The enactment of California SB 553, which takes effect July 1, 2024, creates the first general industry workplace violence prevention safety requirements in the United States. California SB 553 requires California employers to develop their own workplace violence prevention plans as part of their Cal/OSHA Injury and Illness Prevention Plans or as a standalone Violence in the Workplace Prevention Program. Businesses must begin complying with the law on July 1, 2024.
Most organizations have either a partial Workplace Violence Prevention Program or an Injury and Illness Prevention Plan (IIPP) in place as required for all organizations under OSHA’s jurisdiction. OSHA, however, does not have specific requirements for a Workplace Violence Prevention program.
Many US organizations conduct business in California and must comply with this requirement. As an industry best practice and to ensure compliance, organizations should consider rolling out the plan to their entire organization, not just for their California-based operations. So goes California, the rest of the states have a strong tendency to follow suit in due time.
To ascertain the current state of your program, your organization must conduct a program assessment to develop a strategic plan to ensure compliance with California SB 553. Key provisions of this would include:
Reviewing existing HR, Security, Workplace, Business Continuity, and Injury Illness program policies, procedures, and business processes that have a nexus to the California SB 553 requirement.
California SB 553 minimum requirements to be assessed, to the extent they are available, include: 1. Program roles and responsibilities 2. Identification of workplace hazards 3. Reporting methods without fear of reprisal 4. Remediation of workplace incidents and hazards 5. Training 6. Employee communications 7. Plan compliance 8. Emergency Response 9. Post-incident response and investigation 10. Recordkeeping
The uniqueness of your organization should be addressed through the program assessment findings. Once your organization identifies the gap between the current state of your program and California SB 553 compliance items, you can work on addressing the items you may be deficient in. This phase of the endeavor will be more technical in defining the elements and recording them in a formal program document.
Should you require outside assistance in addressing your California SB 553 program compliance, please do reach out to us to begin a discussion on how Premier Risk Solutions can help.
With increased cyberattacks on organizations of all sizes, digital risk detection is of paramount importance. What is digital risk detection? Digital risk detection is the process of identifying and assessing the threats that organizations face in their digital environments. It’s the application of a tool or tools to access information on the social, surface, deep, and dark web. It’s seeking out exposures, data breach indicators, threats of violence, or otherwise reputationally damaging content to a brand or an individual’s (typically an executive’s) integrity. Keeping the information funnel succinct with relevant content across so many outlets can be a daunting task, but there are tools available in the marketplace like Media Sonar that aid in filtering the information available into one manageable ecosystem.
In 2023 and beyond, organizations can expect to see the following trends in digital risk detection:
Increased use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML): AI and ML can be used to analyze large volumes of data to identify patterns and anomalies that may indicate a threat. This can help organizations to detect threats more quickly and accurately than traditional methods.
Greater focus on insider threats:** Insider threats are threats that come from within an organization, such as from employees, contractors, or suppliers. Insider threats can be particularly difficult to detect, as they may have access to sensitive data and systems. Organizations will need to implement a variety of measures to mitigate insider threats, including digital risk detection tools.
More sophisticated attacks:** Cybercriminals are constantly developing new and more sophisticated attacks. This means that organizations will need to have a layered approach to digital risk detection, using a variety of tools and techniques to detect and respond to threats.
Here are some tips for organizations to improve their digital risk detection capabilities:
Implement a variety of detection tools and techniques. This could include AI/ML-based tools, user behavior analytics (UBA), security information and event management (SIEM) systems, and vulnerability scanners.
Monitor your digital environment continuously. This includes monitoring your networks, systems, applications, and data.
Have a plan in place to respond to threats. Once a threat is detected, you need to have a plan in place to investigate the threat and take appropriate action.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Act of 1970 outlines the duty of care an employer has for keeping a workplace “free of recognized hazards” that could lead to physical harm to a person or persons. This extends to business travel as well. This means an organization must act in a prudent manner to recognize hazards (i.e. be proactive in doing so). Each organization should start with a digital risk assessment to identify its threats and vulnerabilities in order to begin mitigation strategies on how to best tackle the situation presented. Every organization will be unique in its needs due to company culture and risk appetite as well as available resources (capital or otherwise).
