News Round Up

Top News in the Security and Risk Industry—March 2020

April 2, 2020 | 3 min read
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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.

The U.S Now Leads the World In Coronavirus Cases

From The New York Times: Scientists warned that the United States someday would become the country hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic. That moment arrived on Thursday, March 26. On that day, at least 81,321 people in the U.S. were known to have been infected with the coronavirus, including more than 1,000 deaths — more cases than China, Italy or any other country has seen, according to data gathered by The New York Times. The pandemic brought with it overloaded hospitals, shelter in place orders in many states, closed schools and many people who have been asked to work at home.

Our take: One of the most important things for people to realize right now is that this pandemic is going to last for a while. The best thing we can do as businesses and communities is limit the spread so healthcare organizations have the resources they need to take care of individuals. In public health, this is called “flattening the curve,” or keeping a lot of people from being infected at once so there’s not a big strain on the healthcare system. At this point we need to self-isolate, so fewer people are infected, and the virus spreads more slowly.

The Top 10 Employer Cybersecurity Concerns For Employees Regarding Remote Work

From Security Magazine: Employers are responding to COVID-19 by allowing, and even mandating remote working. Companies ranging from Amazon, Microsoft and Google to local design shops have asked employees to work from home. While increasingly common even before the virus, remote work brings its own unique set of cybersecurity challenges. Security Magazine lists ten of the most common pitfalls and the recommended solutions.

Our take: While remote work is important, it’s also vital that businesses make sure their data is secure. Workers, even those at home, should be working on secure devices, update their software, and be well trained when it comes to social engineering schemes like phishing.

Security Industry Groups Call For Security Services to Be Classified as “Essential” During Coronavirus Pandemic

From Security Today: Three organizations representing the security and life safety industries are circulating a letter to state public safety officials that calls on governments to classify electronic monitoring and other safety services as “essential” during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Security Industry Association (SIA), the Electronic Security Association (ESA) and The Monitoring Association (TMA) penned the form letter, which has gained more than 450 signatures from security company leaders.

Our take: Security is important during this time, especially as businesses close down and people work from home. However, it’s important that security services do their best to carry out their obligations without pulling all their employees out of isolation. There are plenty of technologies that allow security companies to carry out some of their duties remotely, for example. For guards that must absolutely be on site, security organizations should put proper protocols in place when it comes to sick time, cleaning and PPE.

In the U.S. Luxury Brands Board Up the Store

From The New York Times: Around the world, high-end retailers have been on lockdown.

In Europe, where millions of citizens have been living under national shutdowns for more than a week, stores in famous retail destinations have bolted their doors. In London, department stores like Harrods and Selfridges, and Bond Street boutiques like Burberry and Chopard, have cleared jewels and stock from plain sight. But in New York, where the cobbled streets of SoHo have shuddered to a standstill as state measures to slow the spread of the virus have taken hold, a number of elegant luxury boutiques, including Fendi, Celine and Chanel, did not just shutter storefronts this week; they had them boarded up with vast sheets of plywood, as if in anticipation of riots and civil disobedience.

Our take: We understand that businesses are concerned, but they may be missing the point — if their buildings are closed and unstaffed there may not be much the retailers can do. Fortunately, the article states that crime is also down right now. Everyone, including criminals, are staying indoors. If you’re a business owner and you’re worried about someone robbing your abandoned storefront or closed office, we have more advice for you here, but at this point the best thing you can do is stay home.

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