The Privatization of America: Security
There is Always Room For Improvement and Innovation
It may be plain to see that the relationships between the public and private sectors in the United States are getting stronger every year. Accounting systems, water treatment facilities, computer systems, payroll systems – you name it, it’s no longer exclusively run by the government. It can also be seen especially in recent years as more security threats and privatization within the security industry have developed a need for partnerships amongst private security and the government. There is always room for improvement and innovation, which are two critical points for the security industry. Stagnation and refusal to adapt to new necessities and stronger security threats will cause massive amounts of trouble.
Starting with enhancement and improvement, there are many ways that the industry can move forward. When it comes to partnerships between the private sector and public sector, there is a key issue that needs to be addressed: public awareness. Ask the average Joe about critical infrastructure, and they probably won’t know what it is. Even with a brief explanation they will probably think that the government runs or protects all of these things, even though over 80% of our critical infrastructure is privatized. To get citizens to understand that these responsibilities fall on white-collar and blue-collar workers to protect our infrastructure is important. The average security guard is not only protecting a facility if they are working at the Super Bowl, they are actively preventing violence, chaos and potential terrorism. Wall Street bankers need to be on the lookout for fraud and potentially catastrophic financial decisions to help prevent (another) crippling economic environment that affects our entire country. The average citizen has to understand the magnitude of their duties when they work in parts of our critical infrastructure that what they do impacts our country.
On the innovation front, new ideas and products come from all directions to make our vulnerabilities into strengths. A vulnerability that is not being addressed is our nation’s bus system. Transportation is a huge part of our infrastructure, and while airline security goes seemingly overboard to secure our airports, less is done for trains and subways, though there are still police, guards and cameras. Our bus system is extremely vulnerable. A shutdown of a city train line would be disastrous, yes, but something would have to be done on a large scale, and even if something were done, the subway system in New York City or another municipality could be locked down. With city buses and cross-country buses, there are hundreds of stops in each city alone.
How can our buses be more secure? In short, partnership. Any person can hop onto a bus with a small explosive hidden in their bag and on their person, and if a few of these bombings were to occur it would cause widespread fear and panic. To that end, city and private bus companies should reach out to our government to help create some safeguards. Cameras on buses are a good start, but can only be used to review situations that have occurred. That’s a good thing when it comes making potential perpetrators know they will be recorded. But what’s really needed is some sort of “bus marshal” program. For instance, cities can team up with the federal, state and local government to train licensed security guards to patrol bus stops and ride buses looking for suspicious behavior. This program could also be widely publicized to instill a sense of fear for potential perpetrators, and the physical presence could help people feel safer.
There are many ideas out there that can improve the safety and security of our country. But every idea needs to communicated, and the more connected the public and private sector can be, the better off the average citizen is every day.
Can You Imagine That There Are No Security System To Protect The City's Infrastructure And Transporation System?
Protect Our Country, City and the Environment
The Story of Stuff...
If you have never watched the story of stuff, I highly recommend it because it’s a great video and you can learn a lot of interesting facts. This might even change the way you view the world we live in and change your lifestyle. By watching the video, I hope you can take some of the information from it and share it with others, and tell them about how we are treating our planet and take part in making a change to save our planet.
Part of protecting our country involves taking care of our planet that we live in. In the video “The Story of Stuff” Annie Leonard shows us how much damage we are causing to the Earth and the way that our stuff is being manufactured isn’t good for the environment. We are using up all of our resources at an alarming rate. There is also great information on the government and big corporations so make sure to watch and share what you think about it by commenting below. It really is a great video to watch and I hope you find it interesting.
The video description- “From its extraction through sale, use and disposal, all the stuff in our lives affects communities at home and abroad, yet most of this is hidden from view. The Story of Stuff is a 20-minute, fast-paced, fact-filled look at the underside of our production and consumption patterns. The Story of Stuff exposes the connections between a huge number of environmental and social issues, and calls us together to create a more sustainable and just world. It'll teach you something, it'll make you laugh, and it just may change the way you look at all the stuff in your life forever.”
