Resilience,-Accept-the-Unexpected.aspxAccept the UnexpectedGP0|#28ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997;L0|#028ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997|Strategic Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a43444652019-08-01T04:00:00ZBrendan Monahan<p>​It is one thing to expect the unexpected. It is quite another to accept the unexpected. Denial is a powerful thing, and even the best of us can be convinced that our plans are comprehensive and our preparedness complete. </p><p>The key ways to overcome this sort of complacency are to link crisis management and business continuity meaningfully, and to incorporate Adaptive Business Continuity principles that enable an organization to react quickly to the unexpected.</p><p>Consider that the past few years alone have seen increasingly active Atlantic hurricane seasons, major cyberattacks against global corporations, and secondary losses of key infrastructure following major disasters. Organizations in the public and private sectors are asking their teams to do more with less while also performing to higher standards. The need to recover quickly from losses is as important as ever, while in many cases the resources are thinner than they used to be. These realities require new and innovative approaches.</p><p>In addition, as our society grows increasingly interconnected, businesses, organizations, and governments will depend upon one another’s services to tighter and tighter tolerances. Utility and communications regulators, for example, are demanding that companies meet stricter reliability standards. This trend will continue for the foreseeable future.</p><p>Meanwhile, the costs and consequences of large-scale incidents will grow. Disaster events claimed more than 11,000 victims globally in 2018. The estimated losses from natural and manmade disasters in 2018 are estimated to be $155 billion, with global insured losses estimated to be around $79 billion, according to data from the Swiss Re Group. </p><p>These conditions paint a frightening picture, but therein lies the opportunity. A well-crafted business continuity program, clearly linked to crisis management activities, can be a source of value for an organization—not only in response to disaster, but on “blue sky days” too. The business continuity (BC) program and its practitioners can become meaningful business partners with the organization.</p><h4>A Tall Order?</h4><p>Great organizations confronted with crisis can choose to accept the unexpected, adopt a new normal, and bring out the best in themselves and their people. In doing so, they take a position of strength that recognizes crisis as a form of change and redefines it for a better future. </p><p>To do this, the organization needs to be poised in its response—not just when a crisis or business interruption occurs, but ahead of it. Done skillfully, a business continuity program can not only enable a better response, but also foster continuous improvement and identify areas of operational improvement along the way.</p><p>Security managers are in a key position to influence their organizations if they adopt practical notions in their BC approach. And, in some cases, it is the security manager who is tasked with creating a new BC program where none existed, or worse—with reviving one that has languished.</p><p>How does one proceed? By connecting BC to the delivery of continuous improvement and operational value and by linking crisis management and BC in a meaningful way.</p><p>To achieve the best outcome, business continuity depends on the planning and preparation effort that comes along with response and recovery. This is where the true blocking and tackling of BC work takes place. </p><p>Some industries and regulators are decidedly prescriptive about the required activities of BC programs under their purview. They mandate activities such as assessing risk, completing a business impact analysis, obtaining buy-in from senior leadership, training, validation, testing and exercising, documentation, and communication. This is especially true in the financial sector and in the healthcare industry.</p><p>Good Practice Guidelines from the Business Continuity Institute and the standard ISO 22301 are good starting points where such accredited certification is needed or preferred. However, such traditional practices are not the only route to a meaningful BC program. </p><h4>​Pitfalls of Tradition </h4><p>In some cases, the activities and approaches traditionally associated with continuity planning can pose an obstacle to implementing a program. While these may have their appropriate place within many BC contexts, they can also present challenges. </p><p>This is especially true in cases where an organization may have greater latitude in designing a new program or revising an existing one, or in organizations with a culture that favors iterative, agile processes over linear, sequential ones. In these cases, it may be preferable to place the primary focus on quickly delivering value.</p><p>For example, a core concept of much BC planning activity is the focus on recovery time objectives (RTOs). The use of RTOs is intended to help quantify recovery needs, prioritize response activity, and drive planning activity. </p><p>However, employing time as a target, instead of simply a restriction, can be problematic. In practice, many times RTOs and recovery point objectives (RPOs) are subjective or even arbitrary. They are best applied where truly static, precise, and predetermined time restrictions exist, such as regulatory time limits, violations, or specific matters of health and safety. Otherwise, the effort undertaken to arrive at and assure an RTO may not return value. In other words, if it is clear that failing to meet a six-hour time frame for service restoration will result in a regulatory fine of a specific dollar amount, the decision making process becomes quite straightforward because investment in meeting the RTO can be clearly weighed against the risk of penalties.</p><p>Another cornerstone of the BC world is the business impact analysis (BIA). While the BIA can be an invaluable tool for the BC practitioner, it can also be a subject fraught with confusion. </p><p>In actuality, the proper sequence of service restoration will always depend on the exact nature of the post-disaster situation. As such, responses need to be flexible and adaptive. This is especially true in today’s environment where the cause of a service outage might not be immediately obvious—as in the case of a deliberate cyberattack.