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How to prevent security breaches from the inside

How to prevent security breaches from the inside

When you think about the sheer number of external security threats your business faces, it is easy to forget about internal perils and dangers. A lot of the time, security breaches come from within an organisation and may be the result of an “insider job.”

Although most companies will subject new members of staff to in-depth interviews and carry out various background checks, you can never be too careful.

Key Patrol is a security company that specialises in protecting businesses from external intruders, but we know an ever-present threat exists from internal sources too. Therefore, here is how to prevent security breaches from the inside.

Change passwords and codes regularly

Changing and having to remember new passwords and codes might be a bit annoying, but it is highly advisable to keep internal security threats at bay. Try to change things like alarm codes and computer passwords every six months to ensure the business premises and important data is inaccessible and unattainable.

By updating these security measures regularly, you ensure that only trusted employees have control over the company’s most value assets. You can speak to us about the technical aspects of changing alarm codes or your IT department regarding regular password reminders.

Disable access for ex-employees

Regardless of whether it was their choice or not, you’re bound to have members of staff leaving the business every now and again. However, failing to disable access for ex-employees can be incredibly dangerous from a security perspective.

If they are still able to access email accounts or the local intranet, scores of sensitive documents are at risk. On top of that, they may still know alarm codes or have a card to enter the premises. So have a system in place to disable access for every member of staff that no longer works for the organisation.

Provide different passwords and codes for different people

This might be a bit tricky to implement, but it is a rather foolproof way of knowing who gained access to the building or premises when an incident takes place. With different passwords and codes assigned to different people, you can simply look at your records and see who was responsible.

The only problem with this is that intruders may have somehow gained access or stolen a member of staff’s security code or password. This might be an existing employee or anonymous individual, so don’t jump to conclusions too quickly.

Establish a circle of trust

You are no doubt aware that business clients and everyday consumers must trust your company if they are to strike a deal or make a purchase. However, the same goes for your workforce when it comes to internal security.

Therefore, try and establish a circle of trust between a small group of team members. These should be the individuals that need to know about things like alarm codes. Be certain that information does not go beyond this team and limit the amount of people who have access to security measures such as passwords.

For more advice, contact us right here at Key Patrol, a security company that provides keyholding and alarm response services as well as helpful assistance and guidance whenever needed!

Safeguarding your employees and customers from work-related violence

Safeguarding your employees and customers from work-related violence

As an employer, it is your ultimate responsibility to maintain the safest working conditions possible for your entire work-force.

According to HSE (the Health and Safety Executive) , the country’s independent regulator for health, safety and welfare, ‘work-related violence’ refers to “any incident in which a person is abused, threatened or assaulted in circumstances relating to their work. This can include verbal abuse or threats as well as physical attacks.”

Even though incidents like this don’t bear thinking about, all businesses need to be aware of work-related violence and take appropriate action when required. Licensed and retail premises are arguably at more risk, but every organisation, regardless of its size or sector, must realise work-related violence can occur at any time.

Key Patrol provides various security services to keep this threat at bay and helps various businesses stay protected from work-related violence. However, here is some more advice on this ever-present issue:-

Risks caused by a premises’ layout and lighting

In retail environments, it is important to think about the location of cash tills, blind spots, inappropriate counter design and poor layouts, as this can decrease the visibility of both staff and customers alike. As a result, potential criminals may feel more anonymous and less observed, thus increasing the likelihood of theft or even violence.

So, make sure customers and colleagues can be seen at all times. High and wide counters along with lots of mirrors can improve the visibility of concealed areas of any retail premises. See whether there is any way of preventing the build-up of crowds or queues and help to manage the way customers move and look around the premises. This approach may even lead to increased sales which is not a bad side effect of implementing effective layout changes!

Attention should also be focused on lighting, as dull interiors can make customers harder to spot and encourages offenders to steal or commit a crime. Adequate lighting enables you to spot aggressive behaviour and makes members of the public more comfortable. In this way, opportunistic thefts should be minimised too.