The Story of Stuff
What Can Be Done To Improve Business Security?
Security has become a major concern for many small businesses in today’s world. Not only must your physical location be secured with video cameras, alarm systems etc. Businesses must also secure their computer infrastructure in order to keep valuable data from getting into the wrong hands. To keep your business secure it’s going to require help from trusted vendors and advice from trusted resources. When receiving advice from anyone, analyze it, get a second opinion and then make a decision. Here are five steps to improve security in a small business.
Step #1 – Using Open Source Software
If you have intellectual property, for example, proprietary software coding for software you built, schedule a one-hour meeting with your team and discuss how much the designs are worth to the business in dollars and cents. Usually your finance/accounting departments can quickly determine the value of any digital, reputational, physical or operational assets to your business. If this information is stored on your computer, you can get free open source disk encryption software to protect this data. This is useful incase of a breach attempt and the compute is taken, or a notebook is lost, the data will be worthless to the thief.
Step #2 – Do not store your customers’ private information and credit cards on a computer
One thing that I was always told is to never carry your passport or birth certificate in your pocket because if this is lost people can basically steal your identity. Well the same goes for storing this information on a computer. Don’t store your customers’ information online because this data can be stolen and end up in the wrong hands. Telling your customers that you value their private information will help earn their trust.
Step #3 – Monitor your business partners
Monitoring your business partners is important because data loss happens with business partners. Write a non-disclosure agreement with your business partners and trust them, and audit their compliance at least once a year with a face-to-face interview.
Step #4 – Conduct annual security awareness training
Having security awareness training to inform your employees the importance of security is always helpful but it could be boring. Keep these training sessions short and to the point and they’ll thank you when it’s finished.
Step #5 – Don’t just buy whatever your IT consultant is selling
By now – you are getting the feel of how security works. Thinking about asset value, attacks and cost-effective security countermeasures like encryption. Download the free risk assessment software and get a feel for your value at risk.
After you’ve done some analysis of business risk and threats you will be in an excellent position to talk with your IT consultant. While most companies don’t enjoy discussing about data theft issues, it’s almost priceless to talk to colleagues in your market and get a sense of what they have done and how well the controls perform.
America the Vulnerable
If you have never read the book America the Vulnerable: How Our Government Is Failing to Protect Us from Terrorism, your missing out on a good book to read.
"Three years after September 11, we are still dangerously unprepared to prevent or respond to anotherattack on American soil. Faced with this threat, the United States should be operating on a wartime footingat home. But despite the many new security precautionsthat have been proposed, our most serious vulnerabilities remain ominously exposed.
In this powerful and urgently needed call to action, Stephen Flynn offers a startling portrait of the radical shortcomings in America's current plan for homeland security. He describes a frightening scenario of what the next major terrorist attack might look like, revealing the tragic loss of life and economic havoc it would leave in its wake, as well as the seismic political consequences it would have in Washington.
Despite increased awareness, we still offer our enemies a vast menu of soft targets: water and food supplies; chemical plants; energy grids and pipelines; bridges, tunnels, and ports; and the millions of cargo containers that carry most of the goods we depend upon in our everyday lives. The measures we have cobbled together to protect these vital systems are hardly fit to deter amateur thieves, vandals, and smugglers, letalone determined terrorists. Worse still, small improvements are often oversold as giant steps forward, lowering the guard of the average citizen and building an unwarranted sense of confidence.
It does not have to be this way. Flynn carefully outlines a bold yet practical plan for achieving security in a way that is safe and smart, effective and manageable. In a new world of heightened risk and fear, America the Vulnerable delivers a timely, forceful message that cannot be ignored."
This book makes great arguments to why we need to improve our homeland security and it's a great starting point for what the U.S. needs to do with regard to homeland security. Overall this is a great book to read and will give insight to how the government's security needs to improve.
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