</p><p>As a consequence of all this activity, an overwhelming amount of documentation can be generated which needs to be guarded, maintained, and updated. But rarely is it used in actual response activities. In some cases, BC and response plans are so voluminous that they could not possibly serve a practical purpose in a real emergency. They become the proverbial shelfware.</p><p>Lastly, traditional methods emphasize obtaining exclusive senior-level executive support and doing so at the outset. While important, it can be more meaningful to engage at many levels in the organization. </p><p>The real danger here is slipping into a trap where the organization is carrying out extensive business continuity activity for business continuity’s sake, which only delivers value on an arbitrary or periodic basis and could create a false sense of preparedness in departments where little actually exists. The goal, instead, should be to explicitly link to the organization’s objectives and to deliver value incrementally and continuously. </p><h4>A Practical Approach </h4><p>Consider some of the following practical approaches in connecting BC to the delivery of continuous improvement and operational value. These are notions borrowed directly from the approach called Adaptive Business Continuity. Five of Adaptive BC’s core principles, outlined here, are essential for better partnership between crisis management and business continuity. </p><p><strong>Exercise first.</strong> In the strictly sequential approach often favored by traditional BC practitioners, testing and exercising come during later stages of the cycle, after plans and assessments have been completed. </p><p>But discussion-based tabletop exercises are the single most powerful tool an organization can use to identify gaps in planning and address assumptions in both crisis management response and BC. Dollar-for-dollar, there is no better value. So why not start there? By walking through a scenario as a group, a team can quickly and easily spot gaps and identify solutions. </p><p>Such exercises can be lightweight and even informal. The key is to have a direct, focused approach driven by one or two clearly defined objectives. </p><p>For example, the objective of this exercise might be to assess the initial size up and response to an unplanned event; to evaluate the escalation protocol defined in the planning documents; or to review the organization’s ability to activate the crisis management plan.</p><p>By driving toward the objective, a planning team can steer away from overly complex exercise scenarios. Inevitably, the discussion will uncover lowhanging fruit of an operational nature; the exercise players will establish closer personal connections; and the collective team will identify gaps around the predetermined objectives. </p><p>Consequently, the results are both of immediate value and can be used to drive action planning over the medium and longer term. And, in doing so, the team has also established clear connections between BC and crisis management capabilities.</p><p><strong>Simplify documentation. </strong>Elaborate crisis management and BC plans that are hundreds of pages long are a detriment in three critical ways. First, they require extensive—often labor intensive—maintenance and continuous updates. Second, they are not practical in an actual crisis. Lastly, these are not value-generating activities. BC activity and documentation for its own sake is a common pitfall. </p><p>Simplify plans so they can be internalized and recalled easily by the people that need to know them. Where appropriate, checklists are an excellent tool.</p><p>The exceptions, of course, are cases where such plans are mandated or regulatory requirements, such as in the finance and healthcare industries. Absent any compliance or other compelling need, voluminous documentation should be replaced by slim, user-oriented playbooks. </p><p>A practical example of this is an organization with a 75-page corporate incident response policy. Key leaders in the organization had acknowledged that because of the policy's length, it was universally ignored—posing a critical risk. The solution was to reduce the most significant end user elements of the policy—what the responder truly needed to know first—into a one-page infographic. </p><p>The infographic was introduced to the working teams through a series of short, focused tabletop exercises. Teams were asked to use—and break—key aspects of processes contained in the infographic. </p><p>In the course of the exercises the teams also uncovered critical communications gaps and assumptions and were able to address them. They formulated the catchphrase “Don’t Hesitate to Escalate” to drive home their solution to the communications problem. In doing so, they delivered immediate value to the organization, improved operational efficiency, and established a basis for continuous improvement of their BC and crisis management capabilities. </p><p><strong>Continually improve.</strong> The most compelling case a BC professional can make to a client or constituent is that the cost and effort required of proposed BC-related activities will offer some immediate payoff, as well as continuous, iterative improvement throughout the process. </p><p>Free from documentation for its own sake and a strictly sequential BC cycle, the BC professional discovers the opportunity to take more of a role as a partner in the business. Where performance measures like RTOs are needed, along with taking an inventory of key business processes, discussion around these topics should not focus on an arbitrary target. </p><p>Rather, an opportunity exists to engage stakeholders about their goals for the organization and to rationalize the findings of their assessments—challenge them to apply their own intuition to the targets and see if they pass the test of common sense. And by asking why the target is there, call into question how it may be reached on a “blue sky day” more efficiently. </p><p>The BC process can be a source of continuous improvement by providing a venue for these conversations among stakeholders. People are eager to share personal experiences of working through crises—with outcomes that were positive or negative for the organization—especially in a setting where that experience can add value.