Early in the project, one must learn the participants and their agendas. Then, it is important to talk to the person, asking the questions that speak to his or her professional agenda, his or her employers' agenda, and in a muted way to his or her personal agenda. This must be done while speaking in a broad way to the audience at large and, most important, it must be done in the context of advancing the security project scope on schedule and within budget. Security design most of all is a process.
Electronic security systems are only one of many tools in the process. Important though they are, they are also most often depended on to deliver results beyond their ability, and most often they are not coupled with the other countermeasures that can make them the effective tool they can be. The most important element of a world-class security system is to design it in its proper context so that it can deliver the best results. When a security system is properly designed and applied as part of a comprehensive security program, it can properly serve its client.
I am fascinated that so many organizations that pay so much attention to best business practices, are diligent in their accounting, and manage their productive assets efficiently in the context of producing revenues or fulfilling the organization's mission nonetheless give very little regard to the same level of professionalism in their security organization.
Security is not a commodity. It is a value. Much like accounting, it shares two attributes in support of the organization's mission. Security and accounting both serve to support the organization's ability to comply with codes and regulations, and they both minimize losses in the organization. However, accounting departments are historicallymuch better equipped to account for their successes. Security, like any other business program, should be built on a sound and documentable financial basis.
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There should be a good foundational reason for any security countermeasure, and that reason should be founded in security policy. If a contractor, consultant, or owner cannot point to a specific security policy as a reason for a specific countermeasure, then either there is not a good reason for the countermeasure or there is a flaw or gap in the policy. This is one of the most important principles of good security system design, and I cannot emphasize it enough. Countermeasures without policy give skillful litigation attorneys room to criticize the lack of uniform application of security policy, which is a major focus of security litigation.
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Security design consultants with a distinct methodology.
Designs that are created without a basis in a comprehensive security policy will leave vulnerabilities in the protection of the organization and its assets. These are vulnerability holes in the security program that are created by the system designer's lack of awareness of some critical asset needing protection, some unanalyzed threat, or some vulnerability that is unknown without a comprehensive security risk assessment, security master plan, and security policies and procedures.
If you are asked to design a security system without these prerequisites, you should first recommend these steps. If you are still asked to proceed, be sure to indicate in your contract that the system may not provide adequate protection against any unknown vulnerabilities. New construction projects are typically driven by the architect, and all consulting disciplines follow the architect's lead with regard to design standards, project management, and schedule.
New construction projects typically are predictable. There is clear direction on what disciplines need coordination and each person in those trades understands that coordination is part of the effort. All are working under one leader toward a common goal -- a successful project on a specific completion date. The architect will closely guard access to the owner, so all direction comes from the architect alone unless he or she arranges a meeting with the owner for input and review. Renovation projects vary in size and scope. Generally, the security system upgrade is part of a larger upgrade effort, and in many ways these projects are similar to new construction projects, except that there are usually fewer trades and the construction cycle is not as long.
Again, the architect will take the lead on the project, unless the owner has designated a specific project manager to represent his or her interests.
Government projects are often regulation driven. They may also be driven by new construction or renovation requirements, but the common thread is that there will be an agency or multiple agencies involved whose specific security needs are defined in an international, federal, state, or local regulation to which they must comply. The government entity will usually have a set of standards for the system specification; for how the system is designed, approved, and built; and for how it operates.
The designer must follow these guidelines or regulations exactly; his or her success will be judged by someone whose job it is to find fault with every system. If there is any fault, it will be found, so it pays to get it right the first time. There should be no shortcuts, no adaptations to personal preference, and no designing the system to suit one's own point of view.
No point of view matters except that of the reviewer who will be judging the outcome against the code or regulation. Know your codes. Even when the project is privately owned, codes and regulations may rule. For example, the security for any seaport, airport, or river terminal is guided by a set of specific codes, regulations, and rules. In many cases, the project may have to respond to multiple standards from multiple agencies. The very acceptance of the project by public agencies may hinge on how well the security designer understands these rules.
It is not uncommon, for example, for liquefied natural gas LNG projects to rest entirely on the fulfillment of security regulations. The owner may risk hundreds of millions or even a billion dollars on the quality of the security consulting effort. It is very dangerous indeed for security designers who are unfamiliar with the regulations to attempt to design facility security for such a project.
This can be a path to bankruptcy for both the designer and the owner who hired him or her. In one case, the owner of a functioning and prestigious high-rise commercial building in San Francisco faced a forced closure of his building by the fire department because the building manager had hired a security contractor to equip all stair tower doors with electric locks.
The security contractor won the contract because his price was by far the lowest. However, the building manager did not know that what made the price so low, the use of electric strikes instead of approved stair tower door locks, also put the building out of compliance with building fire codes. The installation of strikes corrupted the fire-rated door frames, voiding their fire rating, and ultimately the owner was required to replace all the affected stair tower doors and new frames with approved assemblies at a cost that was significantly higher than the highest of the original bids.
The owner was out a lot of money and the security contractor went bankrupt. This was an expensive way for both the owner and the security contractor to learn the fire code. Commercial projects are often a delight to work on. Unlike government projects, where regulations and process rules, a commercial enterprise is always interested in getting to the finish as fast as possible and with as little cost and process as necessary. The commercial entity is usually not interested in the best system but, rather, a system that is good enough.