Preventive measures and security systems

Although you can do your bit to put off criminals and make customers feel more at ease, it is always advisable to implement a few additional preventive measures and security systems:-

  • Surveillance and CCTV – Without comprehensive surveillance and CCTV, potential offenders are given the opportunity to commit crime or violence. What’s more, without evidence of an incident, it can be difficult to identify and prosecute offenders. But CCTV works as a great deterrent and can identify criminals while making staff and customers feel safer.
  • Security devices – Things like burglar alarms and high security locks can markedly decrease the risk of work-related violence too. Even so, good quality materials and workmanship for locks on doors and windows is crucial and often overlooked. And if you choose to have an alarm installed, ensure that your staff are fully trained on how it works and know what to do should it go off. False alarms can scare and upset customers and some staff alike!
  • Security personnel – One of the best ways to keep work-related violence at bay is by hiring well-trained security personnel. They must have a suitable license to practice in the UK from the Security Industry Authority (SIA), but their presence is often enough to discourage offenders and put everyone else at ease.

Here at Key Patrol, we have trained and competent patrol officers on hand to safeguard your business at all times. However, our other security services can also provide added protection and greater peace of mind too.

Simply get in touch for a quick chat and we will take you through how we can protect both your staff and your business effectively.

Maintaining security during holidays and time off

Maintaining security during holidays and time off

Christmas and New Year will have been an enjoyable time for most of us and hopefully your business is now back up to speed once again. However, during the festive season and other holidays, your business premises tend to be more vulnerable to security threats and breaches chiefly because members of staff are enjoying some much needed time off.

This gives criminals the perfect opportunity to break-in, steal valuable assets or access sensitive information. So, even though work will be at the back of your mind during public holidays and even the weekend, it still requires a fair bit of attention and attentiveness.

Key Patrol is on hand to provide response security during these periods of downtime, but there are various others ways you can safeguard your business premises even when employees and customers are absent.

Look for any security issues or faults

First and foremost, make sure your site or premises has no existing faults that need fixing. If so, these kinds of issues should be addressed as soon as possible to allow for any delays or further problems.

Criminals may have identified these flaws and be waiting for the perfect opportunity strike, such as during a holiday or weekend. So, be thorough in your checks and look at every possibility.

Ensure security systems are fully operational

If a remote monitoring centre is managing your surveillance system, then it is necessary to ensure that things like CCTV are fully operational. Be certain visibility is good enough, make sure there are no blind spots and remove any obstructions that exist.

You may also want to test your alarm system to see whether it is working too and when the time comes to leave, double check all windows and doors are locked.

Inform the necessary people

If a remote monitoring station is taking charge of your security, make sure they know when the premises will be empty and keep them in the loop regarding any changes. If any key holders want to access the site or property at any time, they must make it known to the remote monitoring station.

It is also a good idea to update the contact details of senior employees and key holders. In the event of an incident, they will need to let the appropriate people know quickly and a lack of communication could be very dangerous.

Bring in additional security

If you’re worried that your existing security set-up isn’t good enough, you can always bring in some additional protection. Here at Key Patrol, we can provide mobile patrols and key holding services in addition to response security.

With these measures in place, you can rest assured that the risk of security breaches will be minimised. And if an incident does occur, trained professionals will be on hand to react and respond in the most appropriate way possible.

Just because you and your employees are taking time off does not mean to say criminals are too. Therefore, always remain vigilant against security threats during the holidays and periods of downtime.

The Devil makes work for idle hands!

Remember that old saying, ‘the devil makes work for idle hands’, it has probably never been more appropriate than during times when staff are not onsite as often as they usually would be! Make sure that you are on your guard, as much as possible, at such times.

Why should your business employ a security guard?

Why should your business employ a security guard?

Even though every business these days constantly worries about generating enough turnover and improving profit margins, this kind of concern is preferable to fretting over possible break-ins from criminals. Sadly, in the modern world, such break-ins are becoming all too common!

In addition to losing expensive equipment and assets that can be sold on, most modern businesses will have confidential and sensitive information, which needs protection as well. While a lot will depend on the type and nature of the business, hiring a security guard brings about several benefits that the majority of entrepreneurs and enterprises would appreciate.

Key Patrol, a leading provider of security guards in Essex and the rest of the UK, are on hand to deliver the following advantages.

