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6 Security Mistakes Every Business Should Avoid

When you’re establishing a business, security should be at the top of your list. Of course you want to increase your revenue and traffic flow, but protection is also essential. Many firms make common security mistakes like the ones listed below—ones that could end up ruining their business.

1. Failing to Hire a Security Guard

Most businesses assume that installing cameras and CCTV will safeguard their business, but technology is bound to crash at some point. Security guards are convenient because they don’t malfunction, and they can safeguard a location around the clock. If you rely on CCTV for security, you’re likely to find glitches with the memory, and professional thieves can quickly turn off these cameras. For extra protection, hire a San Jose private security guard firm.

2. Failing to Hire the Right Security Company

It’s essential to determine whether a security company offers high-quality services or not. Many businesses bypass this step and hire any security firm they see or the first one that comes to mind. This decision may eventually have a negative effect on their business because the security guards they hire don’t safeguard their property well. It’s vital to carry out a background check of all security firms you’re considering to determine how capable they are.

3. Failing to Identify Exact Security Needs

Many businesses fail to correctly define their security requirements, and they end up hiring the wrong security firm. You must first determine the unique things about your business that need to be safeguarded and then look for the security company in San Jose that can provide the right protection for you.

4. Failing to Secure and Control Access Points

Businesses often have more than one entry point, and these must be controlled. If an entry point is for employees only, this should be stated clearly on the door, and only employees should be able to unlock it. Exit points also need to be established and controlled so employees and clients can leave safely in the event of an emergency.

5. Failing to Maintain Security Systems

Security systems such as CCTVs aren’t for decoration. Their purpose is to monitor a location 24/7. Many businesses don’t check these systems routinely and make necessary repairs or replacements. Without proper maintenance, these systems won’t be able to serve their security function for the business.

6. Failing to Take Security Matters Seriously

Many companies assume they’re safe, especially when they’re located in places where theft and robbery are uncommon. If you’re operating under this mistaken assumption, you could be putting your employees and clients at risk.

Don’t take the security of your business for granted. Mistakes can be costly, so make sure to do your research and look for a firm that employs the most trustworthy security guards in San Jose. The professionals at ADS Guards can assess your security needs and devise a plan that’s just right for you and your business. To talk to one of our experienced representatives, call us today at 1-800-794-1550.

5 Ways Professional Security Guards Can Protect Against Fires

San Jose private security guards have two main responsibilities: one is to protect life and the other is to protect property. Within these responsibilities, security guards know the risk of structural fires, whether accidental or incidental, is something they should be prepared to handle. Fire detection and prevention are two important aspects of security guard training. While intervention and reaction are also crucial, being able to spot fire risks always comes first. Here are five tactics employed by security guards in terms of spotting and preventing fires.

1. Monitor Indoor Temperatures

Changes in temperature will put security guards on alert. In establishments where thermometers and temperature gauges are posted, guards can make it a point to check readings either remotely or when making their rounds. Should a sudden spike in temperature be detected, guards can immediately investigate and sound the alarm if needed.

2. Evaluate Fire Suppressors

As part of their training, security guards in San Jose know certain building features serve as fire suppressors. For example, heavy steel doors can contain a fire long enough to evacuate personnel and allow firefighters to arrive. If a fire suppressor is damaged or in bad condition, guards are expected to notify their supervisors and facility managers.

3. Pay Attention to Visual Signs

When security guards go on foot patrols, they can pay close attention to visual signs of smoke or flames, and the same goes for personnel assigned to video monitoring centers. Naturally, sounding the alarm will be the guard’s first and immediate reaction. However, a visual assessment also notes other dangers such as the direction of the flames and the proximity of flammable materials. When firefighters arrive, they may ask security guards about the characteristics of the flames so they can formulate a containment strategy. At any rate, guards always use all their senses when making rounds and checking for fires.

4. Keep Evacuation Routes Clear

Firms that provide security services can design a fire prevention and evacuation plan. Once this is accomplished, it’s up to security guards to keep evacuation routes clear. Corridors and exit doors must be kept free of obstacles and combustible materials, which is something security guards are expected to enforce, particularly in industrial workplaces. Guards can also be assigned important duties during evacuations. For example, they can take roll call and assist workers with disabilities.

