By Systems Solutions Group / Security Systems News / 0 Comments

By: Security Systems News

12/05/2019

SSN Staff

LAKE FOREST, Calif.—National Monitoring Center (NMC) announced the recent hiring of Mark Matlock as vice president of sales, responsible for nurturing key relationships within the industry and driving NMC’s growth.
“We are very pleased to welcome Mark to the team,” NMC President Woodie Andrawos said in the announcement. “He comes to NMC with extensive industry experience having served in leadership roles in wholesale monitoring for over 20 years.”
Demonstrating his deep knowledge and commitment to independent alarm dealers, Matlock has served within the industry for many years, including having served on all three local alarm association boards in the state of Texas. He additionally served as president of the South Texas Alarm Association in San Antonio and as President of the Houston Burglar & Fire Alarm Association from 1999 to 2001, among many other industry accomplishments.
“I am honored to be with NMC whose history, growth trajectory, and reputation for quality service in support of its dealers speaks for itself,” said Matlock. “I look forward to serving the company’s contract monitoring needs and to contributing to dealer growth.”
NMC continues to invest heavily in technology, process and people that align with its mission to be the partner of choice for independent alarm dealers, the company said, noting that the recent hire of Matlock reaffirms this commitment.
“Building a world-class team able to strengthen and support our clients is a top priority for us,” said Andrawos. “Mark is a true professional, highly-respected in our industry and is committed to the relentless pursuit of dealers’ success.” National Monitoring Center (NMC), a Netwatch Group Company, is a third-party monitoring company in the U.S. with monitoring centers in Calif. and Texas.


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By: Security Systems News

Senior technology consultant with Burns & McDonnell

12/04/2019

Paul Ragusa

09.GN_.TerryHarless copy.jpg

Security Systems News caught up with Terry Harless, senior technology consultant with Burns & McDonnell, who talked about his consulting career, the advancement of ground-based radar (GBR) technology and the future for security, in general.
What’s your role at the company?
I have several roles within the company including mentoring physical security specialists, performing electronic security design, performing quality control for security design and assessment projects, and assist our business developer with marketing efforts. What kinds of systems do you design/specify and what services does the company provide?
On a typical project we would design video surveillance, access control and intrusion detection systems. When we initially assess the site or building, we are also looking for other options, such as fencing, barriers and vegetation to assist with the security posture. We also include ground base radar systems, gunshot detection systems and/or drone (UAV) monitoring systems in our designs when appropriate.
Burns & McDonnell provides the following services for our clients: architecture, business consulting, commissioning, construction, engineering, operations & maintenance, program management, security consulting and technology consulting.
What vertical markets does the company specialize in? Any interesting projects that you can mention?
Burns & McDonnell is an employee-owned engineering/architecture/construction firm focused on the following vertical markets: aviation; chemicals, oil and gas; commercial, retail and institutional; environmental; government, military and municipal; manufacturing and industrial; power; telecommunications; transportation; water; and construction.
One of the projects that stands out that I can mention is a mixed-used development in Doha, Qatar. The development contained retail, office buildings, school and high-end townhomes and apartments, as well as a 5-star hotel, museum and cultural center. One of the challenges that occurred during the design of the project is integrating the security system with a commercial grade smart home system. At the time of the design, there were no off-the-shelf solutions so we had to bring together a couple manufacturers to program a solution that fit the customer’s need.
How did you get started in security and designing/specifying?
I applied for a drafting job at a consulting firm (Latta Technical Services) that primarily designs electronic security for justice facilities (prisons, jails, courthouses, for example). Once I developed a drafting manual for the company, I started to perform some design work. After a few site visits and security manufacturer presentations I was hooked. Each project is different and there is an art to assist architects during the preliminary design to build security envelopes so access-controlled doors can be minimized.
Can you talk about what new or emerging technologies you are seeing or specifying today?
Ground based radar (GBR) is a product we have been researching and recommending for applicable projects for a few years now. The advancement in GBR detection technology and affordability has made GBR a major player in the analytics game. Integrated with low light and/or thermal cameras allow security operators to quickly determine if a moving object is a person posing threat or an animal wondering around in a field.
Another technology that I see becoming a norm in the next few years is UAV monitoring systems. Currently the FAA does not allow non-federal government entities to defend against drones, but there are technologies you can use to currently monitor and, in the future, use to defend against drones if the law is ever adjusted. The electric utilities sector is looking at this technology to monitor drones near substations and/or transmission lines.
What is your view on the industry moving forward?
I think security design professionals need to be more aware of non-electronic security options like CPTED to use when mitigating vulnerabilities. It appears most of us always seems to be interested in the ‘bleeding edge’ solution when there could be a thorny bush or native landscaping stone available to serve the same purpose. IP based video surveillance systems and other technology doesn’t have the longevity as analog systems from the past, so ongoing maintenance fees are going to tremendously affect clients in the future.
There are a lot of cool new devices out there today, but we need to be cognizant of how much it costs to keep them performing optimally. Otherwise, we will have a bunch of cool little gadgets hanging off walls/poles that don’t serve a purpose anymore because the operators are growing tired of all the false alarms.
Specifically Speaking features Q-and-A with a security consultant provided to SSN by SecuritySpecifiers.


