Government IntegrityGP0|#91bd5d60-260d-42ec-a815-5fd358f1796d;L0|#091bd5d60-260d-42ec-a815-5fd358f1796d|Cybersecurity;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a43444652018-02-01T05:00:00Z, Mark Tarallo<p>​This year is a midterm election year, with countless political races. All 435 seats of the U.S. House of Representatives are up for grabs, as well as 33 U.S. Senate races. On the state level, 36 gubernatorial elections will be held, and all but four of the 50 states will hold legislative elections.</p><p>But there's another type of race already happening: a race against time. Namely, will officials be able to secure U.S. election systems when voters cast their ballots in November?</p><p>In recent years, election security has emerged as a repeated concern in the United States. The issue vaulted to prominence after the highly contested presidential election of 2000, which led to unprecedented levels of attention regarding voting methods and machines. </p><p>In a 2006 congressional race in Sarasota County, Florida, more than 18,000 votes went uncounted due to electronic voting errors. </p><p>Later, a New York University study examined three types of voting machines that were used in the 2006 elections, finding significant security and reliability vulnerabilities. (For more background from Security Management, see "Will Your Vote Count," May 2008, and "Machine Politics," October 2012.)</p><p>This year's election features another big concern: potential interference from Russia. That country attempted to hack the 2016 presidential election, U.S. officials have said, and concerns persist about a repeat performance. </p><p>"There is no doubt that Russia interfered in our 2016 election, and targeted 21 states' voting systems," U.S. Representative Robert Brady (D-PA) said at a recent Capitol Hill hearing on election security. "And we can expect them to return." </p><p>Brady is cochair of the Congress­ional Task Force on Election Security, which was created last summer to identify solutions that will safeguard elections going forward. The other cochair is U.S. Representative Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), ranking member of the U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security.</p><p>Brady's comment that voting mach­ines in 21 states were hacked has been confirmed publicly, but authorities have been unwilling to name the states affected. </p><p>However, according to Thomas Hicks, commissioner and vice chair of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC), the hackers originally approached machines in all 50 states. But some were more locked down than others, so the other 29 states were not hacked. (The EAC is an independent, bipartisan commission charged with developing guidance and adopting voluntary voting system guidelines.)</p><p>"Make no mistake, it's all 50 states that were scanned. And it was just a little bit of—by the foreign actors or whomever—jiggling the handles and trying to get in. But some of those states were prepared enough that hackers weren't able to get in," Hicks said at the hearing. "So, as we prepare for the 2018 election cycle, we want to make sure that, from voter registration lists, to voting machines, to securing the voting equipment after the election, to election night reporting—from A to Z, all those aspects are taken care of." </p><p>To help in the election security effort, EAC representatives have been flying out on a weekly basis to meet with state-level election representatives to advise on security protocols and systemic issues, Hicks said. The EAC has also been working with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to help get information on election security to state and local officials. </p><p>"I think there's a lot more that needs to be done, because I believe that not only are there foreign actors that are looking to mess with our elections, but also folks within our own country who are looking to meddle in our election process," Hicks said.</p><p>Besides the threat of bad actors, U.S. election security faces another risk—aging and outdated equipment. After the disputed 2000 election, Congress passed the Help America Vote Act in 2002, which brought about an equipment update in many states. But some of those machines now need replacing. </p><p>"The equipment that was purchased 15 years ago has come to the end of its life cycle," Hicks said. </p><p>And even some of the older mach­ines that are still in decent operating shape were not designed to withstand the type of cyberattacks and tampering methods that are possible today. "With the older equipment out there, security, if it was thought about at all, was really an afterthought," said Virginia Elections Commissioner Edgardo Cortés at the hearing. </p><p>Voting machine modernization and better voting security is possible, but it takes significant investment, according to Rhode Island Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea. </p><p>At the hearing, she offered her own state as an example, saying that when she took office in 2015 "our voting equipment was on the brink of total failure." </p><p>So, the state invested $10 million in an upgrade, featuring paper ballot optical scanning machines with four layers of security and encryption. </p><p>Besides the equipment upgrade, there was the "second challenge" of building capacity in the public sector to manage election cybersecurity issues, Gorbea explained. It took a 40 percent increase in staff to do this, she added. </p><p>One of the lessons learned from this process, Gorbea said, was that better communication is needed between DHS and state officials regarding topics like threat information sharing. And more officials need to understand that effective cybersecurity does not mean arriving at a specific "destination," but is rather a continuous process of assessment and improvement. </p><p>"Cybersecurity is at the forefront of election conversations at every level of government across the country," she said.  </p><p>Given this, Gorbea said she would "absolutely" be in favor of federally mandated baseline cybersecurity requirements for new voting equipment, especially given the precedent of the Russian hacking in 2016. </p><p>"These attacks are real, and are focused on undermining our representative democracy," she said.</p><p>Besides replacing old voting machines and beefing up cyber defenses, states and localities can take other measures to help ensure that the upcoming midterms are secure, according to a recent report, Nine Solutions to Secure America's Elections, issued by the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank. </p><p>In the report, Liz Kennedy, director of democracy and government reform at the center, and Danielle Root, voting rights manager for democracy and government report, set out nine tasks to improve election security. </p><p>Although a few, like replace old voting machines, are similar to the measures discussed at the Capitol Hill hearing, others touch on points not raised, such as requiring voter-verified paper ballots or records for every vote cast; conducting robust postelection audits to confirm election outcomes; updating and securing outdated voter registration systems; performing mandatory pre-election testing on all voting machines, as well as continuous vulnerability analysis; and providing federal funding for updating election infrastructure.</p><p>"As it currently exists, America's election infrastructure is dangerously insecure and susceptible to hacking, machine malfunctioning, and Election Day disruption," the authors write. "…It is critical that we begin building our defenses to protect against election intrusions before it is too late." </p><p>Meanwhile, the Defending Digital Democracy program has issued a handbook offering guidance on how political campaigns can help make elections more secure. Written by a wide-range of security experts, including the CSOs of Facebook and Aetna, the Cybersecurity Campaign Playbook offers best-practice guidance on topics like using cloud services, two-factor authentication, and strong passwords.  </p><p>The Defending Digital Democracy program is run by the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School. The program was established last year, and its leadership includes top campaign officials from both the Republican and Democratic parties.</p><p>"Cyber adversaries don't discriminate. Campaigns at all levels—not just presidential campaigns—have been hacked. You should assume that you are a target," the playbook says.  ​</p>

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 You May Also Like... Performance Trends<p>​</p><div>On December 24, 2003, a woman broke into an exhibit case in Kentucky’s Owensboro Medical Health System and stole a case of 50 antique glass eyes. The theft was an unwelcome Christmas present that could’ve been a black eye for the hospital, but fortunately, the security team had the right detection measures in place. The woman, who had the unlikely but appropriate name of Wink, was recorded stealing the goods by the hospital’s CCTV cameras and was quickly caught.</div><div><br> </div><div>Apprehensions are one mark of the security department’s effectiveness. But the security department at the Owensboro Medical Center—which has some 447 beds and which handled more than 60,000 emergency-room visits last year—wanted a more comprehensive way to measure its performance on a day-to-day basis. It chose as its metric average hours per incident.</div><div><br> </div><div>Selecting an indictor. In developing a system for looking at how well security resources are deployed and how effective they are, the first challenge was identifying what exactly should be monitored. While security incidents are easy to count, we wanted to go beyond whether incidents were trending up or down. We also wanted to go beyond simply looking at whether costs per square feet were up or down.</div><div><br> </div><div>The goal was to select and define an indicator that could be used to measure the level of security and the effectiveness of preventive activities. The indicator chosen was time per incident.</div><div><br> </div><div>The first step was to quantify the time devoted to each reported incident as a way to establish a baseline for security coverage. As the security supervisor, I planned to correlate each new measurement against this baseline as a workable measure of security performance.</div><div><br> </div><div>Measurement components. There are two components of the performance measurement. First is the hours devoted to security. This factor only includes regular and overtime hours that the security staff is actually working—it doesn’t include any other hours, such as vacation or sick time.