Oh, how things have changed. Mere months ago, protective security entailed managing all physical security incidents, threats, and operations – reducing risks to keep people and physical assets safe.
Now, in the midst of an ongoing pandemic, organisations have had to redefine the mission of their physical security teams in an effort to ensure that employees and customers avoid likely health threats, specifically community spread of COVID-19.
The near-unprecedented wave of cyberattacks on corporate and governmental systems has been an underreported story coming out of the COVID-19 crisis, with alarming business continuity implications for organisations still battling the fallout from the pandemic.
Already in March of this year, online threats had risen by as much as six times their February levels. Hacking and phishing attempts alone were up 37 percent month on month.
The surge would only accelerate. By June, reporting would find a staggering 400 percent increase in cyberattacks.
With the double-whammy of COVID-19 and a hyper-active weather season, volunteer disaster relief agencies already have enough on their plate. But the rapid increase in the number and severity of disasters is causing a worrying new phenomenon in volunteer management.
That trend is disaster fatigue. What is it, and how to plan for it this coming severe weather season?
PCBUs (Persons Conducting a Business or Undertaking) in the Australian state of New South Wales woke up this month to a more aggressive safety compliance regime.
Amendments to pre-existing safety law now put employers who fail to meet health and safety obligations on the hook for stiff new penalties should their negligence lead to a worker dying on the job. Those penalties include up to 25 years in prison for individual actors. Add to that, millions in fines for companies.
In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, business continuity plans (BCPs), processes, and programs have never been in greater demand. But we’ve been here before.
Both the 11 September 2001 terror attacks and late 2000’s financial crisis spurred similar upticks in the popularity of business continuity management systems (BCMS). And yet, by the time COVID-19 came along, an alarming number of companies were unprepared.
Why didn’t business continuity management take off before; and how can you build a sustainable program today?
Ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements is critical to your client’s business. But crisis and business continuity planning – often mandated by law – shouldn’t be a box-ticking exercise. Unfortunately, too many of your clients fall into the trap. What risks do they face treating crisis preparedness as a compliance-first practice?
First things first: regulatory mandates following crises are ubiquitous – that’s been the case far before the onset of the COVID-19 crisis. In the U.S., for instance, employers with more than ten workers must have written emergency action plans that specify what workers and others at the workplace should do in the event of an emergency.
Even before the COVID-19 crisis struck, the consensus was that protective security technologies still had a long way to go to ensure maximal security, in a timely manner, for people and physical assets.
The reason? Hardware-intensive physical security management equipment had proven unable to keep up with the physical security threat as it had evolved.
Now, that threat is even more mobile, rendering traditional equipment even less effective. Why?
Mere days into the hurricane season, the Atlantic basin is already experiencing its third named storm. Meanwhile, China, faced with flooding in its south and east, is upping flood defense emergency response to level III. Western Australia, for its part, is less than a month removed from a “once-in-a-decade storm,” so dubbed by the state’s acting commissioner of Fire and Emergency Services.
For many organizations whose physical operations were forced to close due to COVID-19-induced lockdowns, reopening day is coming soon. Indeed, employers are busy planning for a safe reopening as the day approaches.
While planning matters, it’s the quality of those plans that will determine whether a safe reopening is possible. And as it turns out, too many organizations follow one-size-fits-all strategies that can actually compromise the safety of returning employees, imperiling business recovery from the crisis. How, exactly?
The scale of the COVID-19 disruption to what had long been normal working arrangements has been unprecedented. Take remote work: an early April 2020 MIT survey revealed that nearly a third of all workers in the U.S. who had been employed the month before were working from home, up from five percent in 2017.