Better prevention

Robbers and raiders will be put off the thought of attempting a burglary simply by the sight of imposing uniformed protection standing guard. What’s more, proficient and professional guards are trained to look out for suspicious activity and can alert the appropriate authorities or take action on the spot.

As opposed to a standard security system or CCTV, guards represent more of a real threat and are a greater visual deterrent, as they show that your business is largely impenetrable to criminal activity due to the physical presence of highly trained people.

Expert handling of incidents

Security guards aren’t just muscular and fearsome looking individuals, they are also comprehensively trained to deal with all manner of transgressions, misdemeanours and infractions of the law.

Therefore, if your business does suffer from a break-in, security guards are there to react and respond. From simply taking down notes and contacting the police to chasing and detaining criminals, they’re capable of handling incidents in a variety of different ways.

Friendly and reassuring face

If people are constantly coming from and going to your business, a security guard can make clientele feel safe and act as brand ambassadors. Whether they’re manning a front desk or restricting access to certain areas, security guards are able to perform more than one task as well.

There is a good chance that customers will go to a security guard first for directions to a particular department or information about a specific product. So with a security guard you not only get protection, but a friendly and reassuring face too.

Peace of mind

Perhaps the main reason you may choose to hire a security guard is for the peace of mind that the business will remain safe and free from harm. This will be a feeling echoed by customers, clients and employees, who are bound to be more relaxed and at ease with a security guard around.

Employing professions to look after the business may also improve your reputation and standing. Everyone associated with the company will appreciate the steps you’ve taken to ensure they are protected.

Despite the fact that technological advancements are making places of business more secure than ever before, sometimes the simplest methods remain the best. Here at Key Patrol, we believe that our security guards in Essex and the surrounding area provide invaluable protection for both everyday consumers and big businesses.

What does keyholding mean and why should you choose this form of business security?

What does keyholding mean and why should you choose this form of business security?

Even though there are a number of security options a business can explore, keyholding is one of the most attractive. However, several people do not know what this term refers to and the benefits that come with it.

Key Patrol is one of the leading security companies in Essex and, naturally, across the rest of the UK too. They are always on hand to explain what keyholding means and why it makes sense to choose this form of business security.

What does key holding mean?

Keyholding is when a business gives a security firm the keys to its premises. So when the alarm goes off or if there is an out-of-hours intrusion, the security provider is on hand to respond in a prompt and appropriate way. The key holder may also be required to give access to cleaners and maintenance or simply patrol the property overnight.

Keys are typically stored in a key vault or mobile unit in accordance with regulatory standards. For security reasons, they are not usually labelled with the business’s name and feature a code, colour or marking instead.

Why should you choose key holding?

  • 24/7 Service – Regardless of whether a break-in occurs late at night or in the early hours of the morning, it is a key holder’s duty to be on call 24/7. Therefore, you can rest assured that your business will be protected and safeguarded around the clock.
  • Response time – Seeing as many professional key holding services make use of mobile units, you will benefit from rapid response times. Along with securing the premises quickly, they may even be able to catch the perpetrators red handed.
  • Low risk – Having a trained key holder look after your premises eliminates potential risk for you and the business’s employees. If you or another member of staff were to respond to an alarm or intrusion, there is a chance that burglars could cause harm or injury.
  • Responsibility – A professional key holding company will know exactly how alarm systems work, how to deal with thieves and how to report crimes. This heavy responsibility may be too much for you or your workforce to handle.
  • False alarms – Most intruder activations are actually false alarms, which can be incredibly inconvenient to you and detrimental to business productivity. But this won’t be a problem if a key holding firm is handling your security.
  • Cost-effectiveness – Compared to employing security guards to be at your premises all the time, key holding is a much more cost-effective way of safeguarding valuable business assets.
  • Peace of mind – Perhaps above all else, keyholding gives you real peace of mind that any burglary or alarm activation will be dealt with swiftly in a proficient and professional way.

For these reasons, your business could really benefit from choosing a keyholding provider like Key Patrol. Although there are various security companies in Essex providing this kind of service, Key Patrol was formed on a combined background of over 50 years industry experience and strives to deliver the best solution for each individual customer.