</p><p>For example, one organization recognized that its list of key business processes was extensively detailed and complicated. A very candid, common sense discussion reduced this list from dozens of items to six, only one of which was considered critical. Consequently, the BC management process was simplified, and the crisis management response framework was easier to internalize.</p><p><strong>Plan for effects. </strong>The causes of catastrophe are innumerable. We cannot plan for every eventuality, and even if we could, our best laid plans often get overtaken by the events. Instead, we should focus on effects. </p><p>Generations of military leaders have understood that  “No plan survives first contact with the enemy.” The notion is familiar and often repeated in more contemporary contexts, but perhaps best by Mike Tyson: “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.”</p><p>Consider the extreme weather phenomena experienced by the U.S. Northeast in 2011 and 2012. In the fall of 2011, the area experienced a nor’easter and Hurricane Irene in rapid succession. The following fall in 2012, it experienced yet another nor’easter and Superstorm Sandy.</p><p>All four events can easily be described as storms, natural disasters, or extreme weather. The acute causes of the localized emergency were highly specific, however. Each storm had its own unique character: inland flooding, coastal flooding, a snow event, or a tree event. Some would argue that this calls for four unique types of plans—or that each cause needs a corresponding plan. </p><p>On the contrary, the effects of these catastrophes are much fewer. The effects will only be the unexpected unavailability of people (staff), places (facilities), or things (resources and critical suppliers). </p><p>Focusing on effects makes for much simpler, more meaningful and manageable planning. </p><p><strong>Know the business. </strong>Above all, the people responsible for carrying out any BC or crisis management activity need to know the business. BC practitioners should align closely with operational teams at every level of the organization—not just at the senior leadership level. Having executive support is beneficial to driving outcomes, but the discovery of ground truth comes from frontline teams. The best BC professionals don’t just drive an arbitrary BC cycle. They understand the people, places, and things that make the business unit tick—and why. </p><p>If we consider crisis management an unexpected opportunity to change, then BC should serve as the practical, sense-making corollary. In other words, the lessons learned in acute responses to crises can be sharpened into operational improvements and ultimately greater resilience when incorporated by the BC process.</p><p>The BC professional’s biggest client in any organization is operations. Delivering value during crisis means having close integration between business continuity, crisis management, and the real needs of the business.</p><p>If we accept that organizations will continue to be challenged in unexpected ways by the external environment—and that this will result in losses—we have to look at how our BC efforts match with the demands placed upon them. </p><p>The organization that is in a position of strength is one that has truthfully inventoried itself, assessed its own assumptions, and made use of what it learns along the way—not just in the moment of crisis or business interruption. </p><p>The path to this outcome can follow a traditional, prescriptive route as defined in the ISO and the Good Practice Guidelines—but it can also take more innovative and ongoing forms by linking BC and crisis management to the goals and orientation of the organization. A more practical, agile, and lean approach like the one outlined by Adaptive Business Continuity is likely to provide more value—and at a faster pace—than traditional practices we currently have in place.  </p><p><em>Brendan Monahan is the chair of the ASIS International Crisis Management and Business Continuity Council. He is an Associate director at Novartis, responsible for coordinating business continuity and for risk and crisis/emergency management in the U.S. country region.   </em></p>

Resilience,-Accept-the-Unexpected.aspx2019-08-01T04:00:00ZAccept the Unexpected Back Power to Puerto Rico Culture Influences Disaster Recovery Healthcare Security Professionals Learned from Hurricane Harvey and Security: Building Relationships For Effective Management 2019 SM Online Review: Disaster Science in the Open: The Security Challenges of New Office Spaces Joy Shock to the System With Yourself Online November 2018’s-Your-Plan.aspx2018-11-01T04:00:00ZBook Review: What’s Your Plan? Review: Disaster Recovery Review: Gun Violence,-Safer-Spaces.aspx2018-10-01T04:00:00ZSmarter Structures, Safer Spaces Seas Failure to Plan World of Risk Review: Adaptive Business Continuity

 You May Also Like... Failure to Plan<p></p><p>A rare meteorological event occurred in 2017 when three Category 4 hurricanes were simultaneously ongoing in the Pacific Ocean. At the same time, wildfires swept across the western United States in California, Montana, and North and South Dakota.<br></p><p>Harvard climate expert James McCarthy indicated that "economic losses from extreme weather-related events are rapidly escalating," in an article for The Universal Ecological Fund.</p><p>Supporting McCarthy's finding, Swiss Re said in a report to its shareholders that "total economic losses from natural catastrophes and man-made disasters amounted to USD $175 billion in 2016, almost twice the USD $94 billion seen in 2015."</p><p>Global insured losses from disasters also totaled $54 billion in 2016, up from $38 billion in 2015, according to Swiss Re, a leading reinsurance company.</p><p>Yet many organizations continue to struggle with their emergency and crisis management plans. This article includes some case studies that provide insights into common challenges during an emergency and recommendations on how organizations can respond and recover, quicker.​</p><h4>Lessons Learned</h4><p>Recently, one of the authors was conducting a threat, vulnerability, and risk assessment for a large corporation on the East Coast of the United States. While at the corporation, the author met with the company's business continuity and emergency management director.</p><p>When asked about the company's emergency management program and response, the director produced a four-inch binder with a cover titled Emergency Operation Plan (EOP). </p><p>The director said the plan was developed by a consultant, who assisted in creating the National Incident Management System (NIMS) and the Incident Command System (ICS) framework, an operational protocol hierarchy that integrates public, private, and government resources to address domestic incidents across all phases of an emergency.