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Crescent Guardian Security Company
Headquarters: New Orleans
Offices: Atlanta | Dallas
E-mail: info@cgiprotects.com
1 (800) 650-0706 or (504) 483-7811
Crescent Guardian Security Company

Security Tips Blog

Jul 23

 

Do you have an eye for security? Here's your chance to prove it. Try to find all five security threats in the image below in less than 20 seconds.

If a security team has not yet integrated behavioral analytics into their surveillance camera system, which can spot and prevent threats before they can become crimes, then they must rely on human eyes to watch and catch everything.

Now you get to test yourself and see how well you'd do watching one camera.

 

May 23

Recently, Time Magazine published an article titled Homeland Insecurity: After Boston, The Struggle Between Liberty and Security. The piece questions at what point does the increased threat of terrorism encroach on our right to privacy. Well, as the world becomes more populated and potential threats rise, this very hot topic will continue to grow.

In short, the TIME article states, “With al-Qaeda weakened abroad but self-taught, wi-fi-empowered jihadis increasingly a threat at home, balancing freedom and security is an old problem we’ll have to get used to once again."

Security is a way of life in today’s world, and yet, all Americans deserve the right to their individual freedom. So, how can we strike a balance?

The article points to video surveillance and its intrusion on all individuals regardless of the possibility of security threats. While I believe that all individuals deserve their right to freedom, I equally believe that we deserve to be protected, or as protected as can be, from senseless and arbitrary violence.

The article goes on to say, “The failure to detect the brothers’ [Tsarnaev] plot seemed to some like a replay of 9/11, when communication failures between U.S. intelligence and law-enforcement services blew a chance to stop the attacks.”

In today’s world, video exists, whether we like it or not. Whether it is from stationary cameras posted on stoplights and street corners, or cameras in retails stores or offices, or on phones and handheld devices, it is everywhere. It is used most often as a forensic tool – evaluating situations after a breach occurs, such as breaking and entering, holdups, or even more violent acts of crime.

Although a camera captures images of all those in its field of view – perpetrator and victim alike – it is really only those who have had a hand in illegal acts that have cause for concern. According to Time’s article, authorities have identified a total of 21 homegrown jihadist-inspired terrorist plots and two attacks in the eight years after 9/11, and U.S. law enforcement made 42 arrests from May 2009 to December 2012. So whether it is acknowledged or not, the threat is real and it is here.

Now, take the fact that the average attention span of a security guard viewing CCTV feeds peaks at only 20 minutes. Given fatigue and other human factors, such as the blinking of an eye or some type of distraction, a high probability exists that some behavior will be missed. Fortunately, there are new tools, such as behavioral analytics, that assist human eyes by taking these video feeds and highlighting the potential threats while ignoring normal or ongoing behavior. This allows security personnel to anticipate possible threats and act accordingly. 



Not all potential threats can be acted upon and stopped before they occur, sometimes, because there is not enough warning. But the solutions such as behavioral analytics bypass the burden of needing human eyes staring at hundreds and hundreds of minutes of video footage 24x7, enabling primarily potential threats to be highlighted. At that point, experienced security personnel can decide if the threat is real and if it warrants further investigation.

By reducing the requirement to view all footage all the time, it does not offer greater liberty, but does put the emphasis squarely on prevention of threats rather than reacting to them after the fact.

We at Crescent Guardian believe it is every citizen’s right to civil liberties, but we also believe it is every citizen’s right to expect safety and security measures to protect us from harm. Continued vigilance by our citizens is the best way to reduce threats, but a helping hand from technology can go a long way to helping in the fight against crime and terrorism.

Fo more information on "smart" cameras and behavioral analytics, email rcavanagh@cgiprotects.com or call 504-483-7811.

Read the entire Time Magazine article here - http://swampland.time.com/2013/05/01/homeland-insecurity-after-boston-the-struggle-between-liberty-and-security/

Can An 82-Year-Old Beat Your Security?

// posted on Friday, May 10, 2013

May 10


A nun, a house painter and a drifter walk into a nuclear facility… If that sounds like the beginning to a bad joke, that's because it is.

Last July, an 82-year-old nun and two other fellow activists made their way past fences and security sensors on their way into the Y-12 complex, a Nuclear Security Administration facility called the "Fort Knox" of uranium, and spray-painted antiwar slogans on the exterior of a structure for storage of weapons-grade uranium…. spending several hours in the complex without any trouble. Then, on Wednesday, May 8, almost a year later, the three were convicted of interfering with national security and damaging the facility, possibly sending them to jail for 30 years each.

