Business Continuity Plan for a Peace of Mind

Business security is incredibly important. From alarm systems to security cameras to employee security procedures, it’s vital that your company puts a significant focus on security. Not only do you need to protect yourself from potential issues, but showing that you have a visible security plan in place deters criminals and improves your company’s image with customers, partners and your staff. But what happens if a disaster occurs? If your company or any of your company’s assets are damage by a significant fire, flood, natural disaster, terrorist attack, act of vandalism or other disruptive event, how will you be able to continue business?

This is where a business continuity plan comes in. A business continuity plan (BCP) allows you to anticipate crisis situations and manage and facilitate a quick response when prevention or detection is not possible. In short, a BCP outlines how your business will continue to operate in an emergency situation. All aspects of your business should be considered when preparing a business continuity plan, including your supply chain, all critical infrastructure, your physical assets, your employees and any other business activities that are critical for day-to-day operation.

A key to a business continuity plan is a risk and vulnerability assessment. You need to understand exactly which issues pose a threat to your business. You also need to plan for how you can predict them, prepare for them and prevent them if possible. Failing to account for how your company handles threats will lead to unnecessary business costs and service disruption. For example, how would your company handle a potential fire in your main factory? If you do not have a plan to protect yourself against fires and a procedure for how to continue operating your company if and when a major fire strikes, your business will suffer. The same can be said for vandalism and other crimes. Is your company prepared for a riot or other large scale attack? What would you do if all of the computers in your office were stolen? How would you continue to work? If you have a business continuity plan for a) preventing such a theft in the first place and b) how to continue business operations if such a theft took place, you will be in a much better position than a company that does not have such plans.

Business security and business continuity plan often go hand-in-hand. If you are able to reduce the threats to your company by using security technology, you will be able to reduce the possibility of needing to take alternate action should a disaster strike. For example, if your company has adequate security protecting your business assets, you are less likely to be faced with a situation where you would need to operate your company without these assets. This is another reason why business security services are so important.

Strong business continuity plans should be updated and tested frequently to ensure that all procedures are up-to-date and that all staff understand what actions should be taken in an emergency. All types of threats need to be considered. It is important to completely analyze all potential issues that could occur, from the smallest and most unlikely to the more severe and more likely issues. The likelihood of a potential issue will depend on a number of factors. For example, a building being significantly damaged by an earthquake will be much more likely in some regions than in others.

Tips for Preparing Business Continuity Plan

When preparing a business continuity plan, you need to analyze all dependencies and interdependencies that your company may have. For example, an office in one location may depend on the technology, personnel and work of another office in a completely different part of the world. You will need to plan for how the first office will continue to function should something happen to the office that it depends on.

Your business should have alternate sites and IT back-ups that are located far away from the primary site. A large disaster such as an earthquake, civil unrest or a terrorist attack could shut down or damage offices that are located nearby. If your back-up location is situated in the same area as your primary location, both facilities could be unavailable in a disaster. Employee safety and security are of course incredibly important. This is not only true during a disaster or threat, but afterwards as well. Large fires, violence, terrorist attacks or natural disasters can be incredibly traumatic for everyone involved. Employee support and counselling services should be a part of your business continuity plan. Also, note that in a dangerous situation key personnel may be unavailable or difficult to reach. You need to plan for these situations. How will your business react if you cannot reach the company president or any of the executive staff? How will you ensure that everyone is safe once the emergency situation is over? Having a strong business continuity plan in place will reduce panic and worry while also limiting service disruptions.

Business continuity begins with security. Please contact SafeTech Alarm Systems for information on our business security services.

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FBI Warning on Hotel Wi-Fi

Hotel Wi-Fi is very convenient. When you’re traveling and need access to the Internet, it’s very easy to hop online quickly from your hotel room to check your email or monitor your social networks. You may even decide to pay a few bills while you’re there. Many business travelers complete a lot of work·from their hotel rooms using hotel Wi-Fi. However, these activities may not be completely safe.

Recently, the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), which is made up by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the National White Collar Crime Center and the Bureau of Justice Assistance, issued a statement regarding hotel Internet connections. The intelligence note, titled “Malware Installed on Travelers’ Laptops through Software Updates on Hotel Internet Connections” showed the dangers of public Wi-Fi.

“Recent analysis from the FBI and other government agencies demonstrates that malicious actors are targeting travelers abroad through pop-up windows while establishing an Internet connection in their hotel rooms” said the statement. “In these instances, the traveler was attempting to setup the hotel room Internet connection and was presented with a pop-up window notifying the user to update a widely-used software product. If the user clicked to accept and install the update, malicious software was installed on the laptop.”

Unfortunately you never know what to expect when you use public Internet. Therefore it is important that you never download or install anything while you are on the road. The IC3 statement advises users to take extra caution when using hotel Wi-Fi.

