Monitoring and restricting access to your company’s sites is essential for protecting your employees, data, and assets.
Known as physical access management, this type of security refers to the practices and technologies used to control access to physical spaces, such as buildings, rooms, and other secure areas. This is accomplished through physical elements, such as automatic locking systems and employee education.
Here are some key considerations to help improve workplace physical access management.
Conduct A Risk Assessment
Conducting a comprehensive risk assessment is an essential step in improving physical access management. The process involves identifying and evaluating potential risks to the organization, including those related to physical security.
Consider hiring a security consultant to help identify any potential risk areas or vulnerabilities, the likelihood of each security risk, and outline solutions specific to your industry and structure.
Implement Layered Security Controls
Physical access management requires a multi-faceted approach. It’s not enough to add a few cameras and a self-locking door to reception; having layered security controls is essential for security.
The goal of layered security is to create multiple barriers that an attacker must overcome to gain access to a sensitive area or asset. This can include a combination of physical controls, such as fences, locks, and security cameras, as well as technological controls, such as access control systems and intrusion detection sensors.
Automation and centralization also play a pivotal role in layered security. Manually logging in and movement tracking increases the margin for error. According to Genetec, this ultimately leads to inefficiencies and a significant risk to your security.
Adopt A Data-driven Approach
Adopting a data-driven approach to physical access management involves using data and analytics to identify patterns, detect anomalies, and make informed decisions about security measures.
For example, you can use access control data to identify areas where security breaches are most likely to occur and allocate resources accordingly. Alternatively, video analytics can detect unusual behavior or identify potential security threats.
By leveraging data and analytics, organizations can gain a more comprehensive understanding of their physical security risks and make more effective decisions about mitigating them.
This mindset also helps encourage continuous monitoring and adaptation over time.
Develop Policies And Procedures
Creating policies and procedures add a layer of liability protection to a business, and helps enforce compliance. These policies and procedures should cover access control, visitor management, and incident response protocols.
It’s important to note the intersection of physical security and cybersecurity, particularly in cases concerning physical access to critical infrastructure, such as servers.
In these cases, policies should clearly outline who is authorized to access the servers and under what conditions, and physical controls should be put in place to restrict access. By establishing clear policies and procedures, organizations can better protect themselves against both physical and cyber threats.
Educate And Empower Employees
Security procedures and physical access management policies should be a part of new hire onboarding. However, it’s also important to revisit this information regularly.
Human error accounts for more than half of security breaches. Ensuring employees understand the risks and the consequences of non-compliance is essential for keeping your business secure.
Physical access management requires a combination of technology and education to be effective. Consider these key elements and steps when enhancing physical security at your workplace.