There’s a lot going on in the world of physical risk and vulnerability; it’s nearly impossible to keep up with the latest news and developments. We’ll keep you informed with the best content to keep your organization safe and secure. Check out the top news and headlines from the past month.
From YouTube: Robotic Assistance Devices, Inc. (RAD),’s quadruped robot, the RADDOG, appeared in FOX’s reality series, “Stars on Mars” for the first time on June 19. The dog was named Marisha in honor of the red planet, and is the crew’s emotional support dog. Marisha’s first episode saw her being walked by cyclist Lance Armstong and singer Tinashe, and refusing to fetch a ball, just like a real dog.
Our take: It’s incredible to see an innovation like the RADDOG 2s units be introduced to the general public in such a fun and friendly way. It’s a great way to normalize security robots, and get the public excited about the possibilities of security technology.
From ABC7: Sheriff's deputies in Compton have returned to their patrol duties Monday following a chaotic weekend that involved a series of street takeovers and a mob of looters that left a trail of destruction at local stores. Video captured a wild scene at an Arco gas station near Alondra Boulevard and Central Avenue early Sunday morning where a large group was caught on video bum-rushing an Arco gas station and stealing thousands of dollars' worth of merchandise, all while the clerk on duty hid inside. Residents of Compton say the street takeovers have become a frequent problem in the area in which the looting took place.
Our take: Looting is getting out of control in California and all over the country. It’s getting harder and harder for businesses to protect themselves; retailers have been locking up merchandise to prevent theft, but looters have been striking regardless to steal furniture and fixtures. Recent news stories have shown us that even fast food restaurants aren’t safe from looting. In California particularly, increased looting is the result of a law change reducing penalties for thefts under $950. To get looting under control, the state will have to re-impose penalties on smaller thefts.
From the Associated Press: Police hunted down a velociraptor that was stolen from outside a South Dakota arts and science center. Sioux Falls police said on June 16 that a security officer spotted three people carrying the statue away from the Washington Pavilion and called police just after midnight. Surveillance video then helped officers track the statue to a nearby apartment, where the velociraptor was sitting just inside. Police detained the three suspects on charges of grand theft. Benson said one was 18, another 19 and the third a juvenile. The statue was not damaged.
Our take: This is a perfect example of how a well-trained security officer and surveillance footage can be used to quickly track down thieves. We commend the officer for their quick thinking and the police for recovering the stature. Hopefully the museum will find a way to better secure the velociraptor in the future. As for the thieves, to steal a line from Jurassic Park: they appeared to be “ so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should.”
From Gizmodo: Amazon Web Services, the ubiquitous cloud computing provider that is responsible for supporting large portions of the internet, endured a pretty bad meltdown Tuesday, June 13. The AWS outage first gained attention on Tuesday afternoon, when it became apparent that all sorts of sites weren’t working exactly the way they should. Details about the outage were quickly made available by Amazon in a public-facing dashboard, showing that the outage was impacting the company’s US-East-1 cloud region. Companies from all walks of life—everything from the Associated Press to McDonald’s to Reddit—suffered massive digital headaches for a stretch of several hours.
Our take: When a company as big as Amazon Web Services has an outage, the results are far-reaching. This outage disrupted our economy, and although AWS has released some information, we don’t know exactly what caused the outage. We’re waiting on the report. We all deserve to know what happened.
June Top Security Grants
FEMAs Regional Catastrophic Preparedness Grant Program (RCPGP): The Regional Catastrophic Preparedness Grant Program (RCPGP) provides funding to close known capability gaps, encourages innovative regional solutions to issues related to catastrophic incidents, and builds on existing regional preparedness efforts. The purpose of the RCPGP is to build regional capacity to manage catastrophic incidents by improving and expanding collaboration for catastrophic incident preparedness. Grants close: July 24, 2023.
FEMA’s Dam Safety Program: The National Dam Safety Program’s mission is to reduce risks to lives, property, and the environment from dam failure by guiding public policy and leveraging industry best practices across the dam safety community. The National Dam Safety Program supports FEMA Strategic Goal 1: Build a Culture of Preparedness and FEMA Strategic Goal 2: Ready the National for Catastrophic Disasters. Grant closes: July 27
Homeland Security’s Continuing Training Grants: Through the Continuing Training Grants (CTG) program, the Department of Homeland Security Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 Homeland Security National Training Program (HSNTP) plays an important role in the National Preparedness System. The CTG program supports building, sustaining, and delivering core capabilities through the development and delivery of training to achieve the National Preparedness Goal (the Goal), which is “a secure and resilient nation with the capabilities required across the whole community to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from the threats and hazards that pose the greatest risk”. Specifically, the CTG program provides funding for eligible applicants to support and target training solutions for state, local, tribal, and territorial (SLTT) partners, supporting the objective of the National Preparedness System to facilitate an integrated, whole community, risk-informed, capabilities-based approach to preparedness. Grants close: August 9, 2023