</div><div><br> </div><div>Second are the incidents and activities themselves. In a healthcare setting, incidents might include disturbances caused by visitors or patients, medical detentions, or safety-related occurrences such as fire drills. A comprehensive risk assessment will help define the types of incidents a facility will need to track.</div><div><br> </div><div>Activities may encompass routine duties that security staff carry out, such as patrolling the grounds, escorting visitors, or bringing articles to or from the safe. All of these specific incident responses and routine activities are collectively called incidents for simplicity sake throughout this article.</div><div><br> </div><div>To determine a measure of performance, the total number of security hours was correlated to the number of incidents to provide a ratio of hours to the total number of tasks completed. This is not a measure of the amount of time devoted to each security assignment—which can range from a few minutes for a safe run to a full shift for an officer sitting with a detained patient—rather, it is a global statistical ratio of total hours worked to total security actions handled.</div><div><br> </div><div>Graphing results. By graphing this relationship of total hours to total incidents each month, we developed a curve that represented a level of performance for the facility. While I can't go into the specifics from my own organization for confidentiality reasons, the point is illustrated with two years of hypothetical numbers. </div><div><br> </div><div>Year 1 (see chart) shows typical statistics for a facility with a security staff of about 10 full-time officers with a representative number of incidents recorded each month during the year. You can see that towards the end of the year there is an alarming downward trend in the curve; that is, there were fewer hours spent on each incident. </div><div><br> </div><div>There were several possible explanations for this. For example, the fictional organization might have been expanding, such as by adding a new medical office building. As a result, officers would have had more areas to patrol.</div><div><br> </div><div>Perhaps the hours of outpatient services were extended as well, meaning that there were more people in the building than in earlier months. Since the number of security officers remained the same despite the larger facility and the extended hours, there would have been more incidents to respond to within the same time frame, thus causing the downward trend.</div><div><br> </div><div>Benchmark. At Owensboro, we chose a baseline of 12 hours per incident. Because the system was still under development, this number was chosen provisionally after reviewing the existing data. It served as a benchmark against which future data could be analyzed.</div><div><br> </div><div>If this number proved to be off the mark as a reasonable baseline, we could adjust it later. But as long as it was the baseline, the goal would be to track trends against this number, and where the results rose or fell, to find out why and to take steps to reallocate resources so that the average hours per incident would stay in the range of 12.</div><div><br> </div><div>If the number of hours per incident rose, that might indicate that we had a reduction in the number of incidents. Alternatively, it might simply be because more hours were available thanks to overtime or fewer sick days. We analyzed the data each month to determine the underlying cause of the shift and to put the findings into proper context for our own use and for management.</div><div><br> </div><div>When hours per incident are up, the security department can reallocate resources to improve overall performance. For example, security officers could be directed to devote more time to making rounds, thus providing a more visible presence to deter crime. Additionally, they could be more available to defuse potentially volatile situations before they could escalate, and to work closely with the public, patients, families, and visitors to increase customer satisfaction by attending to their needs, such as escorting visitors or staff to parking areas.</div><div><br> </div><div>Conversely, if security hours decrease or incidents increase, the number of hours per incident will decline, as happens in the example chart. By examining the underlying data about incidents and staff time, the security department can assess the cause and take corrective action or use the numbers to justify a request for more staff.</div><div><br> </div><div>In our case, we were expanding the facility, and our analysis showed that the addition of one-half full-time employee (FTE) to patrol the added space would bring our hours per incident back into compliance. This calculation showed a whole FTE was not necessary, particularly when an adjustment in fixed factors was made, such as a revision of lockdown procedures and the installation of new cameras and signage in the new medical office building. Not having to hire a full FTE would save the department money, but because the metrics showed that we were maintaining our benchmark goal, we knew that we were not sacrificing the level of security in the process.</div><div><br> </div><div>It’s interesting to note that if we had used the more traditional indicators such as hours per square foot, we could have argued that the facility needed a whole FTE as opposed to one-half FTE. By using the performance measurement formula, and making improvements in fixed security factors, our goal was obtainable while still keeping within budget constraints.