A Name Change Is Nothing to Fear

When our staff first began discussing the possible name change of our magazine to Security Technology Executive early this spring I entered with an open mind and, yes, more than a little trepidation.

It doesn’t matter if you are talking about changing schools, doctors or jobs — all change evokes the emotions of fear, helplessness and a lack of trust or confidence. I remember my first encounter with a self-flush toilet at O’Hare Airport in Chicago. I got up, it went off and I maneuvered into self-defense mode thinking someone was in the stall behind me.

So changing the title of our magazine was not something we looked at lightly. We needed to do our homework.

When Security Technology & Design was launched in 1991, the vision was to celebrate the emerging integrated technology market and its applications. A lot has changed.

As this industry has changed, so has our publication’s content. ST&D was the first magazine to incorporate the business equation and enterprise risk management topics into the mainstream security lexicon. For the past five years, ST&D has championed the convergence of physical and logical security platforms in print, through SecurityInfoWatch.com and with its GSO 2010 seminars.

The paradigm shift we are seeing has been the result of complex business principles driving security strategies. This change to an enterprise risk management approach to security function has become the foundation of our editorial message. Our subscribers have told us they need help as the industry goes through this transitional phase. New network-centric solutions await adoption into the mainstream. Security executives wrestle with replacing aging legacy systems, while concepts like ROI, metrics, compliance and open-platform solutions replace the old “guns and guard” mentality.

Security executives and managers in many organizations are being confronted by a new situation: Physical security systems and equipment are migrating onto the corporate network, often with little or no consultation or advance warning to IT — and often creating an uncomfortable partnership between the two departments.

We had changed the message, but not the packaging of our magazine over the years. So how did we make sure a name change is the right move? Well, we listened to a lot of folks. Over the past four months we have conducted surveys, held focus groups and just talked to our peers in the field. It was interesting to see how our readers see themselves and their positions in organization now compared to the years prior to the Sept. 11 attacks.

There is a critical need to address the expanding integration of traditional and information security functions. Security executives understand that they must ensure that board and senior executives pay attention to critical security-related issues and how a comprehensive approach to security can protect the enterprise.

Talking to you — security executives, integrators and vendors — has made it clear that the common goal is implementing risk-based security solutions we can all live with. So we now embrace change and welcome you to Security Technology Executive.

Each month, STE will continue to bring you highly focused editorial written by the most respected consultants, integrators and practitioners in the security field. That will not change. I promise!