Improving security for new business premises

Improving security for new business premises

When a business moves into new premises, it is usually because things are going well and more room is needed to expand. However, this doesn’t mean to say a different property is more safe and secure against the threat of theft and burglaries.

Offences against businesses are still responsible for 20 per cent of all recorded crime in the UK, while cyber crime costs organisations in excess of £21 billion a year. Therefore, all that success and growth could be undone when you move premises if the necessary precautions aren’t implemented.

With this in mind, here is some advice on how to safeguard your new property from Key Patrol, a leading building security services supplier.

Conduct a risk assessment

By identifying where the business is most vulnerable, you can choose the most appropriate and effective security solutions and services. If possible, find out whether the property or premises has been burgled before and go from there.

Address basic security

From strengthening doors to fitting window locks and installing motion sensor lightning, there are various ways you can improve basic security for common access points, as this will protect against amateurish unplanned burglaries. However, you may need to look at alarm systems and CCTV as well, which could be expensive but is much more effective and beneficial in the long run particularly to provide protection from well-planned burglaries or inside jobs.

Protect the workforce

Even though you’ll no doubt have lots of costly assets to protect, your employees should always be top priority. Therefore, make sure they are comfortable in their new surroundings and think about conducting some security training. Along with knowing what to do when a theft occurs, they may also be able to recognise suspicious behaviour and prevent crime form happening in the first place.

Secure equipment and stock

Although you might not like to admit it, employees may also be a security risk. Therefore, be organised with your stock, carry out regular equipment audits and make sure that members of staff responsible for opening or locking up can be trusted. If not, you may need to think about employing the services of a professional keyholding firm.

Prevent information theft

Apart from physical building protection from a security services provider, financial records and employee details are sometimes just as valuable as physical equipment and stock. What’s more, this information tends to be quite sensitive and could ruin the business if found in the wrong hands. Therefore, review computer access controls, install anti-virus software and always shred paper waste.

Seek advice from a professional

If you have concerns over the property’s security or don’t know where and how improvements can be made, contact a professional for help and advice. Building security services company Key Patrol was formed on a combined background of over 50 years experience in the industry and prides itself on delivering tailor-made customer solutions.

Carry out regular checks

Just because you have implemented a number of security systems and solutions doesn’t mean to say that the tactics and techniques used by criminals will stay the same. So, always carry out regular checks to make sure your property and business won’t become a victim of crime.

How to secure your business premises overnight

How to secure your business premises overnight

In the daytime or during normal working hours, you can be fairly sure that the threat your business faces from break-ins and burglaries is fairly low. But when the lights go off and everyone returns home, how safe will your premises be?

In addition to worrying about whether the last person to leave closed the windows and locked the doors, you’ll no doubt be wondering whether current preventative measures or existing security systems are good enough to protect all of the company’s valuable assets.

This a problem that Key Patrol, a keyholding and security company in Essex, hears about all the time. But there are various ways in which any business can secure their premises overnight.

Improve lighting

It may not actually stop crimes from happening, but improving the lighting in and around your premises is an effective preventative measure. Robbers prefer to work under the cover of darkness, so by shedding more light on their unlawful activity, they will be less inclined to break-in.

If you’re worried about your electricity footprint, you can install motion sensors or energy efficient light bulbs. While this might be the least secure option, it is fairly cheap to implement.

Install alarm or CCTV system

It is fair to say that the majority of modern businesses will have some sort of alarm or CCTV installed on the premises. However, it could be out of date or no longer provides adequate protection against today’s criminals.

An all-encompassing alarm can be managed from a central monitoring station, which will alert the authorities when something or someone triggers the system. CCTV also acts as a deterrent while catching the perpetrators red handed, hopefully leading to punishment and the recovery of stolen goods.

Keyholding

Leaving the responsibility of securing the premises to any employee can be incredibly risky, as they could easily forget or fail to arm an alarm system correctly. However, hiring a professional to secure the site and be on call should any incident occur provides the ultimate protection.

Keyholders can respond rapidly to any break-ins, arrange manned guarding in the event of a serious incident, co-operate with the appropriate authorities and produce detailed reports about what action was taken. This is where a professional security company based in Essex, such as ourselves, really comes into the equation, especially where you may need a fast and efficient local response.

