Your Source for Security Cameras & Other Security Equipment

Security Tips

Perimeter Security

Whether you are securing your home or business, perimeter security is often your first line of defense. Aside from the exterior of the structure, perimeter security creates boundaries to keep intruders out. If you are considering perimeter security, there are numerous options available to you – here’s what you need to know.

Locks
Locks are very important to perimeter security. If you have nothing protecting your property beyond the walls of your home or building, you will need to invest in strong, sturdy locks. The most common breach would be forced entry, which simply destroys the lock to gain access. To safeguard against this, you want to choose locks that make use of hardened metal alloys that are as thick as possible.

Cutting attacks are common if you are using padlocks on your gates. Aside from the shackles of the locks, the hasp or chain being secured by the padlock may also be targeted for cutting. If these are weaker than the lock, the strength of the lock will not matter.

When it comes to covert entry, bump keys are more of a concern than lock picking, as the latter wastes time and effort. The internal complexity for locks will help increase perimeter security and prevent unauthorized key duplication.

Walls
Unlike a fence, walls provide more privacy as they better obstruct visibility. Higher walls mean lower visibility and a greater obstacle to gain entry. The downside is that the decreased visibility affects both sides, meaning that while outsiders may not be able to see in, you may not be able to see anyone approaching the property.

Luckily, the visibility concerns for high walls can be resolved with the use of security cameras or other forms of documentation (such as security guards). Documentation is a key consideration (which will be discussed further), but it is not always feasible for some.

In the end, it all comes down to the intention of your perimeter security. With a wall, you get more privacy and a sturdy barrier which allows you to put more focus on securing the gate.

Fencing
Fences offer extreme flexibility in that the price, look, and functionality have the most range. You can adjust the visibility by choosing different designs and even growing ivy or other plants around it. In extreme cases, most common fences may be easier to electrify, depending on the material of the fence.

Unless you have concerns about automotive ramming threats, the fact that a fence is weaker than a wall may be a minor detail. However, fences may be compromised at certain points, whether from vandalism or wear, thus creating entryways which defeat the purpose of perimeter security measures. Even if the openings are not wide enough for humans, you run the risk of animal infestation or pet escape.

Wood fences and chain link fences are often the most common types, and usually signify a boundary that others should not cross, or simply denote a property line. Fences alone are rarely high security, but with electrification or barbed wire, they can be somewhat intimidating.

Gates
A gate is the moving section on a gate or wall that allows entry and exit through perimeter security. Because this is usually the only point of entry and exit around the perimeter of a building, the gate will need a locking mechanism.

If you are planning on taking vehicles past the perimeter security, you may want to use a motorized track and electronic lock. For gates with less traffic or only foot traffic, choose a high-security padlock. There may also be a gate setup that allows you to use a deadbolt and or/keyed handle/knob.

For effective perimeter security, a keyed handle/knob may not be the best choice. A deadbolt provides more security, however, the strength of the deadbolt must be considered. But keep in mind, if the lock is too strong, the material of the gate may be attacked, or intruders may simply climb over.

Lighting
Perimeter security systems should always consider lighting, and one of the first things to assess is shadows. Trees, pillars and other tall obstructions will create dark shadows for criminals to lurk. With proper light, you afford yourself the ability to see criminals approaching or attempting to bypass your perimeter security.

Motion sensor lights are effective in that they focus attention and are often the choice for many residential buildings without security guards. For residents, a light turning on suddenly will often alert them of unexpected movement around the house. For those properties with high walls, or an obstructing fence, the abrupt light hopefully catches the attention of neighbors or pedestrians.

Despite drawing attention, your security depends on whether or not bystanders or neighbors intervene. Everyone has an interest in preventing crime, but if someone is unaware of the threats or the victim, people may do nothing to avoid confrontation. It may behoove you and your property to get to know your neighbors and keep a lookout for each other.

Alerts & Notification
Some people may struggle with the decision of investing in a dog or an alarm system. While getting both is definitely an option, the decision will likely come down to your ability to take care of an animal. When it comes to alarms, you will want one that offers monitored security so that authorities can be notified in case of emergency.