While there are a variety of ways to mine information on the web, if you are able to automate searches to collate those into one ecosystem and organize the results in a custom manner germane to your organizational interests how much time would you save your team and efficiency would you create for your operation? Digital risk detection is an essential part of any cybersecurity strategy. By implementing a robust digital risk detection program, organizations can protect themselves from a wide range of threats and reduce the likelihood of a successful cyberattack.
Watch this 2-minute video put together by Media Sonar that discusses’ how their tool functions within this topical matter. Please reach out to the management team at Premier Risk Solutions should you like to discuss your digital risk detection program needs!
In today’s digital age, organizations face an ever-increasing threat of cyberattacks and data breaches. While investing in robust security measures is crucial, creating a culture of security within the workplace is equally important. By fostering a security-conscious environment, companies can empower their employees to become the first line of defense against all threats. In this article, we will explore practical steps and strategies to cultivate a culture of security, emphasizing the role of leadership, employee awareness and training, and the implementation of best practices throughout the organization.
1. Leadership’s Commitment:
Creating a culture of security starts at the top. Leaders must champion the importance of security and set an example for others to follow. By actively demonstrating their commitment to security, leaders can establish trust and motivate employees to prioritize it. They should communicate the significance of security measures, allocate resources appropriately, and foster a sense of shared responsibility throughout the organization.
2. Employee Awareness and Training:
Educating employees about potential threats and providing comprehensive training is paramount to building a security-focused culture. This includes teaching them about common cyber risks, phishing attacks, password best practices, and the importance of data privacy. Regular training sessions, workshops, and simulated phishing exercises can enhance awareness and help employees develop the skills needed to identify and mitigate security threats effectively. Additionally teaching staff about common physical risks such as piggybacking, potential consequences of doors left ajar, and general situational awareness best practices would arm the organization with a team of security and safety-conscious personnel.
3. Clear Security Policies and Procedures:
Developing clear and concise security policies and procedures is essential for creating a culture of security. These policies should address areas such as data handling, access controls, incident response, and acceptable use of technology resources. It is crucial to communicate these policies effectively to all employees, ensuring they understand their roles and responsibilities in safeguarding company data and systems. Good physical security plays its part in the protection of the data and systems by creating the outlying barriers to detect, deter, delay, and ideally displace any attempted criminal element.
4. Encouraging Reporting and Collaboration:
To foster a culture of security, organizations should encourage employees to report any suspicious activities promptly. Implementing an anonymous reporting mechanism can help alleviate concerns about retaliation. Additionally, fostering collaboration among team members, departments, and security professionals can promote a collective effort to identify and address security vulnerabilities effectively.
5. Regular Security Audits and Assessments:
Conducting regular security audits and assessments (penetration tests) is essential for maintaining a secure workplace. These evaluations can help identify vulnerabilities, address potential weaknesses, and ensure that security measures are up to date. By involving employees in these processes, organizations demonstrate their commitment to continuous improvement and provide opportunities for input and suggestions.
6. Recognize and Reward Security Consciousness:
Acknowledging and rewarding employees who exhibit exemplary security consciousness can reinforce the desired behaviors and encourage others to follow suit. Recognitions can range from simple shout-outs during team meetings to formal awards or incentives. By publicly appreciating employees’ efforts in maintaining a secure workplace, organizations reinforce the importance of security and motivate others to prioritize it.
In an era where data breaches and cyber threats continue to rise, organizations must prioritize creating a culture of security in the workplace. Through leadership commitment, employee awareness and training, clear policies, encouraging reporting, regular audits, and recognizing security-conscious behaviors, organizations can build a workforce that understands the significance of security and actively contributes to its maintenance. By investing in a security-conscious culture, companies can better protect their valuable assets, mitigate risks, and establish a strong defense against the evolving threat landscape.
Dubbed The Yellow Brick Road to Personal and Professional Safety and The Menu Approach to Human Behavioral Threat Assessment, PRS Advisory Board Member Rich Cinfio provides insight into the reasons why both programs have been in high demand and are very well-received in the private and public sectors. With the continuing escalation of acts of mass violence and workplace violence, Rich believes security professionals can best serve their organization and teammates by providing comfort during uncomfortable times.
This core, coupled with simple, yet effective, safety strategies can dramatically change how one views their ability to recognize unsafe situations and quickly respond to prevent harm. Alarmingly so, recent mass-casualty events continue to demonstrate that the first breakdown more often than not is the failure to recognize and report early indicators of pending violence along with the absence of a robust human behavioral threat assessment posture. Rich will shed light on the importance of threat assessment and offer strategies to consider when adopting a program in your organization.
