The smartest new security technology is in your pocket

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When FMs are considering the technologies needed to ensure security on their premises is optimal, they should look beyond the obvious, as Kevin Ward of Ward Security explains.

Technology has revolutionised security in recent decades and will undoubtedly continue to do so. Many of the everyday technologies that help to deliver an effective, holistic security stance would have seemed like science fiction only a few years ago. CCTV for example has been commonplace for a long time, but this has been augmented by a raft of newer intelligent devices and sensors that integrate seamlessly to make the task of site monitoring easier.

However, when considering the most effective security technologies we now need to look beyond the obvious monitoring technologies and focus on the technologies that apply more directly to the human security element. It’s all well and good having state-of-the-art CCTV systems, monitors and sensors all working together to give a comprehensive view of a site, but where you now need to focus attention is on the emerging networked technologies that help security staff to connect, collect information, report, and, ultimately, make the right decisions.

Mobile technology has become ubiquitous. We all have smartphones and tablets and are comfortable with their presence and use. Yet new applications developed to take advantage of mobile technologies are the modern spearhead in security. These applications are helping to strengthen the link between technology and humans.

As with all technology, the key to successful adoption and implementation is meeting the three conditions necessary for behavioural change; Trigger, Action, and Motivation.

Applying this model to facilities management, let’s say we want security officers to report more building faults, we should consider what exactly is the trigger? A building fault may be the trigger but does the Security Officer know how to recognise one? What’s the action? How easy and simple is it for the security office to report the building fault? And is the security officer incentivised to report the building fault?

Technology can help with all of these conditions, but it’s most commonly associated with making tasks easier; easier to call someone (the mobile phone), easier to find where you are (smartphone GPS), and easier to be organised (eg. synchronised calendars).

Ultimately, the key to effective use of technology is now in the collection, organisation and sharing of information that allows people to make better use of the technological tools at their disposal. At Ward Security we use a proof of presence, reporting, notification and management application called SIRV which is helping our officers to be better connected and more efficient, and effectively to be fully ‘plugged in’ to the security suite.

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