However, these notifications are only effective if response times are within the average time it takes to commit a break-in. If not, alerts and notifications are rather useless. A loud alarm may help to alert anyone who is around to the crime that is taking place.

If you’re looking for more discreet notifications, a smart lock with access notifications might be the solution. This allows you to know when a lock has been opened, and can be extremely helpful if you suspect any internal threats.

Documentation
Most perimeter security systems rely on security cameras. They are largely accessible and are great for capturing evidence of threats and criminal acts.

Before installing security cameras, you should know what is allowed and what is not. You must abide by the law when it comes to documentation efforts otherwise your footage will be useless and may even get you in hot water.

When choosing cameras, you should keep your security intentions in mind. If you need footage that will hold up in court, you will need the right kind of camera to record quality video in that environment. You will need to consider glare from the daylight and possibly night vision. Also, you need to consider placement as you may need multiple cameras to adequately cover your perimeter. If you have more questions regarding security cameras systems and installation, feel free to call us at 888-203-6294.

Natural Barriers
A positive natural barrier is something that offers another level of security to your property. This can be anything from the proximity to a police station to a single, long road leading to your home.

Consequently, there are also natural barriers that prevent you from taking full advantage of your possible perimeter security system. For example, a treeline on the side of your property may offer a natural border, however, it may also help intruders cover their approach. Also, motion sensor cameras and lights placed in heavy foot traffic areas may produce lots of false alarms, becoming more of a nuisance than an effective security measure.

Your best bet is to identify what works for you and what does not in terms of security. You shouldn’t invest in a method of perimeter security just to use it. Focus on the positive barriers and try to compensate for any negative barriers you cannot change.

Aesthetics
The consideration for aesthetics is to find a balance between it and your perimeter security. Rather than choosing to make the property look good and then incorporate security, you should be trying to make the security you need look good.

If you are adding to your landscape or home, you should always consider how it will affect your perimeter security. It is best to opt for something with a neutral or positive effect, not something that will be a detriment.

Access Control
Who has access to your property is a very important part of making your perimeter security work to your benefit. Key control is a good starting point (numeric codes, RFID remotes, physical keys, etc.). With codes and biometric locks, your access control management software may make it quite simple to know who is entering the property and when. If any issues arise, it is easy to simply revoke privileges.

Those who have access should be trusted individuals. You should be sure that they will not take advantage of your property and will take the necessary precautions to protect their key from being stolen or misused.

Key control for physical keys can be taken care of by investing in locks with patented keyways. This will improve your protection against most forms of covert entry, but mostly it will prevent unauthorized key duplication.

Which perimeter security methods do you find most effective? Share with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

Visit SecurityCamExpert.com to browse our selection of quality CCTV surveillance systems and learn more about our Installation and support services.

CyberLabLA

It seems Los Angeles is continuing its efforts to shed light on cybersecurity in hopes to decrease risks all around. Initially, the city used federal grant funds to install tools to centralize cybersecurity issue monitoring. Now, officials have unveiled a cybersecurity initiative geared toward businesses and residents.

The Los Angeles Cyber Lab (CyberLabLA) is a new public-private-partnership led by a Board of Advisors including Mayor Eric Garcetti along with top Los Angeles businesses and government officials. CyberLabLA’s mission is to protect personal and protected information from malicious cyber threats by sharing the latest cybersecurity threat data, alerts and intelligence gathered by those involved. Free membership will be open to all businesses and Los Angeles residents.

While there have been threat-sharing partnerships in the past, none have emerged to address an entire region or small- and medium-sized businesses like this program plans to do. And despite the fact that companies in the same industry are more likely to face similar threats than those in unrelated industries, all businesses are expected to find value. Mayor Garcetti hopes that through shared knowledge of threats, regardless of industry, businesses in Los Angeles will be better protected.

Still in its infancy, CyberLabLA will roll out in three phases. Phase 1 will begin with Protection and Alerts in which Los Angeles will share information generated from its Integrated Security Operations Center (ISOC) with all members. These updates include cybersecurity data, alerts, indicators of compromise and threat intelligence. Phase 2 will invite members to share data with the organization, sans confidential or proprietary information for added security. Phase 3 will develop the Cyber Lab Innovation Incubator (Incubator). Security vendors will be able to test appliances and tools via virtual connections to a live, but isolated, city of Los Angeles network (“Honeypot”). The Incubator will be populated with student interns, affording them real world experience in a security environment. Eventually, the Incubator will generate additional intelligence and information to share with members.