Security guards or mobile patrols

When the business is open, security guards are friendly faces that make clients or customers feel at ease while providing information and directions if asked. But at night, they can also make sure your business remains impenetrable from thieves and burglars.

Mobile patrols can also carry out external and internal building monitoring to an agreed schedule while maintaining a visual and preventative presence. They are also incredibly cost effective, as mobile patrols can work hand in hand with existing alarm systems or keyholding services but only be called upon when needed.

Business security doesn’t end when you leave the premises at night; it is a round-the-clock responsibility. But with the assistance of someone like Key Patrol, a leading security company in Essex, this ongoing duty is a lot easier to manage.

The Most Useful Services Offered by Security Companies in London

The Most Useful Services Offered by Security Companies in London

Security Companies in London

There are many, many different services offered by security companies in London, and it can be hard to know which services will bring the greatest benefit to your business. Which services are the best can, to a large extent, depend on the individual needs and circumstances of your business, but in general terms some of the services that security companies in London can offer tend to prove especially useful.

Some of the most widely beneficial services you might like to consider are:

Security Patrols

Security patrols provide a trained professional who will be onsite to look for and deal with any signs of wrongdoing or security issues. This alone is an incredibly useful thing to have. However, there is another aspect to security patrols with trained security guards or security officers. Just as prevention is better than cure, some of the most valuable security services are those that carry a deterrent aspect and help to prevent issues from developing in the first place.

A visible security presence, in a recognisable uniform or liveried vehicle, is a powerful deterrent to a criminal who is viewing your premises as a potential target. It is very likely it will be enough to put them off altogether, and prevent your company from having problems such as break-ins in the first place.

Key Holder Service – for a fast response

A key holder service can be a very useful service to have, not least because it is an extremely convenient one for site managers. When a response from a key holder is required, whether there is a real emergency or not, it often means that site managers or business owners are dragged from their beds at inconvenient hours and face a long journey.

Often there is no real emergency, and when there is a site manager or the owner of the business may not be the best-equipped person to deal with it because this is not their speciality.

A professional key holder service will not only save the trouble, but guarantee a fast response from somebody who has the necessary expertise to handle any situation they may find upon arrival.

This makes the solution better on multiple levels than keeping all your keys in-house.

Escorts – providing enhanced security to you

If your business handles valuable goods or is transporting a lot of money obtained through, for example, cash payments for goods and services, an escort service can be invaluable. A lot of smaller businesses, especially, have concerns about the safety of their assets and even more importantly their staff when they have to transport such valuable cargo.

Unlike major banks or other, similar companies they do not have large-scale security solutions for the safe, regular transport of such things. An external security escort service is the simple and affordable solution to this. Security companies in London offering this kind of service can provide a safe transport process with the protection of well-trained and well-equipped professionals. This will keep your staff and assets secure while ensuring that whatever valuable items you are transporting will be able to reach their destinations safely.

It is always a good idea to protect your valuable assets, staff and loved ones wherever possible particularly in large conurbations such as London. If you are looking for security companies in London or in similar large cities then there are many professional Security Services providers available to work with.

Finally, make sure that you take all of the factors that we have highlighted above into consideration in order to engage the most professional, proactive and responsive security services that are available.

The Signs of a Reliable Security Company in the UK

The Signs of a Reliable Security Company in the UK

Security Company in the UK

With a wide range of security companies in the UK offering an even wider array of services, it can be difficult to know which are the most reliable and trustworthy. There are a number of factors you can look for that will help you to mark out and identify the best and most reliable security companies.

Security, both in the home and at your place of work is important and yet is sometimes overlooked until it is too late due to a problem such as a break-in or robbery.

Looking for these positive factors can help you to identify a security company that will prove both reliable and offer the standards you need. In short, it will help you to find a company you can safely entrust your business’ interests to with confidence.

Look for Industry Accreditation

Across the United Kingdom, Reliable Security companies will often carry some form of Security industry accreditation, or other form of recognition. For example, they may conform to standards set by bodies such as the BSI, either for their operations in general or specific areas of their activities.

