News Round Up

May 2023 - Android Security Guards, Drone Laws and Don’t Steal This Guy’s Hot Pockets

By Daniel Young | June 2, 2023 | 5 min read
Top News in the Security and Risk Industry May 2020

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.

ChatGPT-funded robot powered by AI is already working as a security guard in the US and Europe

From the Daily Mail: A humanoid robot is at work in the U.S., the CEO of a company funded by OpenAI, maker of ChatGPT has revealed. Bernt Bornich, CEO and founder of 1X, says his company’s humanoid EVE robot has been working since April this year - and that it is going ‘better than we thought.’ At present, the robot is working as a security guard at two industrial sites: unlike other security robots, it has a head, a face, two arms, and can navigate autonomously. Security guards control a fleet of patrolling EVE androids, which are made at two sites in Norway and Dallas, and if anything happens to one of the units, they can ‘step into’ the android’s body through virtual reality.

Our take: Robotic devices are an excellent force multiplier for your guard force. They take the place of human officers in dangerous situations, or in situations where the human might be doing repetitive or tedious tasks. They also allow humans to step in when there’s a problem that requires human attention. We love seeing new solutions adopted to improve security - as long as those devices are part of a security strategy that includes several different kinds of countermeasures.

Sex Traffickers Used America's Favorite Family Safety App To Control Victims

From Forbes: Earlier this year, an 18-year-old Amazon employee brought a tip to the San Diego Police Department: prior to working for the tech giant, she had been forced into sex work when she was 17. Text messages also showed her alleged trafficker forced her to do something else: install an app called Life360 on her phone. The app, which claims over 50 million active users across 195 countries, is among the most popular family safety apps in America. It lets parents and kids know where each family member is located at all times, displaying their live coordinates on a map. But, according to nine federal cases dating back to at least 2018, it has also been used by sexual predators to monitor and control their victims.

Our take: Sex trafficking has been on the rise lately, and it’s unsurprising that safety apps are being used against victims. Generally, if you can use a technology to keep your family safe, criminals can also use it as a tool for abuse. Companies that produce these apps should be working with law enforcement to make them safer. In the meantime, it’s a good idea for parents to check their kids’ apps; if you didn’t install tracking apps on their phone, it’s important to know who did.

High court to hear arguments on whether township drone violated homeowner's privacy

From Detroit News: The Michigan Supreme Court has agreed to weigh in on a dispute between a northern Michigan township and homeowners over the use of drones to survey and photograph the homeowners' property. The high court on Wednesday ordered oral arguments in a case over whether Long Lake Township officials violated homeowners’ Fourth Amendment rights when the township photographed their property to investigate zoning and nuisance complaints. The court also will examine, if the township did violate those rights, whether the photographs should be excluded from further zoning disciplinary action.

Our take: This case is a good example of the lack of rules and regulations around newer technology, such as drones. Drones occupy a gray area in the law at the moment; while they are a useful tool in security, they can also be used as a weapon, or to violate privacy. It will be interesting to see how the high court rules.

Man shot roommate after accusing him of eating the last Hot Pocket, police say

From the Associated Press: A man in Kentucky’s largest city is facing criminal charges after allegedly shooting his roommate during a dispute over a Hot Pocket, authorities say. Clifton Williams, 64, was arrested on assault charges after he accused his roommate of eating their last Hot Pocket and attacked him, shooting him in the buttocks, Louisville Metro Police Department officials told WLKY-TV. According to police, Williams started throwing tiles at the man after he realized the last microwaveable turnover was gone. He then shot him in the buttocks as he tried to escape, the TV station reported.

Our take: Funny though it seems when a person is shot in the buttocks, this situation could have gone very wrong. This is a good argument for securing guns, and also for making sure their owners are mentally stable. You can’t shoot someone in anger if you don’t have an easily accessible gun… even if they stole your last Hot Pocket.

May Top Security Grants

FY23 Homeland Security National Training Program (HSNTP) – Continuing Training Grants (CTG) - National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium (NCPC): The National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium (NCPC) provides funding to the eligible applicant to develop and deliver cybersecurity training solutions to address national preparedness gaps, map training to the core capabilities, and ensure training is available and accessible to a nationwide audience. Applicants can submit applications for this funding opportunity through FEMA Grants Outcomes (GO). Access the system at Grant closes: June 24, 2023

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.

FY2023 Rural and Small Department Violent Crime Reduction Program: OJP is committed to advancing work that promotes civil rights and racial equity, increases access to justice, supports crime victims and individuals impacted by the justice system, strengthens community safety and protects the public from crime and evolving threats, and builds trust between law enforcement and the community. With this solicitation, BJA seeks to support small and rural agencies in their efforts to combat violent crime. Grant closes: June 13

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