5. Enforce Fire Safety Standards

Security guards assigned to workplaces where hazardous materials are stored or handled can attend Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) training sessions, which allows them to take on a more functional role regarding fire safety. Guards who make rounds and observe dangerous situations such as flammable materials stored near combustibles can notify safety officers. Moreover, security personnel can also be assigned to check on the condition of fire extinguishers, sensors, and alarms.

If you need one or more highly trained security guards to protect your business, reach out to ADS Guards. We have been providing San Jose and the greater Bay Area with professional guards for nearly two decades. Call 1-800-794-1550 today to speak with one of our friendly representatives and receive a free quote.

How to Determine the Number of Security Guards Your Company Needs

The security needs of a business enterprise are determined by the security plan. New companies rarely draft a security plan, but they have two choices in this regard: appoint a Chief Security Officer to handle planning or retain the services of a security company in San Jose to conduct an assessment. One of the considerations of security planning focuses on the number of guards to assign, which can be determined based on the following criteria.

Critical Security Coverage

As previously mentioned, each company should designate a director of security, and this doesn’t have to be an individual who is dedicated exclusively to this function. It can be an executive or senior manager who acts as a liaison with the security services provider. Critical coverage begins with designating an internal director of security and continues with figuring out minimum assignments. For a small retail store staffed by less than six workers during operating hours, critical coverage would be one San Jose security guard on the premises per shift, but adequate coverage will be determined by other factors.

Staff-to-Customer Ratios

Similar to the way public safety departments calculate the ratio of police officers per population, business owners should sit down with CSOs or providers of security services to figure out how many guards they need. The three aspects to evaluate are:

  • Personnel allocation based on staffing and customers
  • Space analysis
  • Shift activity

Calculating staff-to-customer ratios is not a purely mathematical endeavor. It’s tied to space analysis and the various events that unfold during shifts as well as existing resources.

Security and Readiness Levels

The desired level of safety in accordance to potential risks will also determine how many guards are assigned. A full level of security services may include video monitoring, foot patrols, guards posted at entry and exit points, a reaction force, and trained personnel who project a certain corporate image. A responsive or reactive level of security services may be limited to providing one guard per shift for up to 100 staff members or customers, but this may prove to be inadequate for companies that are trying to reduce their exposure to liability.

Potential Activity Level

A more important factor than space analysis and personnel allocation is the expected number of safety situations a company may face. For example, a law firm engaged in lobbying of controversial policy issues is bound to experience more potential security situations than a firm dedicated to commercial real estate transactions. A nightclub venue that features live music performances, regardless of musical genre, could have quite a few potential issues to worry about. Potential activity levels can also be estimated by looking at crime statistics in nearby districts. Some parts of Northern California will present higher activity levels than others.

No matter how many professional guards your company needs, you can rely on ADS Guards to provide them. We offer highly trained guards who are capable of protecting a wide array of businesses. Call 1-800-794-1550 today to receive a free quote.

How to Make High School Campuses Safer

The heartbreaking Valentine’s Day massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida created various factions that have taken their concerns to Congress and the White House. While the media has mostly focused on the political angle of these factions, there is a shared interest related to increasing campus security. Some of the proposed measures in this regard, such as arming teachers, have resulted in controversial headlines. Following are a few objective, reasonable, and actionable measures to make schools safer for students and staff members.

Define School Perimeters

Many schools in urban areas already feature fencing and other barriers that clearly define perimeters. However, this is often not the case in suburban and rural communities. There is more to defining perimeters than just installing fences. Perimeters should also be monitored for the purpose of taking action when barriers are breached. Fencing is effective in terms of limiting access to a single point of entry.

Utilize Double-Entry Systems

When San Jose security guards are posted at subsequent entry points, potential intruders are more easily dissuaded. Ideally, this double-entry system will be manned when students arrive and leave the campus. When classes are in session, the outer entrance can be equipped with an intercom.

