- Published: November 24, 2021
- Updated: June 24, 2022
- Language: English
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Security is incredibly important part of business. As an extreme example, imagine a jewelry store where all the jewelry is laid out for people to touch, try on, and examine. In this environment, the level of security is extremely low, and thus, the likelihood of losing assets is incredibly high. Most businesses will not be so careless with their assets, but they may be more careless than they should be—the role of the security officer should not be discounted.
Businesses are constantly under threat of theft and burglary, but there are many other security threats that are looming today as well (Collins, 2013). Businesses are almost entirely computerized today, which is incredibly useful for the day-to-day tasks that the business does, but this also means that many businesses are at risk of cyber attacks and hacking (Collins, 2013). When a business is the victim of a cyber attack or a hack, profits almost always suffer because of a lack of customer belief in the security of a company (Collins, 2013).
The high threat levels in today’s society means that a security officer must be ready to meet any kind of security risk at any time. There are a number of new ways to infiltrate businesses being invented every day, and the security industry is in an arms race with those who want to break into businesses. Unfortunately, it is almost always easier to break into something than it is to protect it, which is why security officers are so important. They can help stop security breaches if they do happen, and they can keep those security breaches from happening again.
The Role Security Plays in Protecting Assets
Security has to ensure that the company is airtight. If the company has a brick and mortar store, then security is responsible for the physical safety of the assets within the store. This means that all kinds of security devices must be installed and monitored by the security officers responsible (Fay, 2010). Security is responsible for installing cameras and security systems on site, and monitoring these security systems all the time to ensure that nothing has happened to the store, or that no breach of the perimeter has occurred (Fay, 2010). In addition, security is responsible for maintaining the security of the physical brick and mortar location during the day and during business hours, ensuring that loss prevention protocols are followed (Fay, 2010).
However, in addition to these physical security protocols that need to be developed, there are also concerns about Internet security breaches that could easily occur in many companies due to security lapses in technology (Zhang et al., 2010). There have been many hacks on large companies in recent years, including companies like Target, Sony, and TJX—all companies that were supposed to have excellent information technology security (Collins, 2013). If security breaches can happen to these large companies, it can easily happen to smaller targets as well. It will not do for a security director to focus exclusively on the creation of a physically secure location without looking into the implications of developing a technologically secure environment. Protecting the business and hiring the appropriate type and number of information technology specialists is a fundamentally important task for the security department of an organization.
Role of the Security Director
The security director has a number of important functions that may change in scale and complexity based on the size of the organization that he or she is responsible for (Fay, 2010). These functions include loss prevention, investigation, and administrative or managerial functions. Loss prevention is something that is important in any business, due to the fact that businesses need to keep their stock from being stolen. However, there are important protocols associated with loss prevention, and the security director needs to make sure that all the security officers and personnel are properly educated on how to execute loss prevention protocol (Collins, 2013).
The next issue that commonly needs to be addressed is the issue of investigation. Most companies have an internal policy, designed by the security director, that lists the steps that the individual needs to go through if he or she has been accused of theft within the company (Fragnière, 2007). A lot of theft happens from within the company, so this is something that cannot be overlooked for the overall safety and well-being of the company or organization (Fragnière, 2007).
Finally, the security director needs to be able to control the administrative and managerial functions that are associated with security, including documentation and management of a team of security officers, whenever necessary (Fay, 2010). The security director must be an individual who is driven to succeed and well organized, because these are fundamental skills for both leadership and risk management within the organization (Fragnière, 2007). In addition, the importance of internal and external relationships for the security department’s mission cannot be overstated. Security directors need to be able to trust the individuals within their department, but they also need to be able to deal with the people who are important to the function of security outside of the department, as well. For instance, when personnel need to change their passwords for the company computers for security reasons, the director of security needs to have good enough relationships with other members of the company to ensure that these basic security protocols are both understood and adhered to by company personnel (Collins, 2013).
There are many important functions to the security department, regardless of the type of company or organization. Companies with brick and mortar stores may have a lot to lose physically, but companies that run on data have just as much to lose in a very different way—all that customer data could be lost, and there could be serious consequences if the company is sued and it is found that the company was not doing enough to protect the customer’s data. Security is incredibly important within all organizations, and lapses in security can be incredibly costly for businesses of all types.
The people that make up the security department must be very aware that the threat level for businesses is always changing, and there are always new things that have to be noticed and fixed before they become problems. When security departments cut corners, problems occur; the best security departments are those that recognize threats before they occur and help the company close security loopholes before they become problematic for the security of the company’s assets. Developing security is an evolutionary process, and it continues for the life of the company.
Collins, A. (2013). Contemporary security studies. Oxford university press.
Fay, J. (2010). Contemporary security management. Elsevier.
Fragnière, E., & Sullivan, G. (2007). Risk management: safeguarding company assets. George Sullivan.
Zhang, X., Wuwong, N., Li, H., & Zhang, X. (2010, June). Information security risk management framework for the cloud computing environments. InComputer and Information Technology (CIT), 2010 IEEE 10th International Conference on (pp. 1328-1334). IEEE.