</div><div><br> </div><div>The increase in security coverage raised the curve back to the desired security level even though there were actually more incidents reported in some months. The Year 2 graph shows how implementing this type of improvement plan could affect the numbers.</div><div><br> </div><div>Working with this model over the past couple of years has helped us to establish the appropriate staffing levels for the area we presently cover. As we expand our medical office areas and build a new cancer treatment center, we will continually reevaluate our staffing requirements.</div><div><br> </div><div>PDCA. Creating a system to benchmark security performance was an important element, but it was only part of our overall solution. Our facility uses the Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) cycle for performance improvement to comply with Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations’ performance standards. Our PDCA performance improvement model was developed as follows.</div><div><br> </div><div>Plan. Our plan was to monitor the level of our security by trending the number of hours as a function of total security responses to determine a level of security performance, with a goal of maintaining an average of 12 hours per incident.</div><div><br> </div><div>Do. Officers fill out a security incident report for each security incident. This report describes the security incident, the actions taken by officers, and the results of that action. This security log is put in a box in the security office, and subsequent security shifts review it to see what’s going on in the facility.</div><div><br> </div><div>We expanded our camera system and redirected several cameras. We enhanced security by securing access to the building after hours, and we are reviewing our lockdown procedures as they apply to both staff and visitors. We are currently upgrading our badge-access entry points to the building to limit access to the building during off hours.</div><div><br> </div><div>We created a dedicated security office near the ER from which to centralize security operations. And a security officer now makes a proactive effort to reduce security incidents by making a presentation at new employee orientation about parking and personal security habits.</div><div><br> </div><div>Check. We checked our progress by using the security incident reports as source documents for reporting all incident statistics to the Environment of Care committee each month and at year-end. This information is graphed along with hourly payroll statistics to allow us to see our progress.</div><div><br> </div><div>Act. We acted on the results by changing coverage and modifying protocols as required to meet these issues. We adjusted our staffing levels to accommodate our new service offerings and expanded facilities.</div><div><br> </div><div>The final piece consisted of reporting our performance to the Environment of Care Committee and including the performance results in the annual security evaluation submitted to the hospital’s governing body each year.</div><div><br> </div><div>What’s ahead. Despite the benchmarking tool’s effectiveness so far, it’s still in its formative stages. One thing that has become clear is that not all incidents are the same, so there needs to be a way to weigh each one and to add those weighted values to the mix. This is an effort I am working on presently.</div><div><br> </div><div>For now the tool allows us to benchmark our security performance, and it gives us a way of communicating to management what level of security is being provided. It also provides a basis for funding requests in an era of increased competition for available resources.</div><div><br> </div><div>The net outcome is that we now have a much better confidence level in our security coverage because we have a simple method of visually presenting our level of security that management and security staff can identify with, and one that helps justify requests for security enhancements when new security challenges arise. </div><div><br> </div><div>Stephen Wall supervises security and communications at Owensboro Medical Health System in Owensboro, Kentucky, which services western Kentucky and southern Indiana. He has nine years of experience in coordinating environment-of-care issues for their facility.</div><div> </div>GP0|#28ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997;L0|#028ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997|Strategic Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a4344465 Review: Insider Threat<p><em>Insider Threat: Prevention, Detection, Mitigation, and Deterrence. </em>​ Butterworth-Heinemann;; 252 pages; $49.95.​<br></p><p>​Organizations face an increasing number of risks in today's uncertain and complex world. Security has become even more challenging with the digital transformation of the business environment. These challenges are not limited to external threats, so it is equally important to manage and mitigate threats within the organization.