</p><p>The EOP defined the scope of preparedness and incident management activities necessary for the organization. It described its organizational structure, roles and responsibilities, policies, and protocols for providing emergency support.</p><p>The plan was robust and capable of handling any type of emergency. The robustness of the plan, however, provided unfounded trust in the efficacy of response and presented some cognitive biases that were apparent when interviewing others beyond the director.</p><p>For instance, everyone interviewed knew of the EOP, but no one knew their role or how to activate the plan should an emergency occur. They relied on the director to provide that direction. </p><p>When the plan was tested, one of the authors introduced a wildcard element by removing the director from the response process. This drastically increased the response time of the organization and taught a lesson that the plan did not account for: staff redundancy. </p><p>The organization needed a more granular version of its response so employees and key members of the crisis management team would know how to activate it should the director be unable to do so.</p><p><strong>Communication. </strong>On August 23, 2011, in New York City shortly after 1:00 p.m. the high-rise building one of the authors was in began to sway. There was no communication about what was happening from building or security personnel.</p><p> A woman yelled out "it's happening again!" in a reference to 9/11, and people began to run to the stairwells to evacuate the building.</p><p>With the evacuation in full swing, an announcement was made: "A vibration has been felt in the building. Please stay at your location. More information will be provided."</p><p>Most people, however, had already begun to evacuate. They were determined to get out of the building and disregarded the message. The author on site remained in the building until another announcement was made over the public-address system that a 5.8 earthquake had occurred in Virginia and everyone should evacuate the building.</p><p>The author evacuated the building, stepped outside, and began to look for a mustering point. But the streets were flooded with people, making emergency vehicle access impossible and presenting a dangerous situation with the thousands of pounds of glass from the building above.</p><p>This incident demonstrates that if there is not clear communication during an event, people will act—and will encourage others to do so—possibly putting themselves in an even more dangerous position.</p><p><strong>Leadership. </strong>One of the authors had the opportunity to tour a critical infrastructure situational awareness room recently. The large facility was tiered like a movie theater, supporting floor-to-ceiling monitors that were concave to allow sightlines from within the room.</p><p>During a review of emergency operations, the author was assured that the response program was sophisticated and included redundancies in staffing technology. </p><p>"Has the building ever lost power?" the author asked, after which the room went dark. Emergency lights activated and everyone in the room began to look to others to take charge of the response.</p><p>Once time had elapsed, people gathered their thoughts, regained their composure, and transferred the critical systems to an off-site backup. The incident showcased the lesson that there will be a lapse in response time while people reference their crisis manual to find out who's in charge—creating overall recovery delays.</p><p><strong>Changes.</strong> For every emergency plan the authors have tested, one of the key lessons is that an emergency action and crisis plan is a continual work in progress. As threats change, the plan must continue to adapt.</p><p>One example of this lesson in action occurred at a California hospital five years ago. The hospital decided to conduct an active shooter drill with the help of its patients. However, it announced that it was conducting the drill by issuing a "code silver" over the public-address system.</p><p>The emergency department staff began to respond, but patients and visitors were confused because they did not understand what a code silver meant. To include participation in the drill, the hospital needed to more clearly communicate what was happening so patients and visitors could effectively respond.​</p><h4>Effective Response</h4><p>Based on the lessons learned from the authors' experiences of testing emergency response plans, they recommend organizations conduct fidelity testing of their incident management planning and training. This will help organizations apply the right level of scrutiny to their plans and actions.</p><p>Applying fidelity testing to incident response training and execution can incorporate simple, but effective, gap analyses of critical program and process design qualities. This testing will help stakeholders understand their level of preparedness and response orchestration.</p><p><strong>Validity. </strong>Check the validity of the original incident management plan. A review is the first step because the plan sets the framework for incident management and articulates all actions before, during, and after an incident—including training. </p><p>The plan should be based on a proven model, such as NIMS, and incorporate actionable, strategic, and tactical direction for each designated participant.</p><p>The organization should also look for gaps and assumptions made in the plan. For example, a specific role in the plan may be assigned to a functional leader but lack substantive direction for execution. Or, the designated leader may not have the right level of composure to execute his or her tasks under pressure.</p><p>If the plan needs to be updated to address these issues, the organization should make those changes before carrying out the full fidelity test. This is because the test will only work if the plan is comprehensive and actionable in terms of preparation, execution, and training requirements.</p><p><strong>Vigilance. </strong>Check the current level of responders' vigilant behavior. A qualitative method for determining an organization's level of preparedness is to observe how quickly designated responders can switch their mental processes and physical actions from a state of normalcy to a state of active response.