They may also hold specific accreditation from bodies and organisations such as the Security Industry Authority (SIA), which carries government approval, or of specific schemes aimed at improving quality in areas such as health and safety. All of these approvals, accreditations and other forms of recognition show that a reliable, independent body with expert knowledge has recognised them for high standards in either a specific area or their operations as a whole. This goes a very long way in helping to denote a reliable and trustworthy company.

Check for Commitment to Quality

Every company insists that it is committed to providing a high quality service and upholding lofty standards, but that is partly because it is one of the simplest and most obvious things that a potential client wants to hear.

While many companies make the claim, not all of them have anything to back those claims up with. Keep this in mind when reading through their website and other materials and even when talking to staff. Look for things that support their claims of commitment to quality and denote a company that is making an effort to offer the best possible service. Industry accreditation and recognition, as discussed above, is one good sign. So are processes like strict screening of potential staff members or stated response times when called upon in an emergency.

Identify Happy Customers

Ultimately, when possible the best way to find out whether a security company is reliable and offers a good standard of service is through other clients. Look for testimonials and reviews when possible.

If a company publishes testimonials on its own website, this is a good sign but not infallible. It shows they certainly have at least some happy customers who have given testimonials worth sharing. However, it is natural that almost every company will have picked the best, most glowing testimonials to make them look good so it is hardly impartial. Independent reviews on third party sites are a better indicator, and can help you judge whether they have a string of happy clients who feel the company has proved itself trustworthy, or customers who were less than impressed with the service they received.

At the end of the day, when selecting a security company – UK based or further abroad – check these basics out and you should not go too far wrong with your final choice of Security Industry service provider!

Security for both yourself and your business in an important consideration and should be treated with the respect that it deserves.

Finding the Right Security Company in London

Finding the Right Security Company in London

Security Company in London

Whether you are located in a large city or the country, the right security company can do a lot to ensure the safety of your business, protect its assets, and ensure that crimes such as theft and vandalism do not get in the way of its operations. However, busy cities such as London are awash with security companies both large and small, and this can make it difficult to choose the right one.

However, making the correct choice can ensure that your business benefits from the greatest possible levels of protection and a few simple considerations can help you to identify the most appropriate security company in London or elsewhere.

Services Offered

The simplest and most obvious thing to consider about the services they offer is whether these are the kind of services you need.

It is best to have a good idea of this before you start looking. Don’t just look for a company that sounds reliable and take whatever kind of security package they happen to offer, but think about what sort of service could benefit your company best and look for the best company that offers them. At the same time, it is good to balance this with some recognition that the companies are (or should be) experts in their area, and so their opinions and recommendations are well worth considering.

You could also look at the range of services on offer. One of the larger Security firms, that can offer a fully comprehensive and wide range of security services, can be good if you have a diverse range of needs and require the most comprehensive security package possible, but there is a danger you will end up with something of a “Jack of all trades” service.

A company that specialises in a narrower range of services that work well together to form a coherent package could be a better choice if those trades align nicely with your needs.

Look into their Expertise

There are a number of things to do to assess the expertise of a security company in London or any large city. One is simply to pay close attention to their promotional materials and, if you get in touch, make sure you talk over your needs in real depth. It is often possible to get an idea from this initial conversation whether the company’s staff and materials seem to be drawing on an in-depth knowledge of their subject or only a basic one.

It is also a good idea to look for any forms of accreditation or recognition that a company holds. The Security Industry Authority (SIA) and the SAFEcontractor scheme both provide accreditation to security companies, and it is also good to look for industry awards or quality standards from professional or regulatory bodies. Generally speaking, the more accreditations the better when it comes to the security industry because those awards provide legitimacy to the company. They also provide you with the knowledge that they are not just a fly by night operator!

Check their History

While this consideration is not infallible, a company with a long trading history is generally going to be more likely to offer a good-quality security service. This is true both because the company will have had longer to develop its services and processes, and because long-term survival in a competitive industry often denotes a higher standard of service.

It is also possible to look into the history of a security company in London on a more personal, individual level. Thanks to the internet, you may be able to find testimonials from previous or current clients giving a first-hand insight into their quality of service.

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