In many commercial projects, the designer is working directly for the project owner, so lines of communication are short, and it is easier for the designer to understand the owner's needs and accommodate them efficiently. That personal relationship can also make the project more personally rewarding because the owner often expresses his or her satisfaction directly to the designer after the project is complete. Major and minor renovations alike are often placed under the jurisdiction of the facilities department of an organization. Facilities managers have a set of project processes that they follow and that the designer must understand.
In these projects, the facilities manager will be the main point of contact, and the architect, consultants, and contractors will all work directly for the facilities manager. The facilities manager is often a contractor rather than an employee of the company he or she serves, so there is often not a direct path to the owner for decisions, and decisions are often driven more by cost than functions. In rare cases, the designer may have the opportunity to work directly for the user. These projects are generally smaller, and the user usually wants the project to cost as little as possible and be done to a high standard.
It is easy to understand the requirements because there is direct access to the user. Often, however, there can be severe time and budget constraints on the work. Another type of user-driven project is that in which the designer is called in to solve problems that were created by another design. This harnesses the physical design of areas where people live and congregate in order to discourage potential offenders from committing criminal acts.
The technologies that we design include, but are not limited to: — Video surveillance and long-range detection.
Integrated Security Systems Design
We design security central command centres for controlling and monitoring facilities and security systems in accordance with the globally recognized ISO standards. We work very closely with our blast analysis, structural and facades specialists to identify how to protect buildings from explosive attacks and minimize the impact of explosions should preventative measures fail. Our specialist services include disproportionate collapse and structural response to blast. By analysing blast waves and their interaction with the built environment, we are able to simulate the detonation of a device in a building or cityscape in order to determine its effect on structural elements such as columns, beams, slabs and glazing.
We can provide rapid assessments in response to changing situations — for example, if the threat level suddenly rises and there is a need to provide immediate protection — or full, detailed blast-structure interaction analysis, giving valuable input to the whole design team. The best option is always to integrate explosive blast requirements into a design as early as possible.
This will result in more economical, less intrusive solutions. However, WSP can also provide retrofit options if the threat scenario deems them to be necessary. Once the drawings and specifications are finalized, we continue to support the client through the tender and construction process. This includes supervision of security contractors and all security design elements to ensure that installation meets the design requirements. We are involved in tender review and integrator pre-qualification, material and product review and approval, shop-drawing and as-built review, conducting on-site compliance reviews and participating in final system testing and commissioning.
We can conduct third-party peer reviews, assisting the client as a technical specialist to ensure that designs are in accordance with project and authority requirements, or to supervise coordination of the project security strategy and masterplan. In addition to security technology systems design, we often provide full project management and leadership services, overseeing multidisciplinary design teams in the delivery of complex security-driven initiatives.
Such projects often include systems with electrical, mechanical, IT and architectural elements, which need to be coordinated to meet the overall security vision.
For any organization to survive in an emerging information security ecosystem, standard security measures are no longer sufficient. The changing business landscape now requires an information resilience strategy, enabling an organization to prevent, respond and recover from potential threats, and maximize the trustworthiness of its information. WSP has established its own approach to information resilience, supported by a relevant implementation framework. Enterprise resilience includes the development of incident response plans in line with governance, risk and compliance requirements. These are delivered through organizational training and the development of procedures, such as responsibility identification and escalation.
People typically associate cybersecurity threats with data theft or the manipulation of money, but a breach today could have far more tangible results. These will only be exacerbated as we approach hyper-connectivity. The big difference in the future is that there will be direct physical effects. Or it might disable the elevator system in a high-rise building or overload critical national infrastructure for electricity or water. When designing a system, security needs to be built in from the beginning and all of these systems need to be thought through carefully and managed holistically, with care and foresight, through a multidisciplinary approach.
At WSP, we develop strategies for smart technology and converged data networks which factor in security components to maximize functionality, monitoring and resilience. Accommodating up to 12, people, working for many different companies, 22 Bishopsgate, will become the tallest building in the City of London when it is completed. Yas Bay is a new waterfront destination development located on the southern part of Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. This new high-rise office tower is 32 storeys above-grade with three levels of underground parking. WSP was responsible for the vital building services infrastructure to support significant areas of this vast development, including the central plant.
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Integrated Security Design Services and Consultants
Advice on security staff job descriptions. Included strategy, risk assessment and risk management, architectural advice, job descriptions of security personnel, full integration of procedures and systems into two operational control rooms, CCTV, access control, vaults, security management system, IT security, high security door and gate control, radio, intercoms, fire, bullion vehicle, doors, windows and much more. Full documentation was produced by GHA; tender instructions, contract conditions based on FIDIC, specifications, trunking and conduit drawings, security and fire drawings.
Contract period: over 4 years Note: The design and integration of systems was acknowledged as very complex. This was essential to ensure simple, accurate and effective performance by guards, especially in high stress situations. It is GHA's policy to design systems primarily for effective and efficient operation by an agreed quality of guard or operator at critical times, not just to address the threat and technical requirements.
Design and specification of a large security management system and control room operations including fully networked and integrated access control, CCTV, intruder, perimeter intruder detection PIDS and communication systems.