Operational Requirements
It’s imperative that you take security for your building seriously, and part of this involves anticipating the types of physical threats that it may be subjected to. As part of your risk assessment, you may find that it makes sense to hire a security consultant to fully identify the potential risks and where any improvements can be made.