Security Technology Executive

SEP-OCT 2017

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16 SECURIT Y TECHNOLOGY E XECUTIVE • September/October 2017 • www. COVER STORY T his article delves into secu- rity, or what the writer describes as a resilience function. The aims of this article are to establish a mindset and potentially an awakening around brand/image challenges and risks to the resiliency/security function within an organization. Functional risks are rarely discussed in a security/resiliency per- spective but are those that could create employment issues or an inability to sup- port our respective goals from more direct threats, such as workplace violence, intel- lectual property theft and similar. Survival of the Fittest Survival of the fittest, Darwinism and its evolutionary theory does not only apply to nature, but it also applies to the physi- cal security personnel, and more broad- ly, the security function within an orga- nization/company. In my travels over the last two decades, I have had the pleasure to work with security leaders, those that are uniquely alert to their environment, and those that are distracted and regret- tably a few that are naïve. In some Functional Risks: Adapt or Die The competent resilience leader walks a fine line in the organizational hierarchy that requires constant adaptation By Sean Ahrens, CPP, C SC instances, I have witnessed those that are distracted/naïve reacting too slowly to a functional risk, change in environment, culture, company/organi- zational mission only to have it quickly escalate outside their control with simi- lar negative outcomes described in the theory of Darwinism. Adaptation is a key component to Dar- winism and it is a leadership trait that I have witnessed in proactive security leaders who are intrinsically connected to their environment/business/culture. These individuals more readily recognize and are more likely to adapt to functional risks/threats to their security function. The following represents broad thinking around the need for security personnel to constantly have a mindset around adapta- tion to functional risks. The security function within an orga- nization is one of the most misunder- stood parts of an organization and I tip my hat those that recognize the benefits of a finely tuned security function. For those in a security function, the follow- ing is not something new, but rather an affirmation that a competent, proactive security leader(s) can wear many hats in an organization in support of their objective of preventing threats to orga- nizational assets, and moreover respond- ing to events with the goal of minimiz- ing the recovery time and impacts to the organizations brand and image. Beyond the multi-disciplinary responsibilities that a security leader has, they will be the person that everyone in the organi- zation will seek guidance and direction from during a crisis. It can be difficult to fully convey the value of a physical security function with- in an organization because many consider a security function as a cost-center. This is reactive knowing that somewhere in the world security program is effectively deterring an incident before it escalates. It is impossible for the writer to capture the value of this statement regarding deter- rence, because it is unfounded. This is one of the root problems with what many refer to as the physical security program. Secu- rity does not receive the visibility within the organization because the outcome of the event is not continually realized. Comparably, how do we know the effec- tiveness of a security program without an actual occurrence? IT and cybersecurity Artwork Courtesy of Kyla Vana

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