</p><p>A simple way to test this is through a surprise, scenario-based activation of each responder who is then timed from initiation to completion of the test. These tests should be conducted at least quarterly, and organizations should determine whether the desired outcomes were achieved based on the presented scenario.</p><p>In turn, this will help each responder retain information about the test results and make improvements in smaller, more manageable increments.</p><p>After re-testing, organizations should report on implemented improvements and their scale as part of established metrics, such as overall achievement of desired outcomes, reduction of time for task and process completion, and retention of information.</p><p><strong>Training. </strong>Organizations should assess their current training by assessing the design, frequency, and knowledge retention of that training. It's important to determine whether existing training is actionable and produces desired outcomes from each participant with a minimum number of assumption gaps. </p><p>Good training programs will include a blend of interactive and practical content designed to be emotionally compelling for participants; interactive and practical exercises with the element of surprise; well-researched, relevant, and comprehensive training scenarios; and strict time parameters for completion of individual and team tasks.</p><p>Additionally, training programs should have metrics tied to gaps between demonstrated execution and desired outcomes, such as time to complete tasks and processes, as well as quality of task completion relative to desired outcomes.</p><p>Along with these characteristics, training programs should also include immediate post-exercise documented feedback with follow-up actions, and continuous improvement demonstrated through metrics.</p><p><strong>Simplify. </strong>Each responder should have defined parameters of their responsibility during incidents. A well-designed fidelity test will identify these parameters—dubbed sandboxing—to assess how each responder executes the plan in relation to them. </p><p>To assist with this process, it's useful to create flowcharts of each responder's assigned process. This will help determine three findings: whether assigned tasks of each responder are simple enough to execute and connect well with processes of other responders; the abilities of each responder in executing certain tasks; and what skill gaps responders can close on their own with help from others.</p><p><strong>Recognition. </strong>Skill gaps are like assumptions. When unknown or ignored, they often serve as the root cause of incident management failures. This is why it's important to identify skill gaps as part of a fidelity testing exercise.</p><p>This exercise will make it easier to uncover skill gaps. It is difficult for individual incident responders to objectively identify skill gaps on their own because of inherent psychological biases, such as confirmation bias, overconfidence, or timidity.</p><p>According to multiple psychological studies, humans learn better from the mistakes of others or when their mistakes are noted by friends and colleagues.</p><p>Identifying and mitigating skill gaps helps the entire incident management program and demonstrates the organization's commitment to improvement and resilience. When expressed statistically, the mitigation of skill gaps can help demonstrate the overall program's value.</p><p><strong>Technology.</strong> Another benefit of well-designed and executed fidelity testing is the identification and mitigation of gaps in technologies used for incident management.</p><p>One of the most trivial—but often overlooked—issues is secure and interoperable radio communication. There have been numerous incidents, including 9/11, during which radio communication failed because of physical and electronic interference or other factors. Because radios were not interoperable, no one knew what others were doing.</p><p>In addition to radios, various other technological tools can be analyzed to understand their individual and collective benefits and shortcomings. It is always a good idea to demonstrate gap reductions or eliminations, both qualitatively and quantitatively, because this is most directly relatable to senior leadership.</p><p>Re-test. It is a natural process to re-test incident management programs. The key is to build habits for continual improvement because the main objective is to achieve optimal orchestration of human and technological performance during training and real incidents with minimal assumptions and skill gaps.</p><p>Real orchestration occurs when these components are present: a validated, justifiable, and actionable plan; scenario-driven, relevant, and frequently administered training that's timed and entails emotionally compelling interactive and practical content; continual program improvement; and meaningful metrics related to desired outcomes.</p><p>Incident management is best achieved through orchestration of individual components and responders and technology. Today, many organizations continue to struggle with achieving orchestration because of unaddressed skill gaps and assumptions in their planning. But this can be addressed and prevented in the future through fidelity testing. </p><p>"If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail," said Benjamin Franklin, and emergency and crisis management plans are no exception. </p><p>A well maintained and trained emergency management plan can provide significant dividends in recovery. Given the natural—and man-made—challenges ahead of us, emergency planning should be a staple in every organization.   </p><h4>​Sidebar: Reasons for Failure<br></h4><p>​There are many reasons that emergency response plans fail. Below are some examples of problem statements that can contribute to failure.</p><p><strong>It won't happen to me.</strong> People often fail to recognize that a crisis can happen to them, and organizations are no different. People and organizations tend to be concerned with large ever-changing threats, while forgetting more closely related operational issues.             </p><p>L<strong>oose plans without governance, leadership, or skills. </strong>Many emergency plans are check marks for organizational certifications or accreditations. They are handed down by the board or C-suite without a complete understanding of organizational resources and the total economic impact of creating a well-orchestrated and functional plan. ​When a formal security organization does not exist, the edict and direction of the plan will fall to an existing employee or department, who may hire a consultant or conduct an online search to cut and paste a plan that is not relevant or applicable to the organization.