Do you know if your business is at risk of theft or other damage?
In a recent survey of business owners, 35.2 percent of those who responded had experienced a risk incident.
You may be wondering how a business owner can know if their building is vulnerable. If so, a security audit may be right for you.
We explain what a security audit is, why they are important for your business, and give the best security solutions in this guide.
What Is a Security Audit?
Security audits look for threats or vulnerabilities that might disrupt normal business operations.
These might include theft, damages to buildings or facilities, damage to property around the building, threats toward or assault of employees, or other risks to the building or employees.
There are two types of business security auditing:
An internal audit is completed by employees of an organization. The direction of an internal audit is determined by the company itself.
This type of audit can be completed more often because it is less costly. It costs more to bring in an outside auditor.
An external audit is a neutral approach. An outside security auditor detects risks to the business and its employees.
Depending on your state and the type of business you run, external audits may be required. These Federal Regulations ask for these before certifications can be granted. Check with the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) to determine this.
A licensed professional completes an external security audit.
They will cover security issues with you from several angles including:
This will include checking your physical locks to make sure they are all working. The auditor will test keys to determine durability and effectiveness.
The audit professional will also survey entrances and exits.
This includes both the building and the property.
Your audit professional will also check to see if the condition of your doors and door frames fits your desired level of security.
An examination should also be made of windows in your building and their locking ability.
When you request a security audit they will help you determine if your building complies with any local codes.
Your security auditor can help you determine any changes to make to bring your building or security protocols up to code if necessary.
Your security audit will take into account the area your business is located in when determining your security needs.
Lower security may be possible in lower populated areas. In areas with higher crime statistics, your security auditor may recommend higher levels of security.
Inside and Outside Security
Your security audit will include an assessment of vulnerabilities both within your building and on your property. This will help you to understand your building’s security from every angle, from locks to windows and beyond.
How Often Should You Run a Security Audit?
Because building safety and the security of employees it is critical in our world today, it is important to run security audits regularly.
There can be many things within your business other than employees to protect. Companies often need to store private client and employee data.
They may also keep product inventory, cash, company computers, and other electronics.
Security professionals recommend at least yearly security audits. If you can afford to have an audit more often, they recommend as often as quarterly.
Besides to yearly audits, business security systems can bring yearlong peace of mind to business owners and employees alike (internal).
Why Security Is More Important Than You Realize?
Theft and vandalism are some of the biggest concerns of business owners today. A security audit can help pinpoint weaknesses that leave your business vulnerable.
As much as business owners hope they can trust their employees, a security audit is also a good way to keep everyone in the organization accountable. It will help remind everyone of the security and oversight they are answerable to.
Another concern within organizations is employee assault. In fact, according to the National Safety Council, assault is the 5th main cause of work-related death.
This statistic alone should spur the need for physical security
Your security professional can help you develop a plan that will cut weak areas. They will help you and your employees feel safe and gain peace of mind.
Concerns a Security Audit Can Expose
A security audit can bring about many great results, but it can also expose many weaknesses such as:
Uncontrolled Access to the Building
Businesses must be aware of who is coming in and out of the building. They may also want to log when each person enters and exits.
Without this, criminals may come and go as they please. This puts any business at risk of theft and other crimes.
Need for Increased Employee Caution
Many times security audits show a need for increased employee training to help keep the company safe.
Employees may be unaware of procedures or have become lax on things like propping doors open.
Yet, these even simple breaches in security can leave businesses open to risk. Finding ways to train and encourage employees to embrace security can go a long way in lowering risk.
Absence of Security Follow-Up Policies
Many companies will conduct a security audit and make changes, but then do not follow up after this.
Businesses must create an ongoing security plan to include yearly reviews, or even more often than this.
This will allow them to have up-to-date security protocols. It will also help them to stay in front of their employees’ security needs, as well as the needs of their current location.
Businesses must also think ahead to keep in line with any local regulations they are required to meet.
Choosing the Right Security Solutions
To choose the best security system for your needs, there are several things to consider.