Executive protection is a critical component of safeguarding high-profile individuals in an increasingly complex and interconnected world. However, the strategies and practices employed in executive protection can vary significantly across different regions. This article explores the global perspectives of executive protection, shedding light on the diverse approaches, cultural considerations, and unique challenges faced by security professionals in various parts of the world.
1. North America: Striking a Balance between Physical and Technological Security
In North America, executive protection emphasizes a comprehensive approach that combines physical security measures with advanced technological solutions. Close protection teams are trained to maintain a low profile while implementing cutting-edge surveillance systems and leveraging data-driven intelligence. This region’s focus on discreet protection strategies, effective communication, and threat analysis ensures optimal security outcomes for high-profile individuals.
2. Europe: Cultural Sensitivity and Multilingual Capabilities
Executive protection in Europe places great emphasis on cultural sensitivity and multilingual capabilities. Given the diverse range of languages and cultures within the continent, security professionals must navigate intricate social dynamics while maintaining the safety of their clients. European executive protection teams are renowned for their adaptability, cultural intelligence, and the ability to seamlessly integrate with different environments.
3. Middle East: Balancing Tradition with Modern Security Measures
The Middle East presents a unique landscape for executive protection due to the blend of traditional values and modern security requirements. Protection teams operating in this region must navigate cultural sensitivities, religious customs, and complex geopolitical dynamics. Executive protection in the Middle East involves a delicate balance between respecting local customs and implementing state-of-the-art security measures to ensure the safety of high-profile individuals.
4. Asia: Harmonizing Traditional Practices with Technological Advancements
Asia’s executive protection practices showcase a harmonious blend of traditional values and cutting-edge technology. Culturally rooted practices like the concept of personal honor and respect play a significant role in shaping protection strategies. Additionally, Asian executive protection teams adopt innovative approaches such as integrating artificial intelligence, biometric authentication, and drone surveillance to counter evolving security threats effectively.
5. Africa: Navigating Vast Landscapes and Socioeconomic Challenges
Executive protection in Africa presents unique challenges due to its vast landscapes, diverse cultures, and socioeconomic disparities. Security professionals operating in this region must adapt to the ever-changing environments, employ robust risk assessment methodologies, and collaborate with local stakeholders to mitigate threats effectively. Additionally, executive protection in Africa often involves addressing issues related to political instability, wildlife risks, and infrastructure limitations.
6. South America: Addressing Organized Crime and Kidnapping Risks
Executive protection in South America is marked by the need to address significant challenges related to organized crime and kidnapping risks. Security professionals operating in this region must be well-versed in counterintelligence strategies, threat assessment, and crisis management. The emphasis is on proactive measures, such as intelligence gathering, secure transportation, and secure facilities, to mitigate potential threats. Due to the dynamic nature of criminal activities, executive protection teams in South America must maintain close relationships with local law enforcement agencies and leverage their expertise to ensure the safety of their clients.
7. Oceania: Isolated Environments and Comprehensive Travel Security
Oceania’s executive protection practices are influenced by the vast and isolated environments found in the region. Security professionals here face unique challenges, including long-distance travel, remote locations, and unpredictable natural elements. To address these challenges, executive protection teams in Oceania prioritize comprehensive travel security, encompassing secure transportation arrangements, emergency response protocols, and collaboration with local authorities. Additionally, there is a strong focus on wilderness survival skills, as individuals may be exposed to the rugged terrains and natural hazards often found in this part of the world.
The global perspectives on executive protection demonstrate the diverse approaches and cultural considerations employed in safeguarding high-profile individuals across different regions. By understanding the nuances of each location, security professionals can adapt their strategies and tactics accordingly. Whether it is striking a balance between physical and technological security in North America, navigating cultural sensitivities in Europe, harmonizing traditional practices with modern advancements in Asia, or addressing organized crime risks in South America and travel security in Oceania, executive protection practitioners must continually evolve to meet the specific challenges of their respective regions. By embracing these global perspectives, the field of executive protection can continue to enhance the safety and security of high-profile individuals worldwide, regardless of the region they operate in. Ultimately, the collective knowledge and experiences from these varied perspectives contribute to the ongoing development of effective executive protection practices.