Countering a Shapeless Threat: How Campus Security Can Implement Effective Layered Security Plans

Learn how a Security Mindset can help keep students, faculty and staff safe.

Crime on American campuses is not going away, and neither are the incidences of violent acts, such as active shootings and mobile active killers. That’s why administrators and campus police must take on a security mindset in devising policies that include a layered approach to campus security.

A layered security approach provides significant opportunities for conventional campus security forces to adopt strategies and tactics that enhance current best practices.

The fact that conventional security personnel on campus far outnumber highly trained law enforcement or other trained security operators makes them one of the quintessential elements to the safety equation. Your people are the go-to team when it comes to the first line of defense in preventing or detecting a criminal act on campus.

As we are all aware, police and authorities can only respond to those threats of which they are aware. They can’t be everywhere at once, and the perpetrators and specific circumstances will always vary.

If past cases have shown us anything, it is that policies must be formulated around the premise of preparation rather than hope.

Strengths Outweigh Weaknesses in a Layered Security Plan
That’s why layered security, known in the intelligence arena as “concentric rings of security,” is so important. The concept requires that you draw multiple circles around the property or assets that need to be protected.

How many circles you draw will depend on the level of threat and, perhaps more importantly, the resources you can allocate. Generally speaking, the more circles the better, but that number is normally restricted by financial and resource considerations.

It’s easy to add more circles as resources allow, as long as each circle is clearly delineated, and all circles are overlapping to allow for built-in redundancy. It’s also feasible to add or delete elements included in a circle. For example, the inner circle could be just a building, whereas the walkway surrounding the building and everything emanating out from there for 300 meters would be the outer ring.

Security May Patrol The Campus, But Where Will An Active Shooter, Mobile Active Killer, or Domestic Terrorist Be Detected?
Typically, in the campus environment, you will allocate less manpower in the outer ring than you will employ for the inner ring, where “access control” is absolutely critical to the welfare of all concerned on the campus at any given time. However, keep in mind that the outer ring represents a very powerful opportunity to detect danger before it reaches the inner circle, where the majority of the population resides.

This brings us to another key consideration, mobile technology. It’s in that outer ring that security officers should be looking for people and status changes regularly. Mobile technology offers a critical tool to rapidly disseminate information to campus administrators and students, as well as local authorities, to further mitigate those threats.

Obviously, not every person walking around campus is seeking to perpetrate violence, but the goal is to educate everyone on campus to recognize and avoid dangerous situations in advance and evade those situations they cannot avoid. Mobile technology allows rapid alerts to maintain the constant flow of dynamic information to the populace.

As the need for greater levels of security grows and evolves in accordance with the emerging threat environment, there’s also the need to develop new security strategies to enable faster learning, broadcasting, and alerts for the rapid application of intelligence.

Mobile technology, such as Defense Coach University’s security framework application, gives you the power to deliver critical information wherever and whenever needed. This cutting-edge mobile technology puts information and power in the hands of campus administrators, security personnel, and others on campus to reduce risk. Shrink the security gap by enabling aspects of a layered security apparatus to counter those shapeless threats.

Shrink the safety education gap at your school by evaluating Defense Coach University’s College Safety Prep program at no charge. Get a no-obligation, ten-user evaluation pack now.

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