</p><p><strong>Too much information.</strong> Emergency plans are not simple. And for large organizations, they can be lengthy and create information overload that increases the time it takes to respond to an incident.</p><p><strong>Lack of training.</strong> Live action drills can be costly and create productivity challenges. Organizations have taken to Web-based learning, which exacerbates the problem because employees rush to get through the training, often retaining little of what they have learned. However, the organization obtains a mark for conveying the information and considers itself prepared.</p><p><br></p><p><em>Ilya Umanskiy, PSP, RAMCAP, MA, is founder and principal at Sphere State, Inc. Sean A. Ahrens, MA CPP, CSC, FSyl, is security market group leader for AEI/Affiliated Engineers, Inc., and specializes in threat assessment, crisis management, and security systems design. He can be reached at [email protected]</em></p>GP0|#28ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997;L0|#028ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997|Strategic Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a4344465 A Shift in Global Risk<p>​The quest to better understand the sources of global risk, and the effect those sources of risk may have on security, is of continuing importance to many practitioners of enterprise security risk management (ESRM). </p><p>And now, global risk has entered into a new era, with people around the world facing more political instability, more economic challenges, and the prospect that more national policy decision making will be driven by emotion rather than reason, a new study finds. </p><p>The study, The Global Risks Report 2017, is the 12th edition of one of the flagship reports issued annually by the World Economic Forum. The report postulates that the new era of risk began last year, a watershed time for instability when increasing economic populism and political polarization came to a head in unexpected election results and the disquieting rise of former fringe nationalist parties. </p><p>“The year 2016 saw profound shifts in the way we view global risks. Societal polarization, income inequality, and the inward orientation of countries are spilling over into real-world politics,” reads the study, which was conducted with the help of academic advisors from the University of Oxford, the National University of Singapore, and the Wharton Risk Management and Decision Processes Center at the University of Pennsylvania. </p><p>The report argues that five “gravity centers” will shape global risks moving forward, and it sketches out the challenges that will result from each of them.  First, continued slow economic growth, in tandem with high debt and demographic changes, will create an environment conducive to financial crises and growing inequality. Second, corruption and unequal distribution of the benefits of growth will convince a growing number of people that the current economic model is not working for them.</p><p>Third, the transition towards a more multipolar world order will put a greater strain on global cooperation. Fourth, the fourth industrial revolution—Internet-connected technologies—will continue to transform societies, their economies, and their ways of doing business. Fifth, more people will seek to reassert identities that have been blurred by globalization, so decision making and election choices will be increasingly influenced by emotions rather than reason.</p><p>There is no one silver bullet solution to these challenges. But the report argues that the problems “create the opportunity to address global risks and the trends that drive them.” In that spirit, the study sets out several actions that leaders should take to push forward in creating a more secure and stable world. </p><p>The report argues that political leaders need a deeper commitment to fostering inclusive development and equitable growth, on both a national and global scale, instead of allowing increasing economic inequality to further destabilize societies. And while the report praises innovation, it also argues for better management of technological change, so the growth of new uses for technology causes less disruption and leaves fewer behind. </p><p>Finally, at a time when multinational institutions like the European Union and NATO are under unprecedented attack, the report calls on leaders to redouble efforts to protect and strengthen systems of global collaboration. Destabilizing international events—which range from migration flows created by the Syrian war to major weather events that impact several countries to a potential global water crisis—all warrant more cooperation between countries.  </p><p>“It is ever clearer,” the report argues, “how important global cooperation is on the interconnections that shape the risk landscape.”</p>GP0|#28ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997;L0|#028ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997|Strategic Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a4344465 to Build a Culture of Security<p>​<span style="line-height:1.5em;">“</span><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Security is everyone’s business” may be a popular truism in the industry, but how many security managers can honestly say this philosophy is practiced by their companies? Some organizations have regular incidents in which employees simply disregard security rules and regulations. Sometimes, even the leaders of a company will disobey security and safety rules out of a sense of entitlement—these rules are for employees, not executives.</span></p><p>These lapses can be costly. It is only when everyone associated with the company adheres to and executes security rules and practices on a daily basis that a firm can credibly claim that it maintains a true culture of security.    </p><p>To determine whether a company encourages an effective security culture, company leaders should start by determining whether it adheres to the appropriate best practices. The security department should develop and communicate security rules, practices, and procedures to employees, contractors, visitors, and vendors. Executives must lead by example and follow all security practices and procedures. Employees must take care of their security responsibilities at work, such as locking their work spaces and computers or asking to see a badge of a person in a secure work area instead of simply holding open an outer perimeter door for a stranger to be polite.   </p><p>If an organization follows most of these procedures, it maintains a robust culture of security. If not, the best practice advice and solutions stated below can be used by security leaders to strengthen security awareness in their companies and develop a culture of security. ​</p><h4>The Assessment</h4><p>A culture of security can only be built on a solid foundation. And that foundation is an effective security program. </p><p>However, if the security program is perceived as inconsistent or unprofessional, an initiative to build a culture of security around it will be doomed from the start. Thus, it is imperative to conduct an initial assessment of the security program to evaluate past security practices and present security operations. </p><p>The assessment must include, but should not be limited to, the following methodology:</p><ul><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Conduct interviews with security staff to determine past practices and to engage them in the assessment process.</span><br></li><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Review and evaluate existing documents regarding past security missions.</span><br></li><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Review and evaluate security staff job descriptions.</span><br></li><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Review and evaluate security current procedures, processes, and guidelines. </span><br></li><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Review and evaluate the security budget to ensure that it is in line with the mission, and that funded programs are not obsolete.</span><br></li><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Spend time working directly with all security staff to obtain first-hand knowledge regarding daily duties. Get to know your people.</span><br></li><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Review and evaluate any compliance tasks that have been assigned to security.</span><br></li><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Review, evaluate, and coordinate security requirements with heads of departments with security cross-functionality. Conduct collaborative meetings with other department heads and staff on their opinions of security.</span><br></li><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Obtain input from executive management on its vision of security.</span><br></li><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Define and document your company-specific security missions.</span><br></li><li><span style="line-height:1.5em;">Review the security requirements within these missions and analyze them for potential mission creep.<br></span><span style="line-height:1.5em;"> </span></li></ul><h4>The Blueprint</h4><p>Once past and present security operations have been assessed, organization leaders can plan for the future by improving and refining, based upon the factual analysis that has already been completed.</p><p>The first part of the blueprint process is to develop missions and objectives. This includes enlisting management for direction and involvement and establishing security goals and engaging security team members in ways to accomplish them. This part of the process also includes documenting security mission statements and assigning a leader to each one. These leaders must be capable and willing.</p><p>The second part of the blueprint pro­cess is to standardize operations and document these procedures in a manual of operations. This manual will serve as a central repository of security standard operating procedures and processes that cover core duties and responsibilities throughout the company. </p><p>Once the assessment is completed and the blueprint is in place, security managers must ensure that key attributes of the program are successfully maintained. These attributes include consistent pro­fessionalism, first-rate training and com­munications, a commitment to the program from upper management, and procedures designed to address violations.​</p><h4>Professionalism</h4><p>Professionalism is a crucial component of a strong security culture. The professional security staff and security officers should be a model for the organization’s general population. High standards of conduct should be set; staff and officers should be evaluated; and problems should be weeded out. Most important, security department leaders should live those high standards to set an example for others to follow. </p><p>Specific best practices can ensure that staff members and officers consistently project a strong level of professionalism to other company personnel. One of these is presence. Uniforms, if worn, should be consistent. Officers should engage all persons entering the facility with eye contact. Officers should not be texting or talking on their cell phones, or congregating in an area to smoke and joke.             </p><p>Security leaders must also be careful to prevent “mission creep,” or assigning nonsecurity duties to security personnel. This may distract security staffers from their core duties, to the detriment of the organization’s security culture.  </p><p>For example, one company used the security department to conduct security training as well as training in legal issues, compliance, and ethics. Security’s training duties also included tracking of annual requirements for all of the compliance-based training, for both employees and nonemployees. The two training avenues, employee and nonemployee, were not standardized between departments. Because of the lack of standardization, there were two completely different methods of administering, developing, and tracking training.   </p><p>In this case, the solution was to clearly define the security and human resources missions at the company. Once defined, human resources assumed control of the entire company training program and standardized the administration of training. Security was responsible only for content of any security-related training.