The security week that was: 02/27/09

Coming soon, a new and improved SecurityInfoWatch.com

When we launched SecurityInfoWatch.com in September of 2004, we had three objectives: Information, Assessment, Community. We wanted to provide as much news and information about the security industry as our crack team of writers and editors could possibly post on the site. Sometimes that's meant pulling all-nighters at tradeshows covering a gazillion new products and company news. Sometimes it's meant tracking major incidents, keeping CNN and FOX news running in the background on a TV as we call our sources about a major security incident.

On the issue of assessment, we wanted to reach out to experts in the industry who could provide analysis that goes beyond the news – and our ever-increasing stack of experts has proved that we could do that. Whether it's a writer discussing security protection for water facilities or the latest in networked video architectures, we've been incredibly indebted to all of the security and technology professionals who have provided information and assessment to you, our site users.

On the topic of community, we saw a somewhat disjointed industry that was being held together by some very good associations and membership organizations. To help develop a spirit of community in the security industry, we wanted a place for magazine subscribers from Security Technology Executive, Security Dealer & Integrator and Security Technician to come together as a community and share their voices. We wanted to create a single website where everyone in our industry could feel welcome, whether they were the CSO for a Fortune 100 company, a local alarm dealer just starting out in business, a systems integrator versed in IT and physical security, a security officer on the street, a product manufacturer creating a security system, or a consultant providing site assessments and RFP assistance. We also wanted to further the community in our industry by creating world-class discussion forums and blogs that hit on topical security issues and concerns.

In the back of our minds, education has always been a bedrock foundation which supports that three-part mission. Education happens in many different channels, whether it's reading an article and learning about something you didn't know five minutes ago, or joining a webinar and bouncing ideas off a guest lecturer, or asking your peer a question in our forums.

It wasn't always easy to accomplish these goals, but the work has been a lot of fun – and I can only attribute that to the quality of people in our industry.

Now, in our fifth year, we've decided to spruce things up a bit. With more and more information, more and more assessment, and an even greater community, the old version of SIW wasn't fully meeting our needs. So with the help of some wonderful programmers, graphical artists, editors, critics, site managers, publishers and site users, we've quietly been building a new and improved SecurityInfoWatch.com. The new SecurityInfoWatch.com will be coming out next week as soon as we finish the landscaping and get a final coat of paint on the walls, but some of the things that you can look forward to are the following:

  • Better site navigation to help you find what you're looking for
  • A cleaner look with more space on the page
  • Article comments so you can share your own thoughts and insights on articles (be nice!)
  • New blogs from security industry experts and greater integration of our excellent blog contributors into our site pages
  • A whitepaper research tool and archive so you can drill down into excellent, in-depth content which you can download and read at your leisure
  • A greater presence of online videos about security issues and technology (we know you like to watch!)
  • Polls to gauge industry perceptions and provide you direct feedback on how your responses align with your peers
  • Discussion forum topics integrated into our site – no longer will you have to hunt to find our incredibly busy discussion forums
  • An increased focus and presence for our top-notch columnists and guest authors
  • A quick set of links on our "Laws & Standards" page to help you track down legislation in your state which could affect your business
  • Improved pages for our excellent magazines, including a new, robust archives function to help you find great information from issues ago
  • Better tie-ins with our buyer's guide, so when you're looking for companies to do business with, you can find them quickly
  • Even more improved tradeshow coverage to help you wade through the high volume of vendor news that comes out of these excellent shows

We've also made it easier to get to some of the great content that we had added since we originally designed the site. No longer will you have to hunt to find out where to add your events to our calendar, what our next webinar will cover, or what the newest video surveillance product is.

We hope you enjoy the newly reconfigured site when it launches next week, and we hope you'll send us emails (editor@securityinfowatch.com) to tell us about any squeaky floorboards or places where some touch-up paint is needed in our new house. We are committed to providing you a wonderful (and free) source of information, assessment and community, and we are continually honored to have you as our site users and readers. We'll be sending an email to everyone registered for our newsletters to announce the new site when it goes live, but until then, we're going to refill our coffee mugs, put our noses back in the code and finish up some last-minute things.

And some of the week's industry news
…Because lots of things are happening which are more important than our new site

A proposed Nevada law would not protect security researchers investigating deficiencies in RFID system designs. … March Networks has landed the Singapore Land Transport Authority mass transit system as a client for its VideoSphere video management system. … Oklahoma has defended employees' rights to keep guns in their cars which are parked in a company parking lot. … ASIS International has released the names of the ASIS CSO Roundtable advisory board and also established has established a partnership with ISSA. … SDI magazine publisher Carol Enman shares insights from the alarm industry's Barnes Buchanan Conference. … Panasonic and Pelco are working together for video integration. … The AASA released numbers from a broad survey which examines perceptions and priorities in school security. … Former Integral Technologies leaders have purchased the Pelco Intelli-M electronic access control business unit and are now running it as an independent firm, Infinias.

Finally, here's a look at our most read stories of the week:

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