Archives: March, 2008

Doug Bedell — March 31, 2008, 7:31 am

Stuck With a ‘Security Mindset’

Bruce Schneier has written an engaging essay on the “security mindset” – the attitude of mind that enables some people to detect security weaknesses sooner and better than others. It’ s nearly the opposite of the engineering mindset, Schneier feels. “Good engineering involves thinking about how things can be made to work; the security mindset […]

Doug Bedell — March 28, 2008, 7:45 pm

REAL ID ‘Not One Size Fits All’

The Department of Homeland Security says the concept of REAL ID is being maligned – it does not require a national ID card that Americans will be required to carry. Writing on the DHS blog, Stewart A. Baker, Assistant Secretary for Policy, explains that REAL ID simply “requires that states meet minimum security standards when […]

Doug Bedell — March 26, 2008, 9:32 am

Trash-Truck Security Spotters

Here’s a great example of a systems approach to security – “systems” in an organizational or community sense rather than an electronic one. Riverside County, CA, and Waste Management, Inc. are training trash truck drivers to be, in effect, rolling security spotters. “You might drive around in 20,000-pound trucks, but you’re almost invisible,” a Waste […]

Doug Bedell — March 24, 2008, 2:57 pm

ASIS Offers Preemployment Screening Guideline

ASIS International continues to strengthen security professionalism by issuing for comment proposed guidelines on mitigating risks and responding to crises. Its latest draft guideline is on “Preemployment Background Screening.” It covers the reasons for preemployment screening and legal issues and considerations that can arise in doing them. ASIS guidelines are likely to become court-accepted legal […]

Doug Bedell — March 20, 2008, 8:35 am

A New Security Circuit: Turning Off the Lights Automatically

We wrote last time about how big companies are bringing IT and physical security together, a concept known as convergence. Here’s an example from of how access control, CCTV and alarm management over local and wide area networks is yielding comprehensive savings at 40 Liberty Mutual Insurance Company buildings across the U.S. The integration […]

Doug Bedell — March 18, 2008, 12:31 pm

Big Companies Bringing Security, IT Functions Together

Big companies are starting to bring together – “converge” in the lingo – the physical security and IT security functions. A good place to get a handle on that trend is research by Honeywell, as reported by It found, reports InfoWatch editor Geoff Kohl, that “52 percent of the companies surveyed had a formal […]

Doug Bedell — March 14, 2008, 9:56 am

Guidance on DHS Preparedness Grants

The Department of Homeland Security has announced new guidelines for its 2008 grant programs. There are many significant changes and 14 more areas can now compete for Urban Area Security Grants. For insight into the changes, check out the DHS fact sheet on the 2008 grants, totalling more than $3 billion to states, territories, urban […]

Doug Bedell — March 13, 2008, 7:54 am

Security a 24-Hour Challenge

The New York Police Department recognizes what everyone in the field needs to be mindful of: Security is a 24-hour challenge that, despite reasonable efforts, isn’t infallible in a free society. Such reflections, by officials in New York and elsewhere, are prompted by three incidents in which New York’s “bicycle bomber” has set off homemade […]

Doug Bedell — March 10, 2008, 9:41 pm

When Shooting Starts…

Security may fail. One scenario in which that dismal reality can occur is an “active shooter” incident. That’s when a gunman appears at a workplace or on a campus and starts shooting. The Center for Personal Protection and Safety thinks it’s possible for people in the shooter’s field of fire to increase their chances of […]

Doug Bedell — March 7, 2008, 9:54 am

‘Conversations’ at Checkpoints

It can be hazardous to hold a prolonged ‘inquiry’ at a checkpoint. Tempers can flare. It’s advisable to have a barrier – like PRO Barrier’s Arrestor – that can rise quickly with them. Such thoughts are prompted by a posting to a forum on passing tractor trailers through security gates. Occasionally, the writer observes, […]