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360 View of the U.S. Security Market

Recently the American Society for Industrial Security (ASIS) International and the Institute of Finance and Management (IOFM) published The United States Security Industry,the first definitive study of the security market since the Hillcrest Report II in 1990. Having digested the report from the perspective a perimeter physical security provider, some interesting points shine through:

1. Market Size
The total market for security goods and services is estimated at greater than $350 billion, with the us_sec_mkt_350B_breakoutprivate sector spending at 281.61 billion; federal government 68.9 billion. Which means private sector spending is four times more than the federal government.

2. Security Directors Face Significant Challenges

Despite growth, security directors face significant challenges in obtaining necessary funding. That problem is compounded by the fact there are significant downsides in the event of security failure, while only modest upside in the event of success. In order to obtain necessary funding it’s important to:

  • Establish unprecedented awareness of goals. No security system is going to be successful without a clear understanding of what is needed.
  • Reduce pressure by using vendors familiar with your industry.
  • Correctly and comprehensively identify lifetime costs.
  • Rely on proven technologies. A strategy based on a flawed perception of device capabilities is vulnerable.
  • Raise awareness of additional ROI: a safer work environment can reduce employee turnover, avoiding interruption in the supply chain can lead to greater customer retention etc.
3. The Perimeter Protection Market Should See Strong Growth in the Future.

Deter, detect, delay and respond are accepted principles of asset protection that require layers of security. Perimeter protection is a vital first layer of security. False alarms by smart video systems may harm the ability of the Security Director to realize ROI.

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4. How to Get Maximum Value Out of the Security Investment:
  • People who work with the system daily must be trained, retrained, and supported for proper use of the system.
  • Frequent testing is required to ensure operational effectiveness.
  • The full cost must be taken into account, not just acquisition. Cost of training, retraining, maintenance, and replacement must be considered.
  • Employee screening is necessary. Employment attorney Lester Rosen said, "If you could have known you should've known." 

5. Security partnerships between private security and law enforcement, while critical, have traditionally proven difficult.

  • Despite difficulties, partnerships will persist as the private sector controls 85% of the nation's critical infrastructure.
  • An example of success is the Supply Chain Information Security Analysis Center (SC-ISAC)& security councils established in the transportation market.
  • Success has been documented by JJ Coughlin in his book, "Cargo Crime."
  • A similar initiative has been launched within the metal recycling business. Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. (ISRI) has started a Law Enforcement Outreach, led by Brady Mills.

6.  Clear correlation between property risk management & financial performance.

Firms that invest in protecting their property tend to create value for the firm. Those that don't manage property risk return less to shareholders and owners.

Conclusions

In terms of the business community’s relationship with law enforcement, crime has a significant impact. As damaging as property crimes can be, 94% of law enforcement executives believe companies should expect more cuts in community policing and the elimination of mobile response for minor calls, such as alarms.

In terms of what companies can do to better protect their physical property, the primary message is clear: do not be swayed purely by the latest technologies. Finding a reasonable solution at a reasonable cost with a vetted security company familiar with your industry is a more effective strategy. Part of the vetting process should be a review of maintenance and training programs, just as you would scrutinize the maintenance and training on any Information Security Technology you purchased.

In terms of Electric Guard Dog, we were pleased to find ourselves amongst the exclusive few in the physical security market that already include maintenance and training at no additional cost to customers as well as the market leader in all our vertical markets.  If your business includes valuable property that is stored outside, consider contacting us for a free site security evaluation.

Topics: Customer Care, Security Industry, Department of Homeland Security, CFATS, Chemical Distribution, Scrap Recycling