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By Systems Solutions Group / Science Daily / 0 Comments

By: Science Daily

The health impacts of radio-frequency radiation (RFR) are still inconclusive, but the data to date warrants more caution in placing cell towers. An engineering team considers the current understanding of health impacts and possible solutions, which indicate a 500-meter (one third of a mile) buffer around schools and hospitals may help reduce risk for vulnerable populations.

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By: Security Systems News

12/02/2019

Max Emelianov

A merger or acquisition is extremely sensitive. You’re looking at millions of dollars potentially changing hands, to say nothing of all the sensitive data and intellectual property. It should go without saying that security should be your number one priority; yet for some reason, many businesses seem to ignore it entirely.  
An organization in talks to acquire a startup is one-upped by a competitor that somehow knew the exact value of their offer. 
Identified as a redundancy, a disgruntled staffer makes off with their new parent company’s intellectual property. 
Immediately after merging with a partner, a company suffers a data breach, the result of a major security flaw in the other organization’s infrastructure.
These are all examples which can, and often do, happen as a result of poor security during the acquisition process. The good news is that with proper due diligence, these problems can be avoided by taking the following preventative measures. 
Document control and file tracking. Most often, the exchange of information during the merger and acquisition process is handled through the use of a secure data room. Unfortunately, this tactic falls apart the moment a deal is finalized. 
In a merger between two larger organizations, there’s a massive volume of information to sift through — Gigabytes, perhaps even Terabytes of files pertaining to everything from payroll information to intellectual property to customer data. Without an efficient means of categorizing, consolidating and tracking all that data, it’s incredibly easy for a leak to happen, either accidentally or intentionally.
A content collaboration platform, such as those covered by Gartner’s Magic Quadrant, is necessary. Not only will it allow you to effectively and efficiently protect your data throughout the merger and acquisition process, but it will also less worry about malicious insiders or simply losing track of important files. 
Cybersecurity testing. Presumably, your business takes security quite seriously. But what about the organization you’re looking to merge with or acquire? What does their network look like and what sort of controls do they have in place to prevent the misuse of systems and data? 
Like it or not, once the deal is finalized, their security problems become your security problems. For that reason, it’s important to bring in a third-party analyst to evaluate all aspects of a prospect’s cyber risk environment. You need to understand the business risk profile, weak points, IT infrastructure and business processes. 
An objective evaluation of both your security posture and that of your target is necessary before moving forward with any sort of deal. Ideally, in the analysis, you’ll want to leverage a security framework, such as the one by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). 
Once you’ve completed your inventory of their IT systems and approach to security, be sure to compare it with their own documentation. If things don’t match up, that could be a sign of negligence on their part. 
Existing incidents and issues. Last but certainly not least, what sort of cyber liabilities are you taking on with this merger or acquisition? Are there any ongoing legal problems related to cybersecurity? Any recent data breaches or cyber incidents? 
Once again, their problems will become your problems. So, it’s up to you to decide if the risks outweigh the gains of a partnership. 
Controlling your interests
Even without matters of IT and cybersecurity, mergers and acquisitions are complicated, logistically challenging affairs. Because we live in an increasingly digital world, security is no longer something that can be ignored, either before and after a deal is complete.
Max Emelianov started HostForWeb in 2001. In his role as HostForWeb’s CEO, he focuses on teamwork and providing the best support for his customers while delivering cutting-edge web hosting services. 


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