Now that we’ve done all we could to ensure cyber safety, it is perhaps time to take a step back and consider the possible physical threats and thus what we can do for inner office security. Workplace violence hasn’t been eliminated just because cybersecurity is today’s prime concern. On the contrary. With all that’s going on – from the global economic recession to the covid, things started getting out of hand. It’s no wonder that physical security once again became a priority. And that big and small businesses alike try to find the best methods to make their working place safe. Threats are all around.
Office security 101: To find the enemy, you must get to know it
Which are the possible risks at a specific working environment in a specific part of a specific town? It’s fair to say that all bits that constitute a specific environment play a role in the place’s security – nature of work, geography, crime rates, business size – just to name a few.
Although this is true, the enemies are nearly always the same: theft, corporate espionage, physical violence, vandalism. In other words, one must protect people – first and foremost. And then all the rest – that’s documents, equipment, weapons, chemicals.
Depending on the business, one must evaluate the company’s assets. Is there a fear to have firearms stolen? Is this a hospital, energy plant, public building? Securing an environment may include anything small like installing new file cabinet locks. Or big like installing access control systems.
So, the number one thing one must do is to evaluate their own vulnerabilities. When you know what you need to protect, you can think of ways to protect it.
People’s safety comes before anything else
There’s no workplace without at least a few people, while most have many employees and even more visitors. Protecting people – both employees and customers alike is a company’s number one priority. That’s protecting people from other people – external threats or inner office conflicts. But also, from other dangers. Which are those? Fires, earthquakes, and other disasters. And although you can’t do much about Mother Nature, you can do a lot to make the office sound, in terms of resistance.
The parameter of people turning against other people is also one that must be taken seriously. A gunman walking into an office makes the headlines for a reason. The point is to prevent this from happening – that’s to let anyone walk into your workplace with a gun. And create safety nets, in case this happens. And so, you need barriers at main entry points the same way you need emergency exits around the building – panic doors. You need metal detectors at the same check entry points the same way you need biometric scanners and high-security locks.
High-security locks and access control to protect all assets
With high-security door locks and access control systems at vulnerable parts inside the business, you don’t only protect people but also products, assets, and important documents. Nowadays, the good thing is that there are innumerable choices among door locks. Among cabinet locks too. Among biometrics, card readers, ways to control all points. This works two ways. Not only do you protect assets and your own people but also the public from coming in contact with hazardous substances, for example.
CCTV systems – the big brother is often helpful
Surveillance cameras are often annoying to those working in an office. But they can make a difference between letting a violent act occur or not. When burglars or criminals of any nature know that they are seen, chances are high that they may hold back. Security cameras are great deterrents and ideal not only around the building and at the main entry points but also inside the building.
The combo of good locks, security cameras, and tests makes a difference
On the other hand, CCTV systems cannot do much on their own. Sure, they report and become witnesses of a crime. But the point is to try to prevent a crime or anything bad from happening in your office. To achieve that, you need a combination of moves and equipment. You need good locks, detection systems, biometrics, cameras, audits, proper lighting, emergency panic bar systems.
You also need to renew these systems when they become dated. And you need to run some security tests from time to time, like having a locksmith check the cameras, fix some lock problems, see that everything is alright. Only then will you have peace of mind – your employees too. Think of it this way. When the employees work in a secure environment, they feel safe. And their productivity or creativity goes up. And that’s good for business.