“The FBI also recommends that travellers perform software updates on laptops immediately before travelling, and that they download software updates directly from the software vendor’s Web site if updates are necessary while abroad”, it reads.

Never install anything from a public computer, even if the website states that you specifically need to install a certain program in order to connect. These programs could damage your computer or steal your personal information. To avoid getting yourself in trouble, verify the connection procedure with the hotel before you attempt to connect. Hotel staff will be able to fully explain what steps need to be taken in order to connect to the Internet. They will alert you of any pop-ups that may be present and confirm that you do not need to install any programs in order to connect. You should also verify the exact name of the Wi-Fi hotspot that is operated by the hotel. A common scam is for criminals to create similar hotspot names (such as “Free Hotel Internet” when the official hotspot name is·”Hotel Internet”, for example) in hopes that unknowing guests connect to them. Once you connect to this unofficial network, the criminals can then spy on your Internet activity without you knowing. Even if you successfully connect to a hotel Wi-Fi spot or any other public Internet connection, you should still be careful about your activities. You never know exactly how secure a public Internet connection really is, so exercise caution. Try not to transmit personal information such as banking details or passwords over public Wi-Fi.

Property Security Tips

People spend a lot of time and effort securing their homes. This makes sense. After all, your home is where your valuables are and where your family lives. However, protecting only your actual home itself could mean that you are neglecting the rest of your property. Your doors, windows and the inside of your home obviously need protection, but so does your lawn, your garage and the surrounding area. A strong home security plan involves protecting your entire property, not just your actual house itself.

Criminals often scout out homes in advance to determine which properties are the best choices for a break in. If you fully protect your property and let criminals know that you care about home security, they will be much less likely to attempt to break in to your home. One way that you can scare burglars away is by letting them know that someone is at home and that the home is being regularly tended to. Maintaining your lawn, collecting your mail and any flyers that are left at your door, keeping a car in the driveway and paying attention to the general upkeep of your house will deter criminals. They would rather break into a home that is empty and ignored than one that is obviously cared for. If you are away from home for an extended period of time, consider hiring someone to maintain your home’s appearance. Most criminals do not want to risk breaking into an occupied house.

Criminals also hope to avoid being seen while they are committing crimes. You can make it more difficult for them to hide by trimming your bushes and trees, properly lighting your home and your property and removing any objects that may act as good hiding spots for burglars. Your driveway and the walkway to your house should be well-lit and unobstructed and the perimeter of your property should be properly lit. Motion-activated lights are a great idea for protecting your home.

It’s also important that you lock up your gates, fences and your garage at all times. Most people would never leave their home without locking the front door, but fewer people pay attention to the lock on the garage, for example. Securing your garage with strong locks and a high-quality door is important. In some homes you can access the house directly through the garage, so criminals often use that route to get inside. Even if that isn’t the case for your home, garages typically contain tools that make it easier to break into a house. If your garage is easy to break into, a burglar can enter your garage and steal a shovel, axe, ladder or other tool that will make it easier to break into your house. Garage security is incredibly important.

SafeTech Alarm Systems has been protecting people and property for more than 20 years. We understand the importance of blending a variety of different security technologies in various areas of your property to achieve total home security. Contact us for more information.

Violent Nanaimo Home Invasions

Nanaimo RCMP are investigating two violent home invasions that took place in the city. Police say the two attacks were targeted, but that they were unrelated. Four people were attacked in the home invasions. No one was seriously injured in either attack.

“Often we will get a followup from a prior incident,”said Nanaimo RCMP spokesman Const. Gary O’Brien. “In this particular case, our investigators are 100% satisfied there is no correlation [between the two home invasions.]”

In the first incident, four men forced their way into a home with baseball bats and attacked two of the people who were living there. Both victims were male and they suffered extensive bruising. Two women and a young girl were also inside the home, but they were left alone.

In the second home invasion, three men broke into a home and attacked the woman and the man living there with brass knuckles. The occupants also claim the attackers used threats of a firearm in the attack, but no such weapons were found. The attackers stole computer equipment, a mobile phone and an unknown amount of cash from the home before leaving. Police say this attack may have been related to drugs.

Several of the attackers in the first home invasion have been identified and two arrests have been made on charges of assault with a weapon and break and enter. In the second attack, one of the men has been identified and police have requested a warrant for his arrest.

While these particular cases were targeted, random home invasions do sometimes occur. A home invasion is an incredibly terrifying experience. It is important to secure your home as best as possible in order to keep you and your family safe. Strong doors, door frames and dead bolt locks as a necessity in home security. You need to ensure that it will not be easy to forcefully enter your home. You may also be interested in window bars which prevent criminals from entering your home through the window. If you’re planning on installing window bars in any sleeping areas, you need to ensure that they can quickly and easily be removed from the inside. Windows can be an important exit point in an emergency, so you need to take care and make sure that you don’t become trapped inside by the bars.

For more information on how you can protect your home, your family and your property, please contact us today or visit our website.