Executive Protection within the Domestic Estate
Some tips on setting up security in the home.
It is well-advised to be safe when traveling or dining out, but we often let our guard down when we are at home, otherwise known as the Domestic Estate. What do we need to be aware of when at home?
The first step is to take a good look at your property and the sum total of who or what comes in and goes out. What workers, suppliers and delivery vehicles come in periodically and what people leave and come back on a regular basis such as domestic help, landscapers, pool maintenance companies, trainers, etc..
Start with the family members.
They need to be taught not to talk about or to disclose any family matters, especially security matters. This is all well and good in theory, but it is hard to impress upon a 9 year old not to tell her friends her daddy is going to Africa, or that mommy and daddy went to China and brought her back a cool toy. It is also hard to keep chatter and teenage bragging from not slipping out into Facebook (or the many other social networks available), emails etc… But one must express the importance of these security regulations you have at home and even test them once in a while if you must. Reward them for passing the test and scold them mildly for failing… Also – create passwords for the home network and monitor what the kids are doing on the home network. Sure, they can make mistakes away from home – but you must work with what you can monitor.
All employees that visit the house both periodically and on a regular basis must go through a pre-hire background check and at least one background check every year. As an EP professional you can probably do most of the work by yourself but if not hire a private investigator that specializes in genuine background checks – don’t go for the on-line $75.00 crap. It can be a real red faced moment when your charges driver has a DUI undisclosed or a suspended license for not paying a parking ticket… You get it, but you need to do the background checks to make 100% sure.
All suppliers should pre-submit the names and information of any regular delivery person or service people that will be allowed on to the grounds. Grocery or flower deliveries, plumbers, electricians etc… all have great access and ability to gather information when they pass the perimeter. Other deliveries and package services should be accepted outside the perimeter.
With regards to the perimeter, the diehard old security guys recommend that a security fence is essential so you can see out and identify the threat. In this way, you have the control of who you let into the grounds. Before the excellent and cost effective cameras this was true but one can now easily build a privacy perimeter of bricks, stone etc… and simply install a camera where the visitors can be viewed clearly. Think about installing a PSIM System (as describe by Jules Trocci in a previous edition of Aegis Journal). Use a PSIM- Professional Security Integrated Management system for monitoring all alarms, cameras, gates, etc… Also think of putting a camera up well outside the perimeter of your property if one is able to do so. It’s always interesting to see the view of your estate from across the street or down the road to potentially identify anyone monitoring the property or approaching. In some cases, I have seen people using the little drone helicopters for emergency surveillance; they work great – if you have a good pilot!
All personal should be trained in: Heimlich Maneuver, advanced first aid, CPR – (cardio pulmonary resuscitation), and a few should be trained as EMTs – Emergency Medical Technicians. All should have panic buttons on them that can alert to the nature of the emergency through the PSIM system. Ideally this panic button should also have an audio function when activated.
All employees should carry encrypted radios to communicate on the estate – if they also have panic button – you get a two for one bonus. They are just a very practical tool for every day work. We have all seen it – someone on the estate calling someone else on the estate via cell phone – much like your spouse forgetting where she left you when you two went shopping – she just calls your cell – we rely on them as a wonderful tool that they are – but really? The cost of an encrypted radio is so low and also much safer – make the minor investment.
Also remember – your work needs to be as discrete as possible. Your job is to make sure your charges are both safe and able to live as freely as possible. Follow these tips in order to enjoy the fruits of a safe home and a safe family.
This Executive Protection article was written or edited by Baron James Shortt, the Executive Director of the IBA. http://www.ibabodyguards.com