The incident has raised eyebrows and provided a wake-up call to many security professionals across the world. While the three claim they had no malicious intent, it's been reported that prosecutors argued the act was a serious security breach that continues to disrupt operations at the facility. The defending attorneys argued that the three are being made scapegoats for an embarrassing situation. In way, it is frightening to think what could have happened had someone more sinister tried to break in... But perhaps they were too assuming by the "Fort Knox" moniker to even attempt such a feat or think it possible. Whatever the case, this incident provides a prime opportunity to evaluate your own situation.

Is your business a frequent victim of graffiti?

Do people often trespass?

What kind of security are you using and what kind of holes may there be in it?

Physical security, an incredibly important aspect for proper safety, provides a primary buffer against criminal activity. When used in tandem with security technology, such as surveillance cameras, behavioral analytics software and access control, it helps ensure you employ several layers of security so your business doesn't experience a "Y-12" incident.

Not sure where your security's holes may be? Hire a reputable, professional security company to perform a security risk assessment and provide an analysis of your security. In short, theses assessments analyze the threats and vulnerabilities facing an entity while providing guidance on key areas that need to be addressed when developing a comprehensive and effective security plan and suggesting optimal security solutions and measures to reduce the likelihood of a threat developing.

Don't allow your business or organization to become the butt of a bad joke. Make sure your security is ready for anything criminals throws at you... even 82-year-old nuns. Ask about our security assessments today.

For more information on our free security risk assessments or how we can help you increase your security while decreasing your costs, email rcavanagh@cgiprotects.com or call 504.483.7811.

 


Read more about the Y-12 convictions:

Convicted Y-12 protesters remain jailed while judge mulls legal options
, Knox News -  http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2013/may/09/convicted-y-12-protesters-remain-jailed-while/


Nun, protesters guilty in nuclear plant break-in
, USA Today - http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/05/08/nun-protesters-guilty-nuclear-plant/2145361/


The Prophets of Oak Ridge
, Washington Times - http://www.washingtonpost.com/sf/style/2013/04/29/the-prophets-of-oak-ridge/

 

More details of stunning Y-12 break-in; protesters offered bread to guards, Knox News - http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2012/jul/31/more-details-of-stunning-y-12-break-in-offered/

 

Cost of intrusion at Y-12 nuke plant by peace activists goes beyond physical damage, Independent Mail - http://www.independentmail.com/news/2013/may/09/cost-intrusion-y-12-nuke-plant-peace-activists-goe/
 

Apr 05



Businesses usually get so wrapped up in their operation that security can often take a backseat and become an afterthought. The unfortunate thing is that line of action can cost a business... and cost them big.

Recently, copper thieves in the Greater New Orleans have been targeting air conditioner units in residential and commercial locations because they are easy targets. While this has increased in New Orleans, it's important to remember that copycat criminals often start similar crime waves in other areas. The thieves have been stealing the copper and aluminum condenser coils inside the units to sell as scrap, but because the metal is a mixture, it doesn't fetch as high a price as refined copper.

What's that mean? While the thieves do not make much on the actual theft, the businesses that fall victim to the crime are often left staring at a significant price tag of a few thousand dollars for fixing or replacing the units. One victim incurred $70,000 worth of damage. That's pretty incredible since the thieves don't really make that money on the theft, but do cause significant damage.



Theft of copper, brass and other valuable metals have become common as the cost of metal has risen. Thieves often will pull copper piping in homes under construction and cut brass fittings off office-building emergency fire hoses for easy scores. This type of theft is increasingly becoming one of single the biggest headaches for businesses. Not only are these metals increasingly valuable, access to it is generally pretty easy. Most construction sites or holding areas leave these items out in plain site, with little or no security in place to protect it.



Like any other company asset, copper needs to be accounted for and managed. Businesses concerned with protecting their assets should have a security risk assessment performed by a reputable security firm. It is essential to make sure the premises has all the appropriate security precautions needed. Guard Services and Video Monitoring solutions, such as surveillance cameras, motion detectors, and access control systems, can greatly help reduce loss via theft. These systems can play a large role in deterring crime, often identifying and preventing potential breaches or thefts before they can occur. And if they do occur, it's important to have the resources in place to be used for prosecution and insurance purposes.



Crescent Guardian has the means and capabilities to add video to any company's security mix, and guards to respond to potential security breaches -- saving a tremendous amount of time and money in prosecuting and trying to recover lost goods.

For more information on our free security risk assessments or how we can help you increase your security while decreasing your costs, email rcavanagh@cgiprotects.com or call 504.483.7811.

For more on the copper theft from air conditioning units story, click here - http://www.nola.com/crime/index.ssf/2013/04/copper_thieves_again_targeting.html#incart_river_default

Mar 25

 

Is airport security becoming too advanced for its own good? Low-tech breaches may pose a significant danger. 
 