Initial advisors include Anschutz Entertainment Group (Staples Center), Cisco, Motorola, Cedars-Sinai, City National Bank, Dollar Shave Club and SoCal Edison. The city’s move to push cybersecurity as a public service will not only benefit businesses, but its effects will trickle down and help to protect customers and residents as well.

What are your thoughts on CyberLabLA? Would you consider joining? Share with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

For your physical security, browse our selection of CCTV surveillance systems at SecurityCamExpert.com. To request a site survey, free quote, or to schedule an installation, please call 888-203-6294.

The Importance Of Business Security Systems

Unfortunately, for many businesses, physical security is often overlooked. Some may have budget concerns while others may simply be too busy running their business. Sometimes it takes an actual incident for businesses to consider installing a security system.

Whatever the excuse, security should never be dismissed; it should be considered from the very beginning. As much as we would like to believe our chances of being targeted are slim, the truth is it happens more than we would like to admit. And thanks to advanced technology and increased demand, there are a variety of security solutions to suit different budgets and needs.

Here are some of the ways your business can benefit from a solid security system.

Deter Criminal Activity
This is obviously one of the most important reasons businesses look into security solutions. The presence of security cameras tends to discourage criminals for fear of being caught. In turn, they much prefer businesses which do not have proper surveillance systems in place.

In addition, security systems enable businesses to act quickly in notifying authorities when incidents do occur, helping to de-escalate the situation faster.

Protect Your Business Assets
Regardless of your company’s insurance policy, the loss of certain assets can still be devastating. For example, if your customers’ data is stolen, the repercussions could be extremely damaging and irreversible. Security systems come into play to secure assets which cannot be accounted for via insurance payouts.

Enhance Employee Safety
Employee safety is important, and security systems can help to protect and reassure your workers. For those who work late shifts, odd hours, or are often alone on the premises, security cameras can offer peace of mind. Should an accident or dangerous incident occur during this time, an advanced security system would be able to send out an alert and provide evidence as needed.

You will want to extend your security camera system to the employee parking lot as well, monitoring employees and they arrive and leave work, walking to and from their cars. Employees will also feel safer knowing their vehicles are under a watchful eye.

Save Money
While you may think the costs are too high, security solutions can save you money in the long run. First, many insurance companies offer discounted premiums to companies that utilize security systems to deter criminal activity. Some insurance companies even go as far as helping small businesses by defraying the costs. Also, surveillance footage helps to speed up the claims process.

The surveillance footage may even be used to defend your company in the case of frivolous lawsuits. For example, if a customer spends time on your property then falsely claims they were injured, without security cameras, it is their word against yours. Video surveillance could prove who is liable and potentially save you from expensive lawsuits.

Enjoy Greater Peace Of Mind
Aside from the benefits outlined above, there is an intangible feeling of peace knowing that your business is secure. Most advanced systems now offer remote access around the clock, allowing you to check in from wherever you may be.

The next, very important step is to choose the right security system for you. There are numerous security solutions that offer different features and functions, so you should take the time to evaluate your needs and research different systems. Feel free to browse our stock at SecurityCamExpert.com. We offer free quotes, site surveys, and provide installation and support services. If you need any help or have any questions, call us at 888-203-6294 and we will gladly assist you. You can also connect with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Yelp!

Fingerprint Sensor Myths

As the Internet of Things continues to grow, more and more of our personal and business matters are being handled online. Thus, the internet is becoming a hotbed for cyber attacks, demonstrated by the various hacking stories in the news lately. Smartphones and PCs are often targeted since they usually contain a wealth of personal data. Thus fingerprint sensors are being implemented on these devices in order to properly identify and grant access to the legitimate owner.

But with new technology comes new concerns and critiques. Some people believe that fingerprint sensors are not as secure as they are being touted, while others believe the concept is simply not feasible. Here are some of the most common myths about this biometric technology.

