The Security Week That Was: A Recap - Oct. 28-Nov. 3, 2006

True or False: Terrorism doesn't happen at your regular office environment unless you're in an icon-type building like the Trade Center towers were.

The correct answer: Unequivocally false -- as proven Halloween evening at eBay's PayPal network operations center in San Jose. An explosion, which law enforcement authorities say was deliberately set, blew out a window and forced the evacuation of the office. While no threats were made prior to the explosion, and although the explosion has been classified as an "isolated" incident, this story underscores the realities of modern threats.

Fremont, again?
Lawsuit over the process to verified response continues to churn

When Fremont, Calif., went to a verified response policy, it was a painful time. The city, faced with budget shortfalls, had to find a place to cut. And cut they did, creating an ordinance whereby police would only respond to burglar alarm calls if the incident was verified as "real". The process was contentious and a milestone for those tracking these types of ordinances.

However, one Fremont insurance salesman doesn't think the ordinance is reasonable or that the process by which it was created was legal. Dennis Wolfe was given the OK to proceed with a lawsuit that alleges that proper protocol regarding open meetings was not followed in the 2005 passage of this verified response. Could it mean that the ordinance might be overturned? That's not very likely, but the Appeals Courts decision at least indicates that these types of ordinances can't be shot through city councils without following proper procedures to make sure the public is informed.

On the gangplank
The MS-13 gang -- mobile, growing and very dangerous

We picked up a story out of Dallas about the Mara Salvatrucha 13 gang, best known as MS-13. Developed from a Salvadoran gang, the group has been spreading into the United States, and is creating problems to enforcement agencies due to the challenge that the gang blends in among mobile immigrant communities. No doubt you've already heard of an atrocity committed by this gang (brutal actions of murder and violence are part of their lineage); this article offers input on where this gang is today.

Losing their bearing
GSA ends BearingPoint HSPD-12 contract, sending services contract back out to bid

BearingPoint argues that they've done nothing wrong -- in fact they released a statement announcing the quality of support they've given for HSPD-12 implementations -- but that didn't have much sway. The company, a leading government services provider, had been contracted with the GSA to assist in HSPD-12 roll-outs...and by all accounts, the company was fulfilling its task. But the GSA unexpectedly ended BearingPoint's contract early. Insiders believe that the contract is being rebid (and BearingPoint can certainly bid) because competitors complained that BearingPoint was given favoritism and that the contract was almost predetermined.

Security at financial institutions
SIW to make discussion from financial security symposium in Florida available live on the Web

In less than two weeks, is going to bring you a really unique education program. We've partnered with ADT Security Services, which is holding its sixth annual Financial Security Symposium near Palm Beach. Security Technology & Design editor Steve Lasky is going to speak as part of a panel discussing security convergence in the banking/financial services industry. The panel will also feature top level security and IT leaders, including:

- Gareth Webley, CSO, National City (panel leader)
- Ryan Buckley, VP Information Security, Citizens Financial Corp.
- Adam Stanislaus, First Data Corporation, VP Corporate Security
- and John Maya, ADT, Group Director, Information Technology will be taking that presentation and putting it live on our site in the form of a webinar, where those of you not in Florida at the conference will have the chance of listening in and even asking these panelists questions about banking security. The webinar program is a "must-attend" for banking security leaders, and the convergence information is good material for any security director. Register now to attend this Nov. 15th webinar for free.

Relo the HQ
Industry players picking new offices

It was a week of vendor office moves and openings. First, Securitas announced that it was losing its CFO as it moved the financial operations from the UK to Stockholm. Hakan Winberg reportedly elected not to move along with the headquarters relocation.

Meanwhile, back in the U.S., video analytics company Cernium is hopping its headquarters from Missouri to the Washington, D.C. area. The move reflects a drive to be close to government purchasers and national-level contractors and integrators. Windy City Wire is moving, but with a name like Windy City Wire, they can't move away from Chicago. The company is taking a new space in the Chicago burb or Bolingbrook, not far from previous offices in Hillside. More room for inventory is part of the reasoning behind the move.

And finally, while it's not a headquarters, it's a significant enough move to put it in this week's newsletter. UTC Fire & Security (Kidde, Lenel, Chubb, etc.) is opening up an office in Shanghai to target the growing Chinese security and life safety systems market.

Of course, you may want to see what your peers are reading. Take a glimpse at our top read stories of the week: