Banks must spend to save on security
Having taken a knock to their collective reputation in recent years, banks can ill-afford the repercussions of a security breach. Against a backdrop of aging physical security systems and restrictive maintenance budgets, how can banks effectively negate the risk when it comes to security?
Banks have struggled with their public image for some time now; the last thing any financial institution needs is to deal with the fallout of a break-in.
Spending on bank security is key
While being secure is a fundamental and essential function of a financial building, many banks are unable to afford a complete overhaul of their security system. Further, the aging, segregated physical security systems that are in place expend a high portion of maintenance budgets and could leave a building vulnerable to the more modern methods of attack.
It is essential, though, that a banking building finds a solution to this catch-22; a security breach could not only lead to a loss of money, equipment and sensitive data, but could also cost them more indirectly, in damage to the company’s reputation and brand.
At the same time, it is essential to prioritise continued day-to-day operations of the building. An industry driven by customer satisfaction targets with a 24/7 nature can little afford to shut down for a number of hours, at any time of day, for any such improvement work to its security system. A drop in service is neither tolerated nor cheap.
Under lock and key
When looking to upgrade the security of a whole building, in particular when there is a tight budget, the first step is to look at the absolute fundamentals of the system; the lock and key. Any system, whether being installed on a new build or providing an update to an existing system, is built on the foundations of a reliable mechanical lock and key. Without that, a system is vulnerable to intrusion.
While a complete security system can often be too costly, by addressing the most fundamental elements in the system, a security upgrade can become more realistic, providing a cost-effective security solution for retail banks, as well as their headquarters or corporate office space.
As well as offering a cost-efficient upgrade to security, systems like this have been developed to be quick and easy to install – more agreeable to the day-to-day operations of the building. Operations can continue as normal while the system is integrated, with no loss of trading or damage to customer opinion of service.
Sophisticated bank security
Whilst a high security cylinder is still a core component, it can now incorporate sophisticated technology. With the functionality to provide ‘live’ wireless access permissions and denials from a local or remote site, the traditional mechanical cylinder can now benefit a building both in convenience and stringent integrated mechanical and electronic credential security; in the name of convenience, a person can quickly and efficiently be granted temporary controlled access to sensitive areas, and in the name of security, an intruder’s method of access can quickly be shut down remotely.
Bringing many of the benefits of an entire access control suite, a system such as this can also provide audit trails, documenting movements around a building and its segregated areas, providing both ‘live’ and ongoing monitoring of access.
Spending on bank security for the future
It is crucial not only to look at the immediate capital cost and installation time of any such upgrade, but to look at its performance in the future. A system such as this, where it is possible to ‘learn’ keys in and out of the system, means that if a key is compromised, should it be lost or stolen, it does not compromise the integrity of the entire system. Rather, you can remove the key from the system to eliminate any risk of unwarranted access. With this flexibility affording credibility throughout the lifetime of a security system, there will be low costs on replacement or repairs in the medium to long term.
The finance sector must spend to save – presenting somewhat of a dilemma at a time of increased scrutiny on how banks are managed and how they perform. This expenditure can easily be justified by looking at its benefits in the future; by building a flexible and integrated security infrastructure now, it facilitates a more secure, manageable and cost efficient banking service in the future.
Furthermore, in integrating newer technology to existing systems, this approach allows for growth as new technologies develop, and as new threats and methods of attack emerge. These flexible access control solutions allow a security infrastructure to grow and change in response to the most current and up-to-date security industry issues.
ASSA ABLOY Security Solutions