HOUSTON, TEXAS - During the past year, security has remained in the spotlight for corporations doing business globally. Corporate aviation is no exception. London's underground bombings, terrorist threats and natural disasters, such as the Asian tsunami and recent hurricanes that hit the United States, have re-emphasized the need for proper threat assessments and risk mitigation.
Air Security International (ASI), a leading provider of intelligence and security services (NBAA 2005, Booth 2314), understands this need all too well.
"Our global economy first generated the need for safe traveling," explained Charlie LeBlanc, ASI's vice-president of operations. "Professionals were flying to remote places in the world to do business. They're still doing that today and even more so, but the difference is that more criminals and terrorists are targeting them and, in particular, Americans. Natural disasters are adding to the mix of dangerous scenarios, and corporations are forced to take a much closer look at the threats their employees face and how they can mitigate their risks."
Business aviation, with the support of the NBAA's Security Council, continues to move forward by placing more formal risk mitigation processes in place. As a result, ASI enlarged its capabilities this year in a number of ways.
ASI Member of NBAA Security Council
ASI's LeBlanc extended his sitting membership on the NBAA Security Council, composed of security professionals and representatives from all facets of business aviation. Created after 9/11, the council's first job was to develop a method to document business aviation's best security practices, which was developed into a security protocol that the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) used in a "proof-of-concept security program." After program testing of Part 91 operators based at Teterboro (TEB), Westchester County (HPN) and Morristown (MMU), operators received a TSA Access Certification (TSAAC). TSAAC operators may fly internationally without having to pass through one of the eight "portal" countries as outlined in FDC 2/5319. TSA plans to roll out TSAAC to additional airports in 2005.
ASI Participates in NBAA 2005 Panel Discussion on
LeBlanc is also participating in a panel discussion during NBAA 2005 entitled NBAA Maximizing Your Security Dollar - Getting the Most from Your Security Investment, which takes place on Wednesday, November 9, 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon. Government and industry security experts will discuss current issues and trends in aviation security, including changes at the Department of Homeland Security and TSA, latest updates on TSAAC and restoring access to Reagan National Airport (DCA).
ASI Supports MEDEX Assistance
MEDEX Assistance, a travel assistance company that helps travelers with medical, security and other emergencies, turned to ASI for help in supporting its clients with intelligence, security services and consulting along with ASI's expertise in nonmedical emergency evacuations. "MEDEX wanted to provide its clients with solid security and intelligence services," said Mark Hall, vice-president business development. "We both believe in growing our businesses one client at a time, so teaming up with MEDEX was a very natural fit. We're very proud to be working with them."
Airline Insider Product Enhanced
Airline Insider, an easy-to-use, online information system, contains ratings and reports on approximately 200 carriers around the world. ASI increased the number of airlines listed by 30 percent. Organized in a simple reference format, users can list all of the airlines in the system alphabetically, by country or by region, allowing subscribers to quickly find alternative airlines without complicated database searches.
World Monitor Watch Product Created
ASI activated a new service called World Monitor Watch, following the four major global events of the past 12 months (London bombings, the tsunami, and Hurricanes Katrina and Rita). World Monitor Watch allows clients to frequent one Web site to quickly review all relevant news sources in chronological order. Clients can easily follow a catastrophic event without spending additional time and money pulling from a variety of sources.
New Investigations Division Started
ASI acquired Paladin Investigations, Inc., a private investigations firm that conducts investigations for the business, financial and legal communities as well as for select individuals. Now under the umbrella of ASI's Investigations Division, Paladin relocated to ASI headquarters. Services include: background, asset and insurance investigations; pre-employment screening; due diligence; surveillance; subject locates; public records research; uncover operations; and patent and trademark violations.
ASI Meets Security Assessment Needs of Corporate
In light of the NBAA Security Council's efforts and of events such as the stolen $7 million Cessna Citation 7 in St. Augustine, Fla., security initiatives are on the rise throughout the corporate aviation community. Complacency is what the council and ASI clients are trying to avoid. ASI experts have spent much of the past 12 months developing better security infrastructure for flight departments. ASI's security assessment service has increased by 30 percent this year. In addition to re-examining security procedures in buildings and hangars, many flight departments are also returning to the basics: keeping their crews and passengers safe while on the road.
ASIS is online at www.airsecurity.com.