Train Guards in Intruder Response

One of the most criticized aspects of the Florida school shooting was the inadequate reaction by an armed sheriff’s deputy during the incident. Nonetheless, the gunman was spotted on campus before he started shooting. Handling intruders is now a strong focus of security guard training these days, and this is not limited to reacting to active shooter situations. For example, if a newspaper reporter carrying a notepad wanders into a school, security guards will know how to approach the individual without immediately resorting to the use of force.

Install Adequate Glass at School Entrances

Quite a few American schools are rethinking the use of panoramic windows and glass doors at their entrances. First of all, the material should be high-impact resistant glass. Second, visibility should be functional, meaning security guards should be able to see from the inside instead of making it easy for anyone on the outside to look inside the building.

Add Panic Buttons to Classrooms

Schools should not rely solely on administrators to contact police from their front offices. Security guards and teachers should also be able to activate panic buttons as long as they are properly trained to use them. Naturally, the location of these emergency devices should be privy to those who are authorized to use them.

Train Faculty in Situational Awareness Training

While security guards assigned to schools will have undergone this training, it should be extended to teachers and other staff members. When properly taught, situational awareness becomes a rational attitude more than just an acquired skill, and it can go a long way toward making sure adverse situations are detected early.

If you need professional guards to protect a school, get in touch with ADS Guards, a reliable security company. San Jose residents have placed their trust in our services for nearly two decades. For a free quote, call 1-800-794-1550 today.

6 Misconceptions about Professional Security Guards

As with other professional fields, the public is often misinformed about the duties, responsibilities, and career paths of security guards. Comedic films such as Paul Blart: Mall Cop only serve to perpetuate the various misconceptions surrounding security professionals and their jobs. The staff at ADS Guards, one of the leading security companies in San Jose, shares the following myths commonly associated with security guards, which are far from the truth.

1. Security Guards Are Too Expensive to Hire

This is a dangerous misconception that probably originates at the business planning level. For some reason, many business plan templates omit security as a business process, which results in applications for commercial financing to be revised because they do not take this cost into consideration. When you factor in shrinkage, risks, and liabilities modern businesses face, the cost of retaining security guards becomes reasonable and makes perfect sense.

2. Security Guards Are Only Trained to Stop Shoplifters

This tall tale emanates from the fact that many people mostly see uniformed guards posted at stores. While it is true that the retail sector generates a lot of jobs for security guards, they are also retained across many other industries. Security guards can be found at hospitals, campuses, corporate parks, manufacturing facilities, transportation terminals, and just about anywhere else there is a need to protect life and property.

3. Security Guards Are Not Tech-Savvy

This myth has no basis in reality. Security guards assigned to video surveillance rooms happen to know enough about networking technology to conduct their own troubleshooting. Modern security guards are expected to use computers, smartphones, radios, and other devices in the course of their duties.

4. Security Guards Are Out of Shape

This urban legend was one of the plot points of the aforementioned Paul Blart film, whereby the main character of the film did not make the police academy because his poor physical condition resulted in hypoglycemia. In reality, security guards are expected to be physically fit to meet the demands of their jobs, which often entail patrolling on foot, standing for long periods, responding quickly to incidents, and evacuating individuals during emergencies.

5. Security Guards Are Not Properly Trained

This misconception ignores the fact that security guards are expected to undergo dozens of training hours just to get licensed at the state level. Moreover, guards assigned to executive protection, corporate security, and undercover loss prevention receive extensive training so they can carry out their special duties.

6. Security Guards Are Washed Up Veterans and Disgraced Cops

Security guard agencies often give preference to military veterans and former law enforcement personnel because their skills and experience come in handy, but they must present clean discharge papers and service records to be hired. It should be noted that professional security agencies are required to keep considerable liability insurance policies with very high premiums, which would be a lot higher if they took a chance on hiring individuals with questionable backgrounds.

If you’re interested in hiring professional security guards in San Jose for commercial or residential spaces, reach out to ADS Guards. Call 1-800-794-1550 today to get a free quote and speak with one of our friendly representatives.

How to Remain Safe When Staying at a Hotel

Hotel security may be the last thing you think about when you’re on a trip, but you certainly don’t want your trip ruined by theft, fire, or worse. It pays to put security first, especially if you’re traveling alone or in an unfamiliar area. Here are some tips to help you stay safe in your hotel, no matter where your travels take you.

Research the Area and Hotel

Every city has neighborhoods with higher crime rates than surrounding areas. Find out whether certain areas are more secure than others and whether tourists tend to be targeted in the neighborhood. You should also check the security of the hotel itself. Ask if the front desk is manned 24/7, whether there are on-site San Jose security guards, and whether the hotel has surveillance cameras. You may also want to ask if the hotel restricts access to guest floors to people with room keys for extra safety. Finally, check guest reviews of the hotel to identify any security concerns.

Keep the Door Locked

When you’re in your room, make it a habit to keep the door locked with the security chain and deadbolt. For additional protection, you can bring a rubber door stopper to fortify the door against a break-in. After all, even the best hotel may have a crook who did not have a criminal record and can access guestrooms.

Don’t Leave Valuables Visible

When you leave your room, make sure you use your in-room safe for storing jewelry, cash, and other small valuables. Because the hotel likely doesn’t accept liability for any items in your guest room safe, you can also ask the front desk to hold valuables. If you do, just make sure you get a written receipt.

Protect Yourself When Traveling Alone

If you’re staying in a hotel by yourself, you may be seen as a target. To reduce this risk, book your room with just the first letter of your name so it isn’t gender-specific, such as “J. Jones.” If you order room service, call to place your order. If you’re concerned about your safety, ask a hotel employee to escort you from the lobby to your car. Because the peephole can give people outside your room a glimpse inside, put a bandage over it while you’re staying at the hotel.

Avoid Staying on the Ground Floor

It may be convenient for guests, but the ground floor is the easiest for non-guests to access as well. Ideally, ask for a room on floors 4 through 6. These floors can be reached by a ladder truck in case of fire, but they’re far enough from the ground floor that you won’t be an easy target.

Don’t Open the Door for Strangers

If someone knocks on the door and you aren’t expecting anyone, don’t assume they work for the hotel, even if they say they do. Always call the front desk to verify before you open your door and allow someone into your room.

If you run or manage a hotel and want to keep your guests as safe as possible, consider hiring a professional security guard to patrol the premises. At ADS Guards, one of the leading security companies in San Jose, we take pride in providing expertly trained guards for commercial and residential spaces. For a free quote, call 1-800-794-1550 today.

5 Internet Security Myths You Should Be Aware Of

The internet is a place where information and misinformation often collide on a variety of topics. Urban legends, myths, and fake news have become problematic in recent years, particularly regarding cyber security. When dealing with the protection of company, employee, and customer data, the last thing a business owner needs is to fall for internet security myths. At a time when cybercrime activity is generating more than a trillion dollars in global losses each year, it’s important to take note of the following online security misconceptions, brought to you by ADS Guards, one of the leading security companies in San Jose, CA.

1. Antivirus Software and Firewalls Provide Enough Protection

Ever since the “Creeper” virus was first detected in the ARPANET days, there has always been a need for protective measures beyond the standard firewall and antivirus software applications. In recent years, operating systems exploits and social engineering attacks have managed to bypass basic security measures. To this effect, phishing attacks and passwords stolen by various means are proving to be more damaging.

2. Mac OSX and iOS are Secure Computing Platforms

Operating systems developed by tech giant Apple are thought to be more secure than Windows, but this is only because they command less market share. The first computer virus detected in home computers was developed for Apple desktop systems in the early 1980s. If anything, hackers who set out to develop malware for iPhones, iPads, MacBooks, and Macs relish the challenge and tend to be more skilled.

3. Online Security Software Slows Things Down

This may have been the case when Intel Pentium processors were the most powerful in the market, but it no longer applies in the era of the AMD Ryzen and Intel Skylake CPUs. Modern security software solutions are being developed to operate more efficiently. They can run in the background without slowing down applications and processes.

