The Security Week That Was: A Recap - May 7-13, 2005

The world of security never slows down. Just when it was all quiet, a couple of general aviation enthusiasts decided to put the White House on alert, calling for the use of F-16s, a Blackhawk chopper and a mass evacuation of The White House and the Capitol Building. While it undoubtedly provided tourists an exciting day, this D.C. airspace breach is nothing new, with over a dozen reported incidents since 9/11. The previous one, which required the evacuation of the president, might have been a bird on the radar screen or just a radar anomaly. Fortunately, says former DHS Secretary Tom Ridge, this week's response was appropriate -- probably mostly because these kind of breaches happen more than the public would have suspected.

Dealers, pay attention: While the D.C. airspace breach may not affect how you sell and install alarm systems, a bill in the Texas legislature certainly would. It spells out in detail such things as notification of your customers when your phone number changes, how much permits can costs, how false alarm policies can be set up, your duties as a security dealer and more.

It's not just Texas that's changing rules which will affect your business. The NFPA's technical committee has been working on a standard that would affect the installation of security systems. It deals primarily with CCTV, access control and intrusion detection, and it seeks to increase equipment reliability and quality and, in doing so, help decrease false alarms. The NBFAA is out with a position paper on the subject, charging that this proposed standard (NFPA 731) may not be beneficial for your business.

It's not all dealer news this week, though. For those of you in the end-user community, there was a news story that is proof that security has everything to do with ROI. The story? In a nutshell, the government is balking about paying for $14 million of the costs that resulted from the Los Alamos security shutdown.

Finally, we end up back in the world of terrorism, where Ohio is approaching terrorism legislation from an interesting angle. Take some recent incidents: the fire at the Hummer dealership in California; fire attacks at Colorado ski resorts; and release of caged animals. Ohio is dealing with these incidents before they reach its borders by planning for tougher ecoterrorism laws.

Finally, to wrap up the week, we recommend you check out some of the most popular stories your peers have already chosen to enjoy.