At a meeting of its member organisations* held in London on Thursday 30 June, the new Security Research Initiative (SRI) study was announced. This time around, the aim is to produce a ‘Strategy for Change for the Security Sector’.
There’s a whole range of strategies that guide thinking on a variety of activities in defence and on policing and in tackling terrorism, fraud and organised come (to name but a few). The aim of this new SRI project is to consider what the future directions of security might be.
The context includes a police service facing challenging resource constraints, an economic outlook which is breeding concern about crime and disorder issues, a recognition that the protection of key parts of the national infrastructure rests in private sector hands – and, therefore, involves private security – but with a lack of clarity about how this can best be harnessed and plenty of discussions about police/private sector partnerships, but with fewer shining samples of good practices.
Then there’s the threats posed by cyber crime, the increasing costs of labour and the opportunities presented by technology.
Where, though, does all of this leave private security?
Some of the issues that the SRI may consider include approaches needed to position the security sector (corporates and suppliers) as partners of choice, processes for increasing trust in what security does, identifying the unique capabilities of the security sector and examining exactly what the police service and insurers see as the benefits to be had from a thriving private security business sector.
*There are presently 16 member organisations involved with the SRI. They are: Sodexo, KPMG, Emprise, Mitie, the Security Industry Authority, E.ON, G4S, Securitas, CAT, Interr Security, the OCS Group, VSG, Nedap, Adidas, M&S and Royal Mail. The SRI is supported by the British Security Industry Association, The Security Institute and ASIS International’s UK Chapter