4. The New Cloud Computing Paradigm Offers More Security

Over the last few years, massive data breaches on public cloud systems managed by Amazon and Google have ushered a new concern in terms of information security. Part of the problem is the current state of geopolitics, which has seen the leak of cyber warfare weapons developed by the CIA and NSA. Now that hackers have accessed source code and strategies to exploit networks, they are choosing more substantial targets. Companies that put their digital infrastructure in the cloud must not ignore endpoint protection systems, and they should choose cloud computing providers with a proven security record.

5. Hackers Only Focus Their Efforts on Large Companies

Cybercrime groups are shifting their strategies so they involve “casting wide nets,” which means letting malicious processes and routines choose targets automatically. As long as a network presents a vulnerability, it becomes fair game for hackers. Even smart home automation devices such as advanced refrigerators and IP cameras can be targeted by cybercrime groups.

In addition to protecting your company’s internet activity, you might also want to hire highly trained security guards. San Jose businesses can place their trust in ADS Guards. For a free quote, call one of our knowledgeable representatives today at 1-800-794-1550.

How to Enhance Security in an Office Building

The security risks modern office building managers face are more numerous and complex than ever. Until a few decades ago, sophisticated criminals used to focus mostly on the retail sector. However, they are increasingly turning their attention to corporate parks and office buildings because they hope to find more relaxed security measures, and this expectation is fulfilled in many cases. When it comes to security, office building managers should not solely trust their instincts. Here are a few observations to consider when thinking about increasing security in office building settings.

Configure Alarm Systems According to UL 2050 Certification

When the United States Department of Defense seeks civilian contractors, UL 2050 certifications are often required if the work is to be conducted at an office building. This certification sets standards for the installation of alarm systems, monitoring, response, and investigations. Even if the tenants are not actively bidding on Department of Defense contracts, it is a good idea to implement some of the UL 2050 standards, which can later be upgraded to full certification.

Post Uniformed Security Guards

The physical presence of security guards is a strong deterrent against sophisticated criminals whose modus operandi is focused on never getting caught. Armed guards who patrol the parking lots and garages of office buildings can deter vandals and prevent vehicle break-ins. Posting a uniformed San Jose security guard in the lobby provides reassurance not just to tenants and employees but also to visitors.

Control Door Locking Systems

Key card access systems for employees should be closely monitored. Whenever possible, only guards, trustworthy staff members, and company principals should be issued master keys or all-access cards. Door locking systems that offer biometrics functionality tend to be safer, particularly when they are equipped with sensors and connected to networks that provide access logs and usage reports.

Implement Adequate Endpoint Network Security

Office buildings that rent spaces cannot assume responsibility for the network security measures of their tenants. However, building managers should ensure their own networks are secured since they are often the most sensitive. The digital records of property management companies are highly coveted by hackers who can sell them to sophisticated robbery crews. Special attention should be paid to devices that connect to the Internet of Things, which include IP cameras, smart locks, alarm systems, thermostats, and printers.

Draft and Enforce Smart Security Policies

Security policies such as requiring ID badges for employees and checking personal bags and briefcases will only seem excessive when they are not thoughtfully drafted and implemented. These policies should not be forcefully introduced as if they were being implemented at army barracks. Calling a staff meeting and explaining the need for increased security is the right way to do it. One idea in this regard is to look for news reports of security incidents in the region.

If you manage or own an office building and want to hire highly trained security guards, reach out to ADS Guards, one of the leading security companies in San Jose. To speak with one of our friendly representatives and receive a complimentary quote, please call 1-800-794-1550.

5 Safety Tips to Keep in Mind When Attending Summer Festivals

As the summer months approach, the postcard-like weather conditions give way to major festivals. Summer is the season when music festival organizers execute plans they have worked on all year to provide the best in live entertainment in San Jose. Private security is always a concern during these events, and even though organizers do their best to keep these events safe, the following precautions should be kept in mind.