In today’s technology obsessed world, many companies often focus their security on stopping criminals who may hack their computer servers or dress in all-black special ops gear for a late night heist. Unsurprisingly, some criminals find a low-tech approach can often be the most successful.
 
There’s a saying that if you walk in somewhere like you own the place no one will question you. This kind of attitude, which surprisingly can be very effective, demands vigilance by security at all times. Take for instance a recent event at the Philadelphia International Airport. There, a phony pilot bluffed his way through airport security, boarded a U.S. Airways flight and actually made it all the way into the cockpit before the crew realized he was lying and arrested. In a situation reminiscent of Leonardo Dicaprio’s movie Catch Me If You Can, French citizen Phillipe Jeannard dressed like an Air France captain and even sported a fake Air France I.D. card. Fortunately, no one was harmed and no damage done… except to confidence in the airport’s security.

While the airport’s security will be thoroughly evaluated, its huge error provides a great opportunity for you to review how your organization protects itself. What kind of security are you employing and what kind of holes may there be? Physical security, an incredibly important aspect for proper safety, provides a primary buffer against criminal activity. When used in tandem with security technology, such as surveillance cameras, behavioral analytics software and access control, it helps ensure you employ several layers of security so an incident like the phony pilot doesn’t happen to you. It’s also important to make sure that physical security is doing its job. While access control can provide a secure barrier to unauthorized access by employees without true credentials, security guards are typically the first ones to interact with a potential criminal and could prevent the incident before advancing. Security guards must always be on their toes and demand proper procedures from everyone they encounter while on the job that is trying to gain access somewhere.

While many people get caught up in the latest security technology and protection methods, which can be essential to security, it’s important we don’t forget to keep our guard up and watch for the less obvious breaches. State-of-the-art security technology can do a lot to help protect us, but in the end it still comes down to people as being the most important line of defense.

Email us at rcavanagh@cgiprotects.com or call 504-483-7811 to find out more about traditional physical security and state-of-the-art technology.

Read more about the phony pilot's story here - http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/22/travel/pennsylvania-pilot-impersonation/index.html

The Brussels Job: A $50 Million Diamond Heist

// posted on Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Feb 20



What could be stolen from your building in 3 minutes... confidential information? Artwork? A safe? 


On Monday, February 18, masked thieves stole $50 million in diamonds in a blitzkrieg-style heist at the Brussels Airport in Belgium in just three short minutes.

Using two vehicles, a team of heavily armed robbers were able to "breach" the security gates and offload diamonds, as well as an unspecified amount of gold and platinum, from the cargo hold of a stationery aircraft that was loading passengers. This flight, a simple passenger plane from Brussels to Zurich operated by Helvetic Airlines, was transporting part of the daily $200 million in stones entering and exiting the country for the Antwerp World Diamond Center. While most of the details have yet to be released, the sheer speed at which this heist was executed tells us a few things. First, the thieves may have had help from an employee or former employee. Second, there was significant knowledge of the diamond's daily flight schedule. And finally, the loaded cargo was insufficiently protected for the window of time in which it took for the passengers to load the plane.

While we have no doubt that the authorities will eventually catch the perpetrators and am thankful that no one was hurt in such a brazen escapade, it's important to learn from such an extreme example of theft while it is a topic of conversation. After all, it's the extreme for which we must always prepare. First, the questions: Were security cameras in place and operational? Were background checks performed on every employee and security guard? Were they issued firearms? Was any sensitive information leaked from the Antwerp World Diamond Center? Until more information is released, we are only able to learn from the obvious. 

The fact that such sensitive cargo was placed on a passenger plane is not a new concept; however, it should be noted that anyone with Internet access had the ability to at least narrow down the flights at which to focus their efforts. With a simple piece of inside information, reducing a handful of flights down to one becomes very easy. A simple change of this regularity may have averted such a disaster. In this case, occasionally using a flight with a layover in another airport, utilizing an armored car or even smaller shipments may have been just the thing to keep a would-be thief from executing such a flawless maneuver. While it may cost a bit more, the breaking of habits could have been the ounce of prevention for the pound of cure. Every day we engage in habits. Habits that can be learned and ultimately exploited. 

The 3 minutes that the diamonds were left unprotected was all it took for them to be stolen. What could feasibily be taken from your company in that time? Is there a schedule that a person could access that would clue them into a window of opportunity? Think about the most extreme situation that could happen... Helicopters lowering criminals... Escapes by jet boat. In this particular scenario, (did we mention $200 MILLION IN DIAMONDS BEING TRANSPORTED A DAY) one might be inclined to think that this was not a what-if situation but rather just a question of when. So don't let your business become the victim of the next "Italian Job"

Read more about the $50 million heist here - http://www.cnn.com/2013/02/19/world/europe/belgium-diamond-heist/index.html

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