​</p><h4>Training</h4><p>A strong security culture requires an effective training program for both existing and future security personnel. In addition, the process should ensure that security personnel are cross-trained in security position responsibilities and missions, to eliminate the potential for gaps in coverage should a critical team member be unavailable. </p><p>For example, if a company’s security missions are asset protection, compliance, and physical access control, the manual of operations would contain a section of step-by-step procedures and guidelines for each. This would allow the asset protection specialist to cover for the physical access control specialist for certain tasks, such as issuing badges, instead of waiting for the access control specialist to return. </p><p>In addition, companies should pay close attention to the processes and standards for granting and tracking access that are documented in the manual of operations. This can be an issue if companies have manual, cumbersome, or archaic methods for granting access. At many companies, this is an area that needs to be addressed. The granting of physical access should be automated to an electronic format.​</p><h4>Communication</h4><p>Communication is one of the critical keys to success in any security program, and it will be part of every component of the program. From the initial assessment of the program to the final phases of the implementation of blueprint plans, all affected parties should be kept informed and aware of the security program and how it will impact their operations at work.  </p><p>One company initiated a report that was sent twice a month via e-mail with the facts of any security incidents, so executives could track important issues. This communication also allowed security to remain within the scope of the executives while maintaining a successful program. As security expanded and implemented new initiatives, these were included in the bimonthly report. </p><p>For their part, the executives of the firm should be involved and engaged early on in the communications effort. Security should offer concise presentations, such as a PowerPoint presentation, that explain how the company benefits from the security program, be it through incident prevention or the preparedness to react and minimize negative impact to the company’s operations. Security goals, objectives, operations, procedures, and mission statements should be effectively communicated across the corporate footprint. Executives should understand the security role in their company and communicate their support for security programs to all company employees.  </p><p>Within the chain of command, the security leader must develop a system of communication to keep executives aware of the challenges faced by the security department and of the programs currently being used to protect the company’s physical assets. For example, at one company I worked at, security mandated monthly luncheon meetings with staff.</p><p>Company executives were also invited to these meetings, which they attended periodically. I documented each of these meetings in formal memoranda, including progress made on issues from the prior month, issues resolved, and problems currently being addressed. These memos were sent up the chain of command for executive review.  </p><p>Annual security awareness training is another effective communications tool. By delivering accurate, updated, and simple instructions regarding security rules, policies, and procedures, the company can effectively ensure that its workforce has been periodically exposed to security standards and the roles and responsibilities in daily operations. Security awareness posters that are updated quarterly can also help in communication efforts.   </p><p> Finally, do not underestimate the power of word of mouth. For any company, there is no stronger security tool than having a workforce that is security- minded and well informed of current security policies, procedures, and daily practices. ​</p><h4>Violations</h4><p>Even with a well-established culture of security, violations of an organization’s security policies will occur.   </p><p>There are slips and breaches even in the most secure environments—some caused by intentional acts; some unintentionally, through malaise or misfortune. And while the people who work for an organization are its greatest asset, they also can be its greatest vulnerability if they decide to inflict harm. They know how the organization operates, and they can circumvent the most sophisticated security systems.  </p><p>For private industry, the enforcement of security program policies requires a company to be fair, firm, and consistent. Take, for example, a company that has a clear security rule that all visitors must be escorted by the company representative who is responsible for the visitor while on premises. If a visitor is found roaming around by himself in a secure area, the employee who brought the visitor to the property should be disciplined.  </p><p>And the discipline should be consistent, whether the employee is the CEO or the janitor. The enforcement should be documented and tracked, to monitor patterns of behavior. If the violation is severe enough that it results in a loss of property or affects employee safety, the matter should be referred to the violator’s manager for evaluation and possible further action. </p><p>Consistent and fair enforcement of the rules across the entire organization will further solidify a culture of security. It will demonstrate that security matters to the organization, and that it plans to ensure that the rules are followed. To expand on an earlier example, if the CEO forgets his or her access badge and either goes home and gets it or signs for a temporary one, the standard is set at the highest level of the company.  </p><p>In the end, success in developing a culture of security at your company will mean the organization has established a robust, comprehensively assessed, and documented security program across the enterprise. Executive leaders are meaningfully engaged, and everyone is educated in the program’s components and follows them. </p><p>--<br></p><p><em><strong>Thomas Trier</strong> served for 25 years as a special agent of the FBI, where he attained the rank of assistant special agent in charge in the intelligence branch of the FBI’s Washington Field Office. Trier has also served as the leader of corporate security for a Midwestern electrical transmission-only utility company. He now provides advisory services through Security Intelligence Consulting L.L.C.</em></p>GP0|#28ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997;L0|#028ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997|Strategic Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a4344465