1. Be Aware of Emergency Exits

Ever since the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas, music festival organizers have been publishing maps of the fairgrounds as well as the location of first aid stations and emergency exits. This information can often be found on the website of the festival and on the paper materials issued at the entrance. It is up to those in attendance to become familiar with evacuation routes.

2. Stick to Your Group

Festivals are more fun to enjoy among groups of friends, relatives, and associates, and they are safer as well. The key to promoting safety in numbers is to talk about what should be done in case of an emergency, and this conversation should include where to set rendezvous points, what to do in case of becoming separated, how to stay together, and how to react when confronted with certain situations.

3. Consider Worst-Case Scenarios

It’s crucial to think about worst-case scenarios and other possible situations before arriving at a festival. For example, events that feature massive beer tents and gardens are bound to attract a few individuals who become aggressive after drinking too much. Other festivals may feature bands that are followed by rowdy fans. Situational awareness boils down to acknowledging risks and threats that may occur. Furthermore, this awareness should extend to thinking about how to react in the face of danger.

4. Pack Only the Essentials

Not many festivals allow backpacks or purses these days, which means those in attendance should pay attention to the items they can carry. Bringing a fully charged mobile phone is a good idea. However, it should be kept on airplane mode or turned off to avoid draining the battery. Instead of carrying a wallet, it is better to keep emergency cash in a front pocket along with car keys and a list of emergency contacts written on paper and stored inside a plastic bag. Another good idea would be to bring a clip-on solar smartphone charger.

5. Know Where to Find Security Guards

Summer festivals may heighten the potential for security incidents. Find out where the professional San Jose security guards are located before the festival starts in case you end up needing their help.

If you need expertly trained security guards for a festival or another special event, get in touch with ADS Guards today. We have been protecting the Bay Area for nearly two decades. Call 1-800-794-1550 for a free quote.

5 Things Security Guards Can Do in the Event of an Emergency

A well-trained San Jose security guard can quickly become a key player in an emergency. Whether a minor emergency like a cut finger or a major one such as a shooting, security guards are often the first to respond to the scene and are trained to take appropriate action. A professional security guard can easily be the difference between life and death in a critical situation. Here are five things a security guard can be expected to do when an emergency occurs.

1. Increase Safety 

Medical emergencies can happen at any time. Security personnel are trained to perform first aid and CPR and properly use defibrillators until trained medical professionals arrive. Trained security guards are also willing and able to assess and respond to dangerous situations such as industrial accidents, suspect apprehension, and environmental emergencies. Simply providing directions to the public reduces stress and lowers the chances of an accident.

2. Confront a Violent Criminal 

The prevention of robberies, school shootings, and other violent crimes are in an armed security guard’s job description. Though prevention of violent occurrences may not always be possible, a security guard is uniquely qualified as a first responder by acting in a professional and reasonable manner. If a violent response to a criminal’s actions are called for, the security guard has the training and resources to do what needs to be done.

3. Keep Things Organized

Most people panic during an emergency. A trained guard from a security company in San Jose can be the voice of reason when a calm head is needed. Police and medical personnel may be on the way but have no idea of where to go when they arrive, and the security guard can point them in the right direction. Organizational skills are also needed during an emergency when the security guard is called upon to assess a fluid situation.

4. Act as an Expert Witness 

Security guards are often firsthand witnesses to events and are called upon to provide accurate information and details to law enforcement or in courtroom testimony. Depending on the type of emergency, criminal prosecution may rest primarily on the information the security guard obtains during the emergency. In medical emergencies, the security guard’s observations may facilitate treatment and assist in the proper diagnosis being made when minutes count.

5. Secure the Scene 

Effective control of the scene of an emergency can take many forms. Crowd control during an ongoing crisis is huge because it prevents injuries and crippling interference with first responders. If the emergency is a fire, essential fire control skills can be implemented to reduce the risk of burns and smoke inhalation while preventing the fire from spreading. The trained security guard may be the only person in the building doing what should be done and not making matters worse.

If you need to hire a security guard, get in touch with ADS Guards, a leading provider of private security. San Jose businesses can rely on our highly trained guards to assist in the event of an emergency. Call 1-800-794-1550 today for a free quote.