In office buildings, there are many potential external and internal threats at play. However, due to their unique characteristics — being neither entirely restricted or open — you must put in a lot of thought into the systems and processes you choose.
For this reason, we’ve created an office building security checklist that will help you identify the security systems you need to deter and stop external and internal threats.
Office Building Security Checklist
Design Your Office Building to Promote Security
Before installing cameras or key-card systems, you should ensure that the building’s overall design is naturally conducive for security. In other words, your office building shouldn’t be an easy place to hide in or lose someone, for example.
1. Natural Surveillance
One way to achieve that goal is to design for natural surveillance, i.e., you should organize the building’s inside and outside layout to maximize visibility.
For example, you should have lots of windows so that office workers can see what’s happening on the street. Likewise, each office’s reception desk should have full visibility of who is entering its doors and where those individuals are going when they enter the office.
This approach serves as a deterrence factor. Would-be intruders or malicious insiders are cognizant of the fact that their movements are tracked both by surveillance cameras and office staff.
2. Natural Access Control
The second major step you could take is to enable natural access control.
This approach may involve designing the building so that foot traffic flows in ways that prevent outsiders from easily getting to offices, and prevent threats from easily escaping your security team.
The idea — especially in buildings with lots of outside foot-traffic (e.g., the Royal Bank Plaza in Toronto) — is to steer people flowing through the premises to their destination (e.g., the subway or street) without them coming into contact with offices.
Likewise, if someone has business with those offices, they will need to take a route that should make them stand-out (i.e., natural surveillance). For example, visitors should only enter through a main door and come into contact with a concierge or reception desk.
As the person walks to a particular office, they should pass by areas where the business’ staff could see them. One way to contribute to this is by designing meeting rooms and offices with glass walls or connecting hallways to common areas such as a cafeteria.
Install the Right Security Systems
Though a good idea, there’s a limit to what natural surveillance and natural access control can achieve. Natural surveillance and access control are, at heart, deterrence measures. Buildings require additional security measures for monitoring and controlling access.
3. Video Surveillance
Install a digital security camera system that offers 24/7 video surveillance of every office, hallway, and other potentially vulnerable areas.
In addition to monitoring those areas in off-times, such as overnight, video surveillance will also let you audit and investigate incidents. With video analytics, you can configure your surveillance cameras to alert your security team of elevated traffic, motion, and other abnormal activity.
4. Access Control
Your office building should also make extensive use of access control measures. In terms of physical security, this means placing key-code/card access locks on entry points (to offices), elevators, and other restricted areas.
In addition to traditional card access or key-code systems, you can also employ biometric authentication systems (e.g., fingerprint-scanning). Doing so will lower the risk of password leaks by tying it to the end-user; if that end-user leaves, you can quickly revoke their profile.
5. Alarm System Monitoring & Intrusion Detection
An alarm system will alert your building’s security team of a potential breach, enabling them to respond to the issue faster. The presence of said system could also deter would-be intruders by raising the risk of getting caught.
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You can also pair your alarm system with a law-enforcement response mechanism; in case of a breach, not only will the alarm system alert you, but it will also alert the police.
Overall, security systems — including video surveillance and access control — play a vital part in keeping your office building and its tenants safe and secure. However, it’s not easy to find and close every potential gap — failing to do so would leave you at risk.
Thus, a good starting point would be to speak to an experienced security systems consultant and integrator. Not only will such a partner identify your gaps, but they will enable you to seal them by leveraging proven technologies from the security industry.
Logixx Security has 47+ years of experience designing and installing custom security systems in office buildings of diverse designs and needs. Contact us today, and we’ll help you secure your business, employees, and assets from external and internal threats.