First, it’s important to know the overall goals you are looking to achieve with your security audit.
Are you looking to minimize theft? Control access points for employees?
Be thinking about not only your current goals but also your long-term security goals. How can the security features you put in place today be a stepping stone toward your future?
Make a list of your goals and discuss them with your security professional.
The next step is to determine your assets. You will need to determine the items that are most valuable to you to protect.
Your security auditor may ask you to think about any new assets that may require new security options. If you have thought this through ahead of time, your security audit will proceed much more smoothly.
Next, be clear about existing security issues. What have you found works well for your business currently? What isn’t working? Be prepared to share this information with your security audit professional. This will help them form a plan that works best for you.
Your next step is to be clear about your security threats.
Security threats differ depending on business type and product. Work with your security professional to help determine what types of threats may be most relevant to your business.
They will help you determine any access control issues that may be an issue for your building. These are vulnerable places where criminals may enter your building without your knowledge.
More Security Concerns to Consider
Another question to ask yourself is how willing you are to give up convenience for security.
Your security audit professional may offer you several options with differing levels of security.
You will need to choose a level that is right for your business security-wise. This may include the necessity of giving up the ease of doing things like propping doors or windows open.
This may not be the most popular option with everyone who works within your building.
It is important to think ahead about how you will handle any reluctance you are feeling. This way, you can project that confidence about working in a more secure environment in your workplace.
Discovering these key areas is an important part of business security. This is especially true in the digital age we live in, as date breaches often go hand-in-hand with physical break-ins.
Your security audit professional will help you determine what type of access control system is best. It may be possible to upgrade your current system.
Or they can show you new technology that might best protect your business.
You will want to choose an access control system that allows you to set zones within your building.
Your audit professional will help you determine permission levels for access zones within your business. They can also help you set permissions for each user and location if you have more than one building to consider.
Another consideration is employee training. Your security professional may install new security equipment based on the security audit.
It will be up to you to train employees on this equipment. Be prepared to decide who will learn and do training on all new security installations.
Reviewing Environmental Considerations
When thinking through the security of your business, it is important to consider the surrounding area as well. The landscaping chosen can be either a barrier or help with security.
Trees and bushes throughout the property need to be kept trimmed.
This is especially important near the entrance and exit areas of buildings. Business owners need to keep landscaping from blocking windows as well.
The less environmental clutter on your property, the better your line of sight will be. In turn, security risks will be lessened.
Another environmental consideration is lighting.
Well-lit sidewalks, parking lots, and ground can be a big obstacle for criminals. Keep the lights in your building on even after operating hours. This will deter thieves even if the building may be empty.
Considering Business Vehicle Security
An overlooked item in business security audits is vehicles.
If your business owns vehicles or includes delivery drivers, this may be important.
Depending on the security company, they may have an automotive locksmith. You can keep the locksmith on speed dial.
They may also have other vehicle security features available for your business.
Why Use Professional Locksmith Services
When taking the step to increase security it is important to consider all companies.
It will seem easiest to go with the lowest bidder. Yet, it is imperative to consider all aspects of your security solutions choice.
You want a locksmith that is certified and licensed. This may depend on the state you live in as not all states need certification and/or licensure. Request documentation to back up any claims made.
Certification and licensure should also be a good indicator of up-to-date training. Continuing education is usually a rule to keep licenses in good standing.
A reputable locksmith will also carry insurance. This is important should you run into issues of any kind during your security audit.
They will also warranty all work so you will be covered no matter what concerns arise.
You should also be provided a free quote. This quote should include all charges and fees upfront.
Professional locksmiths will not only provide your security audit but will also offer a range of services. After your audit is complete, they will help you choose the security options that are the best fit for your business and your budget.
Are You Ready to Reap the Rewards of a Security Audit?
If you have not had the security of your company building audited in the last year, now is the time.
Protect your assets and your employees by making sure your security protocols are up to date and your site is secure. In the world today, it makes good financial sense to invest in security to protect your business inside and out.
Make sure your business is secure by contacting us today to receive a free quote.