Myth: It’s easy to spoof a fingerprint.
Despite its portrayal on the big screen, taking a high-resolution photo of a fingerprint or recovering a latent print would be extremely difficult. This method is known as an “attack spoof” and, because of its challenging nature, would not be a method that a criminal would likely use. With the exception of an extremely high-value target, it simply would not be worth the effort.

The main reason this myth persist is because this process can be easily demonstrated with a willing participant. You can create a spoof of your own fingerprint by creating a mold with various substances, including glue or clay. Fortunately, new anti-spoofing algorithms are constantly working to combat this.

Myth: Optical sensors are less secure than capacitive sensors because they store the actual fingerprint image.
Optical sensors do NOT store the complete fingerprint image. Instead, the biometric information is converted into a “template”. This template retains certain parameters while discarding the rest, and is then encrypted when the abstract data is stored. Since it is not a complete image, even if the fingerprint template is somehow retrieved, recreating a fingerprint from the template data is not possible. This applies to both optical and capacitive sensors.

Myth: If a bad guy gets the fingerprint image off of your phone or PC, he can use it to access your phone.
As previously mentioned, fingerprint images are not stored on your smartphone or PC, therefore, they cannot be stolen from your device.

Myth: Multi-factor biometric security on mobile devices is hard and/or expensive to do.
There is some truth to this. Mobile devices already have fingerprint sensors and front-facing cameras, so we can expect to see an increase in multi-factor authentication based on your fingerprint and face. Other combinations (e.g. iris and voice recognition) will likely follow.

Now comes the hard part. The algorithms that combine multiple biometric factors into a single trust score need to be thoroughly verified. While this is a complex process, expect to see it become available in the near future. When that happens, we will see a strong network in place that supports multi-factor authentication across various platforms and applications.

Myth: Contextual factors aren’t enough to secure a mobile device.
This statement should read that contextual factors “alone” are not enough to secure a mobile device. When combined with biometric authentication, contextual factors can be part of a smart and strong security solution. For example, smartwatches can stay unlocked until you take them off, offering convenience and security. Contextual factors, such as location, proximity, room monitoring, etc., will allow your device to remain unlocked as long as you are in your office, or to authorize transactions without additional authentication.

Myth: Fingerprint sensors have to be on the home button or back of the smartphone.
Fingerprint sensors are available in a broad range of form factors, including slim sensors that fit within the power button. New sensors also work under the cover glass and detect fingerprints so that the physical home button can be eliminated, thus enabling edge-to-edge infinity displays. We may eventually see solutions in which the entire display contains sensors, allowing an effective fingerprint scan from anywhere on the screen.

Myth: Biometric authentication is just for security.
This technology is not only used for security, but can also enhance the user experience. For example, if you are driving a car that uses a fingerprint scan on the start button, it may adjust preferences (e.g. seat, mirrors, infotainment) to match the user. In the case of a smart home, a fingerprint scan may unlock a door, trigger preferred lighting and music settings, and possibly restrict access to certain home features (for time-shares or rentals).

Myth: Optical sensors are too big/power-hungry for fingerprint scanning in a mobile device.
Thanks to technological advances, optical sensors are small and efficient enough to be used in mobile devices. Some optical sensors can generate more in-depth fingerprint images which allow for more details to be used in the fingerprint template.

Myth: All fingerprint solutions are equal, so cost should be the deciding factor.
Fingerprint-sensor providers offer a range of solutions utilizing different technologies (e.g. capacitive vs. optical) with varying security levels, form-factor options, power consumption, durability, and software. It is best to look at the specifications of both the hardware and software involved before making your decision, rather than basing your decision solely on cost.

Myth: Biometrics are too difficult/too expensive to manage for use in enterprise environments.
When it comes to enterprise environments, fingerprint solutions are actually more secure than username/password configurations. With fingerprint solutions, the need for password resets or IT support calls are eliminated. Because of this, maintenance and support for these systems is easier, which is crucial in today’s cloud-based business world. And updating PCs is simple via a peripheral USB dongle-based fingerprint sensor, or a mouse with embedded fingerprint sensor.

