Prevent Break and Enter of your Business!

For the provision of security and safety of staff to be successful, it must be an on going exercise.  It must be addressed in a number of stages. 


After an original Risk Assessment and Analysis of all security and work place issues, a security plan must be formulated and approved.  Education of staff of the plan is then necessary.  The plan must be audited regularly and improved upon, where further risk is assessed. 


Risk Assessment

A Risk assessment with respect to your building and staff security should be carried out in accordance with AS NZ ISO 31000 – 2009 Risk Management and the ‘Best Practice’ model for Forensic Security Audits issued by the International Association of Professional Security Consultants.


The detail and complexity of a risk assessment varies, depending on the context of the survey.  This can be quite time consuming, however if no risk assessment has been completed previously, this should be the first step.   


The security risk survey process is as follows:


Risk Assessment

All relevant material that provides information on the premises and surrounding area is obtained.


  • Staff are consulted and interviewed


  • Previous incidents are considered


  • Reports of relevant crime on the premises or in the area are considered


  • Media reports relating to similar organisations are considered


  • All current threats are identified


  • The site and surrounding relevant area is inspected


  • The layout of the premises is considered


  • Relevant factors affecting security and safety are evaluated (lighting, lines of sight, places of concealment, remoteness, accessibility, perimeters, security measures, conditions etc),


  • The characteristics of the surrounding area are considered



Security Survey




  • Personnel


  • Night security guard(s) duties, job description, staffing levels, instructions, duty hours, equipment provided, tours, training, hiring procedures and supervision is considered;


  • Police presence and actions are considered;


  • The roles of non staff related persons who may affect the security posture are considered;


  • The qualifications of all personnel are considered;


  • Current Security Program;


  • Current Security related policies and procedures are reviewed;


  • Previous risk assessments are requested and reviewed;


  • Security Equipment is assessed;


  • The building design and plans are reviewed;


  • All structural security features are inspected;


  • The position, function and maintenance of relevant security equipment and features are considered;




Based on the information obtained in the risk assessment and security survey, a qualitative analysis is completed, using experience, education and training.



Based on the analysis, a risk register and risk treatment schedule and Security plan is complied.  Recommendations are also included that provide remedies for those assessed risks. 

The following chart illustrates the process:



Security Plan

Security is maintaining a stable, relatively predictable environment in which an individual or group may pursue its ends without disruption or harm and without fear of disturbance or injury.


It is essential, in the best interest of security, that a detailed physical security plan is developed and used.  The plan should include at the least special and general staff supervisor instructions, access and assets control, protective barriers and emergency procedures.

A security plan should be a ‘living document’ that is constantly reviewed (particularly after every incident) and updated where necessary.


Plan Outline

Typical topics that should be covered in a plan include:


  • Purpose
  • Area security
  • Control measures
    a. Personnel (staff, visitor, contractors, suppliers etc)
    b. Identification and control
    c. Asset control
    d. Vehicle control
  • Aids to security
    a. Protective barriers
    b. Lighting systems
    c. Intrusion detection systems
    d. Communications;
    e. Clear Deterrent Signage;
  • Security Forces (Police, emergency services, guards, patrols, monitors etc)
  • Emergency procedures (Each event dealt with separately)

a. Individual actions

b. Alert actions

c. Staff actions

  • Coordinating instructions (Includes coordination with outside agencies)
    Integration with local emergency and disaster plans
    a.Liaison and coordination
  • b. Local authorities b.Local support groups and elements


In my experience whilst making it more difficult for intruders to unlawfully enter your premises, making your premises a commercial unviable target is a key deterrent.  Advertising this fact is also a deterrent.


About the Author:


Michael Featherstone is a Risk Management consultant with over 33 year’s experience.  As managing director of he specialises is prevention of business risk and provides a Confidential Staff Line to business.

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