Today in Security: Transforming Physical Security

Today in Security: Transforming Physical Security

Physical security is long overdue for a digital transformation, according to a recent  report by experts from Microsoft and Accenture.  

The global digital revolution has transformed the world, but it has inadvertently created new threats, the report authors wrote. Social media use, for example has unintentionally provided new ways to orchestrate attacks and breaches. This reality, combined with the escalation of catastrophic climate events, means that many security teams are facing more challenges than ever.

Combating these threats will require big data applications. Recent developments in artificial intelligence and signals processing will help, and security organizations must develop new capabilities.

"Failure to transform will increase the likelihood of becoming a target," wrote authors Michael Foynes, center of innovation global lead at Microsoft and ASIS International member, and Mercedes Fuller, managing director, Accenture Strategy. 

For the report, Microsoft and Accenture surveyed 200 senior physical security leaders across multiple industries on the topic of transformation.

"We found that although security leaders see the opportunity to enhance risk management with digital capabilities, the industry is at various levels of maturity, and at worst is a decade behind," the report explained.

The two leading challenges facing physical security operations today, according to survey respondents, were reactive threat management and intuition-led decisionmaking based on subjectivity. 

"These challenges—operating reactively and improving decision-making—make it difficult to be proactive. This puts your people, brand, and reputation at risk," the authors wrote.

Microsoft Global Security has several initiatives underway to digitally transform its physical security. Under the code name Project Falcon, the initiatives are aimed at creating an intelligent platform that leverages data and insights to reimagine the employee experience and the delivery of security services.

The company expects the initiatives to result in cost savings over the next 10 years, according to the report. IT also expects digital transformation to strengthen its global risk management, elevate employee and customer experiences, and unify groups within Microsoft. For more information, consult the Future of Physical Security report.