As such the human factor of physical security is the most critical component; however it is also the most neglected aspect of most physical security programs.
Physical security cannot be wholly successful without the human factor element and the active support of these user groups. For example, when the aim is to protect a critical facility from attack or to provide access control for an office building it is necessary to engage people on the proper use of any security systems that are in place, for instance security alarms. If the alarm goes off and employees have no idea what it signifies then the security system will have failed.
All users should be aware not only of what their roles and responsibilities are in protecting information resources, but also of how they can protect information and respond to any potential security threat or issue. Security awareness programs address the need to educate all people in an organization so they can help to effectively protect the organization 's information assets.
WAYS OF INCLUDING THE HUMAN FACTOR IN PHYSICAL SECURITY
Pre-employment screening is an important part of the human factor in physical security. It seeks to verify the credentials of future employees who will have access to organisation sites and sensitive information and to check that they meet preconditions of employment (e.g. that they are legally permitted to take up an offer of employment).
Pre-employment screening can be used to confirm an applicant’s identity, na...
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...cally guard forces, such as those who undertake patrols, guard entrance points, and carry out security screening. Motivated, attentive and observant staff in these roles can form a highly-effective deterrent presence and final line of defence where other interventions (e.g. electronic security access) have failed. Conversely, demotivated staff can be a single point of failure within a security system if they do not perform their role effectively.
Any physical security program needs to include an education process that increases the human factor’s situational awareness and makes those involved willing to report anything suspicious. Active participation in the security system by employees leads to a successful all round physical security program. The effectiveness of security systems can also be increased through user education, training, and integration.
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