Myth: Encryption is enough to protect a fingerprint template file.
Encryption is used to protect the template file while it is being stored, generally in a small amount of non-volatile RAM (NVRAM). However, more protection is necessary for when the template must be decrypted, for example, during the testing for a match. These security architectures can include match-on-host solutions, secure element, and match-in-sensor solutions.

What are your thoughts on the future of fingerprint sensors and biometric technology? Connect with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

Invest in your security and safety when you shop at SecurityCamExpert.com. Find CCTV surveillance cameras, DVRs, NVRs, and more to monitor and secure your home or business. Call 888-203-6294 to learn more!

Keep Your Business Data Safe & Secure

For businesses, it is important to keep your data secure and protect your customers. Recent hacks and data breaches have proven that one small misstep can cost you a fortune. Don’t become the next example – heed these helpful business security tips to ensure that your business remains safe and secure.

“Least Privilege” Protocol
Employees should only have access to the systems they need to do their job, no more. Opening access to sensitive systems for all employees is unnecessary and increases the security risk.

Control Removable Media
Limit the use of external devices (ex. USB memory sticks) especially those brought in from home by employees. These external devices are a main route for malware to disrupt systems.

Secure The “Doors”
Old systems, network devices and sites should always be removed and decommissioned. Forgetting about these may allow hackers to access your network.

Start-To-Finish Process
Devise a plan that encompasses the following: network privileges and devices for new employees, what happens when employee roles are changed, and the protocol for when employees leave. In the event an employee is leaving, be sure to revoke access and collect company devices upon departure. Please note that this process can become quite complex if workers used personal devices in the workplace.

Define “Tolerable Risk”
We all take risks every day, varying from minuscule to major. It is important to understand how much of a risk your business is willing to take to get the job done. For example, are you willing to allow staffers to use their own devices or take data files home? While this may help with productivity, you also run the risk of devices being lost, stolen, hacked, or contaminated with malware.

Training
You MUST properly train your staff in understanding the risks and legal requirements around data security. Explain the different issues and best practices. Without proper training, you leave your organization vulnerable.

Observe & Report
Ensure that your staff knows to be vigilant and report suspicious activity (ex. suspicious emails, attachments) or any unexpected changes to the company system.

As you may have concluded, much of the data security risks start within the business rather than on the outside. Most of these mistakes result from accidental or ill-considered actions by employees, thus, proper education and training is pertinent. In addition, data loss prevention (DLP) technology can prevent unauthorized saving, copying, printing, or emailing of sensitive files. This will prevent insiders from compromising data, whether accidental or criminal.

Do you have any other security tips to share? Connect with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

Shop our CCTV surveillance packages, security cameras, DVRs, NVRs, and more at SecurityCamExpert.com. Call 888-203-6294 to learn more about our products and installation services.

Choosing A Smart Home Security System

More and more people are turning their homes into smart homes. What once was seen as an extravagant luxury for the wealthy has now become accessible and affordable for nearly all homeowners.

While there are many ways to upgrade, smart home security seems to be the top priority for most home owners. Aside from protecting your home from burglars, fires, and other potential threats, you may also benefit from smart home security by getting rebates or special discounts from insurance companies.

Advances in technology have enabled smart home security manufacturers to offer varying levels of home security systems at different price points. Here’s how you can protect your home, from basic to advanced features.

If You Are On A Strict Budget…
At the bare minimum, smart home security starts with a camera. Smart security cameras can provide footage to identify burglars after the crime has been committed or can alert owners when unauthorized activity is detected, allowing burglars to be caught in the act. These cameras not only offer security for your home, but can be used as baby monitors and nanny cams. Special features may include the ability to differentiate between human and pets to prevent false alarms, as well as two-way audio to enable communication with anyone in the room

As beneficial as a one-camera setup can be, there are also limitations. The first and most obvious limitation being that one camera can only cover one room. Also, you must actively monitor the feed to maintain security. If you would like a system that needs less attention, you may want to explore other, more advanced options.

If You Are Looking For More Comprehensive Home Security…
You will want to look for a home security system that addresses the different ways your home security can be breached. Additional security components include motion sensors, door and window sensors, and surveillance signs.