</p><p><em>Insider Threat: Prevention, Detection, Mitigation, and Deterrence </em>aims to provide a people-centric and technology-enabled approach for creating a program to identify and mitigate the risk of insider threats. Author Michael G. Gelles sets the stage with a clear conceptualization of the insider threat, the motivations underlying the behavior, the challenges for maturing a program, and the changing nature of the phenomenon over time. </p><p>Each of the 15 chapters, with contributions by various specialists, provides insights and strategies on key segments for building a holistic and risk-based program. Topical contributions relate to data analytics, information security, cyber and supply chain risks, just to name a few. The reader will find information on risk tolerance as well as the use of potential risk indicators. In addition, attention is given to governance, ownership, and stakeholder management.</p><p>Overall, the book is well structured and well written. The visuals throughout the book and key takeaways at the end of each chapter are practical and insightful. The manuscript taps into developments in regulatory requirements, offers advice for developing resilience against insider threats; and builds upon the wide experience, practices, and solutions of multiple well-qualified contributors.</p><p><em>Insider Threat</em> is of great value to the professional who manages or aspires to manage the prevention, detection, response, and deterrence of insider threats.</p><p><em><strong>Reviewer: Rachid Kerkab</strong> has almost two decades of experience in criminology, security, risk, and resilience. He is a member of ASIS.</em></p>GP0|#cd529cb2-129a-4422-a2d3-73680b0014d8;L0|#0cd529cb2-129a-4422-a2d3-73680b0014d8|Physical Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a4344465 Needed To Better Manage Physical Security Risks To The National Mall<p>​Stakeholder actions are needed to better manage physical security risks to the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) found in a recent investigation.</p><p>The National Mall is a destination for more than 24 million people ever year and home to some of America’s most iconic symbols, including the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial, and major museums.</p><p>“Threats to these assets—whether acts of terrorism, violence, or vandalism or theft of artifacts or art—could result not only in the loss of life but also the loss of iconic monuments or irreplaceable items from the Smithsonian’s or National Gallery’s collections,” GAO explained.<br></p><p>In a<a href="" target="_blank"> public version of a classified report</a> released this week, GAO found that federal entities on the Mall are assessing the physical security risks to their respective assets—demonstrating that they are taking a risk management approach to security. <br></p><p>The U.S. Department of Interior, the Smithsonian Institution, and the National Gallery of Art collect information on aspects of their physical security programs’ performance and use that information to create goals, measures, and tests to assess the performance of their systems. <br></p><p>GAO, however, found that each stakeholder would benefit from taking additional steps to manage their physical security risks. <br></p><p>For instance, the National Gallery is assessing security risks to its galleries by voluntarily following the <em>Risk Management Process for Federal Facilities: An Interagency Security Committee Standard (RMP),</em> but does not have complete documentation of its risk management decisions—a requirement of the <em>RMP.</em><br></p><p>“Without documentation, decision makers may not effectively understand the rationale behind decisions—or, in the case of risk management—make important security-related decisions and direct resources to address unmitigated risks,” the report said.<br></p><p>During GAO’s audit of the National Gallery, officials told GAO investigators that a lack of complete documentation limited their institutional knowledge of the National Gallery’s risk management decisions related to physical security. <br></p><p>“Because of a lack of documentation, [GAO] received inconsistent or incomplete information throughout that review,” according to the report. “While National Gallery officials agreed to address the concerns we raised to them, we believe there is an opportunity for the National Gallery to address gaps in its institutional knowledge and help ensure more informed decision-making—specifically, by developing a process to document its risk management decisions.”<br></p><p>GAO also found that U.S. Park Police, the Smithsonian, and the National Gallery can all take a “more strategic approach to performance measurement,” the report explained. <br></p><p>For example, GAO recommended each stakeholder develop goals where needed and link performance measures to those goals to assess the effectiveness of their security programs. <br></p><p>“Linking performance measures and goals could help these entities monitor and evaluate their efforts, which is an essential part of risk management,” GAO said. “The information the entities can gain from performance measures that are aligned with goals could also provide these entities with a clearer view of the effectiveness of their physical security programs and better position them to prioritize security needs.”<br></p><p>The Department of Interior, the Smithsonian, and the National Gallery agreed with GAO’s recommendations and said they will begin to take steps to address them.<br></p><p><br></p>GP0|#cd529cb2-129a-4422-a2d3-73680b0014d8;L0|#0cd529cb2-129a-4422-a2d3-73680b0014d8|Physical Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a4344465