  • Motion sensors are installed on walls to detect movement through an infrared sensor. If you have pets, you can adjust the height to avoid false alarms.
  • Door and window sensors are attached accordingly and either sound an alarm and/or alert your device when these are opened.
  • While it’s not exactly smart technology, surveillance signs can help to deter burglars from even targeting your home. If deciding between a home with or without a security system, burglars will likely choose the latter because there’s less of a risk of getting caught.

If You Want A Highly Sophisticated Home Security System…
For around-the-clock surveillance of your home, you may want to invest in a security company that offers monitoring services for a monthly fee. While the hardware is almost the same as the aforementioned systems, when the alarm is triggered, the security company is notified and they assess the danger and alert the necessary authorities. Since you may not have your phone or device available at all times (ex. movies, traveling), this service can come in very handy.

There are plenty of DIY and professional smart home security solutions on the market today. Which one is your system of choice? Share with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

Protect your home with an affordable CCTV surveillance camera system from SecurityCamExpert.com. Browse our stock online or call 888-203-6294 to discuss your options with a representative today!

Prevent Ransomware Attacks

Ransomware is often transmitted by email or web pop-ups and involves hackers holding your data hostage with threats of destroying it unless a ransom is paid. The recent WannaCry ransomware attack involved cybercriminals hijacking numerous Windows computers in more than 150 countries.

What is unfortunate about this attack, and sadly, many other attacks, is that cautious online behavior and safe security practices could have prevented this. To keep your business and data safe, check out these expert security tips.

Update Software
The WannaCry attack is believed to have been spread through an email download. Dishearteningly, a security patch for this vulnerability was released eight weeks prior to the attack, thus, the crisis could have been avoided.

Users often refrain from actively checking for updates, leaving their equipment and data at risk. An easy remedy is to set up your system for automatic installation when updates are available. And just because Windows computers were the main target in this situation, does not mean that other devices and systems are in the clear. Remember that all operating systems are at risk, so regardless of the devices you use, you should always install the latest security updates and patches.

Install Antivirus Software
Aside from keeping your software up to speed, antivirus software can help prevent malware from infecting your computer. Just remember to keep it up-to-date and only download antivirus apps from reputable vendors (ex. Kaspersky Lab, Bitdefender, Malwarebytes).

Be Wary Of Suspicious Emails And Pop-ups
As previously mentioned, it is believed that the WannaCry attack stemmed from email attachments. With that said, we should all be wary of dubious emails containing links or attachments. Things to look out for include the sender (make sure it’s coming from a legitimate address) and any typos or grammatical errors in the body. If there are hyperlinks, hover over them (but don’t click!) to see whether they direct you to suspicious web pages. If an email appears to come from your bank, credit card company, or internet service provider, keep in mind that they will never ask for sensitive information (ex. password, social security number). Lastly, just say no to pop-up windows, regardless if they are advertising software products that remove malware. Whatever it may be is too good to be true and not worth the risk, so simply close the pop-up carefully.

Data Backups
Generally speaking, creating a copy of your data is always a good idea in case your computer fails or is lost. In the event that your computer is successfully hijacked, you can be your own hero. You can simply wipe your computer clean and restore your data with your backup copy. For added security, back up your data onto an external drive, and then store it somewhere safe and away from your computer. And be sure to backup your data regularly.

Create A Business Security Plan
Applying companywide security updates for larger businesses can be challenging, which is why a security plan will come in handy. A strict schedule for installing the latest updates with minimal interruption to productivity should be implemented. The IT department should also actively and regularly educate and test employees on spotting suspicious emails.

Already Infected?
If you find that you are a victim of ransomware, your first step should be to disconnect your computer from the internet to limit spreading the attack to other machines. Next, report the crime to law enforcement and get help from a tech professional who specializes in data recovery (this is the best person to detail your options for you). Remember to not lose hope, as future security tools may be able to unlock your files.

Only in extreme cases should you consider paying a ransom. For example, if you have no backups and the encrypted files are of great value, paying the ransom may be your only route. However, in the WannaCry case, you should NOT pay the ransom as some victims have and are not hearing back from the cybercriminals.

What security measures or plans do you implement at home or at your business? Share your top security tips with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest!

Invest in our excellent security cameras and CCTV surveillance equipment for your physical security. Browse online at SecurityCamExpert.com or call 888-203-6294 today!

More Than Just Cyber Security

When running an online business, one of the most important aspects is security. Aside from protecting your company data, customers want to feel secure and know that they are safe when connecting and shopping on your website. Things like SSL and encryption are standard for any legitimate ecommerce business.

Unfortunately, small businesses with physical locations sometimes overlook the proper security measures, which can end up hurting the company in many ways.

Build confidence with your consumers by employing smart security practices with both your physical locations as well as your online presence.

Benefits Of A Secure Business
By securing your business, first and foremost, you are increasing safety for your employees and your business overall. When taking the appropriate measures, you can create a cohesive team and a sense of belonging among your staff. Applying on-premise security measures delivers the message that you value your employees and are concerned for their safety. In doing so, you are also improving job satisfaction, which can lead to employee retention.

Aside from improving employee morale, securing your business shows your customers that your staff and brand are worth protecting. Security methods also convey professionalism and help to build trust with your customers. By strengthening the legitimacy of your company, you are building a strong foundation for your business.

So how can you improve security in your business? Here are a few things you can implement to get started.

Access Control
One of the most effective ways to protect your business is to control who gets in or out. Make it harder for unauthorized guests to gain access by graduating from a simple lock and key to access control cards. They are much harder to duplicate than keys, and when someone leaves the company or you need to revoke access to one person for whatever reason, all you need to do is change the database – no need to change the locks or the entry code.

Photo ID
Adding photos ID cards or badges will help your customers clearly identify your team members, as well as promote value amongst your team. It also adds an additional layer of security in helping to identify who should and should not be on site. It may prove beneficial for businesses to invest in their own ID card printer to avoid any possible counterfeits.

Easily Identify Visitors And Contractors
If left to their own devices, visitors and contractors may pose a risk in your building. Make sure you have a check-in system as well as photo pass and color coded lanyard so that everyone on the team can easily identify who’s who. Your team should also know the protocol for when an intruder is on the premises.

Secure Networks
Although we are mainly focused on physical security, it is worth mentioning that cyber security is also of the utmost importance. These days, it has bearing on your physical security as well. Strong passwords, multi-step authentication and security from the cloud are smart and simple ways to minimize risks for your business.

Security Culture Among Team
Your team should have a strong knowledge of your security procedures. You should have security specialists analyze your business needs and assist you in creating clear, actionable policies for your employees to follow. Once implemented, these should be reviewed for all employees so that your team is on the same page and understand the company’s security policy.

Security procedures can play a crucial role in building a legitimate, successful business. What security measures do you implement to safeguard your business? Share with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

Contact us at 888-203-6294 or visit SecurityCamExpert.com to learn more about our CCTV surveillance packages, site surveys, and installation services for your home or business today!

Simple Security Measures For Your Business

Despite the fact that businesses are four times more likely to be burglarized than residences thanks to their computers and electronics, it seems very few small businesses employ appropriate security measures. According to Security Magazine, only 31% of small businesses take the necessary steps to protect themselves.

An unfortunate example of lax security is the former office building of Draft Sharks, chosen because of its alarm system. The subscription-based fantasy football advice site learned the hard way that, although the building was alarmed, their particular office was not. Thieves broke into a window of an adjacent restaurant and were able to break into the Draft Sharks office. While $1000 worth of stolen computer equipment may seem like a relatively minor loss, the data on those machines was worth much more.

After this event, Draft Sharks changed their ways and adjusted their security measures. Now, nothing of value is stored on-site. Work laptops are taken home daily and everything is stored in the cloud.

You do not necessarily need to take drastic measures to protect your business. Even the smallest changes in security can produce great benefits. Here are some smart yet simple ways to improve your business security.

Better Door Locks
Your door locks often act as your first line of defense. If you have a weak lock, criminals can easily pick it and break in. Choose a lock that is strong and impenetrable. With so many more advanced and smart locks on the market now, you are sure to find one that will suit your needs and protect your business.

Improved Lighting
Bright, illuminated areas make it hard for criminals to creep around. Keep the exterior of your property well-lit after hours to prevent thieves from targeting your business. You may also want to consider keeping the interior lights on as well. That way, it is much more obvious when someone has broken in.

Security Cameras
Video surveillance, whether monitored in house or by a professional service, will keep you alert and aware of what’s going on within your business. Should something occur, you can provide video evidence to law enforcement.

Bolted Down Safe
If your clients demand confidentiality, a heavy, relatively inconspicuous, fireproof safe bolted to the ground may be a sound investment. It provides a place for you to store sensitive documents away from danger and the wrong hands.

Securing Digital Assets
Aside from your physical equipment, your data needs security as well. By storing your data in the cloud, you may still access your files in case your equipment is damaged or stolen, and the cloud also offers encryption for added security.

As you can see, business security can be simple and easy. There are plenty of cost-effective options to secure your company data and equipment. Share your tips for business security with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

For cost-effective, quality security cameras and surveillance packages, feel free to visit SecurityCamExpert.com and browse our selection. To learn more about our installation and support services, or to request a site survey or free quote, please call 888-203-6294.

Obsolete Tech Security

While it is a testament to the quality of the product, systems that have maintained their performance over many years may eventually pose a risk to your business. Although they may be working fine, if the manufacturer discontinues support for that product and you continue to use it, your security risks will steadily increase. Because support is eliminated, your system will no longer receive the necessary updates and patches, leaving your system vulnerable to hackers.

A great example of this is the case with Windows Vista. Moving forward, it will no longer be supported, thus no further security updates or functionality fixes will be provided. Security risks run high the longer you leave these unsupported systems within your business.

End-Of-Life Technology
There are many cases that prove the high risks of end-of life technology. Recently, a remote code execution (RCE) vulnerability in Microsoft’s Internet Information Server (IIS) version 6 and proof-of-concept (PoC) exploitation was found. The extended support for IIS 6 ended in July 2015, meaning systems could have been upgraded in the two years since then. However, “independent web server surveys suggest that IIS 6.0 still powers millions of public websites” on at least 300,000 public servers.

Since evidence of exploitation of this IIS 6 vulnerability was found over a year after the end of support, hackers are likely to use the PoC technique to take advantage of the flaw. Once hackers have gained access, they can navigate their way through the system to exploit various aspects. Hackers may compromise the IIS 6 server, extract intelligence and use that and its resources to compromise more systems and possibly escalate privileges. Furthermore, anything hosted by the IIS 6 server machine becomes at risk.

How To Manage End-Of-Life Risks
Protection should begin with the basics of risk management and technology planning. Companies should actively manage risks in regards to maintaining and securing obsolete technology versus the cost of upgrading the system. While vendors often give early notices of end-of-life milestones, these things should be considered early on.

When considering your risks, ask yourself these questions:

  • How many obsolete technology and devices are still in your network?
  • What do they do in terms of your business?
  • What systems do they communicate with?

Once you have the inventory, the next step is basic risk and cost analysis:

  • What’s the risk if they are ever compromised?
  • What’s the cost to update them and their applications?

It may be hard to decide whether to keep your old equipment or upgrade, especially for those with tight budgets. Sometimes the cost of maintaining obsolete technologies is about the same or more than replacing the system all together, which is why all aspects should be taken into consideration.

Upgrading
As mentioned, the change-of-platform planning should be discussed during the design process. If not, the end-of-life notice from the vendor should serve as a reminder to begin planning transitions for all systems, clients, servers, and other invisible back-end and interconnected systems that may be forgotten. And not only does IT staff need to be on top of these things, but everyone who would be affected by a system transition should be made aware of impending changes.

End-of-life tech issues are much more complex than they appear. Because the IT industry is so widely diverse, the products and tech often expire quickly. Because of this, conscious planning for this is crucial.
You should maintain inventory and thoroughly map the connected systems and their value to help any future upgrades.

Does your business have a change-of-platform plan should your technologies reach their end-of-life sooner than later? Share your ideas with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

Find a great selection of CCTV surveillance packages, security cameras, and more at SecurityCamExpert.com. Call 888-203-6294 to learn more about our products and services.

Recent Comments