An expanding outreach and programming targeted especially to international visitors are among the ways ASIS International is seeking to attract more global attendance than ever to its 63rd Annual Seminar and Exhibits, which will take place between 25-28 September in Dallas, Texas.

In addition to returning, long-time international visitors, ASIS International is looking to expand global attendance. One initiative is the International Buyer Program (IBP), a joint government/industry effort, which brings thousands of international buyers to the United States for business-to-business matchmaking with U.S. firms exhibiting at major industry trade shows, including this year’s ASIS International annual seminar and exhibits.

ASIS 2017’s participation in IBP provides attendees access to a global network of security professionals, qualified international buyers, representatives and distributors. When attendees join an IBP delegation through their local U.S. Consulate or Embassy, they can take advantage of special registration prices – 50 percent off the ASIS member rate – and other benefits only available to IBP participants.

Strengths Of Annual ASIS Show

“International” has long been an emphasis for ASIS, as well as part of the organization’s name. ASIS International is the largest global organization for security management professionals with 242 chapters and 35,000 members worldwide.

Godfried Hendriks, ASIS secretary, will be among the long-time ASIS members welcoming new international visitors to the show. He has been involved in the ASIS organization for more than 25 years and is a member of the Benelux Chapter.

Godfried Hendriks, ASIS secretary, will be among the long-time ASIS members welcoming new international visitors to the show

The ASIS Annual Seminar and Exhibits in the United States is unique, says Hendriks. “If you look at the other events, they are either a good trade show or a good conference,” he says. “The strength of the annual ASIS show is that it combines an incredibly large trade show and a great conference program. That’s the unique thing I haven’t seen anywhere else.” This year, the show will be even better, given the ASIS organization’s efforts to maximize the benefits of both components. For example, there will be more time between conference sessions to attend the trade show and meet suppliers, and Monday will be a conference-only day.

Local Knowledge, Global Network

Educated as a mechanical engineer, Hendriks unexpectedly found himself in the security profession in 1986 and eventually made his way to the local Benelux Chapter of ASIS International, which helped him get a “flying start” in the security field. A decade or so later, he became a volunteer leader in the chapter and has been returning the favor ever since. Currently, Hendriks is a managing consultant of his own company, GOING Consultancy in Alkmaar, the Netherlands, advising both local and multinational companies, industry organizations, public services and county authorities on security and crime prevention.

“The most important thing about being a member and a volunteer leader of ASIS International is the networking,” says Hendriks. “There is less need to spend hours and weeks investigating things and getting information when all the information you need is a phone call away from another member. I am passionate about the organization and what we can do to help each other. “

The Benelux chapter numbers more than 300 members. Other large European ASIS chapters include the “flagship” United Kingdom chapter with about 800 members, and also large and active chapters in Sweden, Germany and Spain, among others.

“What you see globally, in the different countries, is that ASIS members are a sampling of the highest security professionals from those countries, including representatives of large multi-national companies,” says Hendriks. “The organization combines local knowledge with a global network of professionals.”

ASIS 2017’s participation in IBP provides attendees access to a global network of security professionals, qualified international buyers, representatives and distributors
The “flagship” European ASIS International Chapter in the United Kingdom will again be well represented at this year’s Annual Seminar and Exhibits

Joining The ASIS International Family

In addition to the ASIS International Annual Seminar and Exhibits each year, Hendriks says he also attends IFSEC and some of the national trade shows in various countries. Also, there is a yearly ASIS European conference; earlier in 2017, it was in Milan, Italy, and it is planned next year in The Hague, Netherlands. Hendriks has attended the ASIS annual gathering in the US every year since 2006.

 “Many people in other fields who work at various companies, even competitors, don’t often speak to each other,” says Hendriks. “In the security profession, people are so willing to speak to each other, to meet regularly and to share information on the most successful ways to prevent crime and reduce losses.”

International visitors have participated in the ASIS annual seminar for years; there were 109 countries represented at last year’s event. A “Global Networking Lounge” serves as a gathering place for international visitors. Long-time international attendees are aware that first-time visitors may be overcome with the size of the show and become “lost.” Therefore, long-timers remain on the lookout for people who need guidance. “We want all our members and volunteer leaders to reach out and introduce new attendees to themselves and other people, so they can get the most out of the experience,” says Hendriks. “We want them to feel welcome and become part of the ‘family.’”

Tailoring And Translating ASIS Sessions

Some of the sessions are tailored to an international audience, such as the “Top Global Threats Affecting the Security Profession” session. Other sessions will cover international topics such as human trafficking, terrorism, and the security risks of the European migrant crisis.

Language isn’t generally a problem for ASIS visitors, who mostly speak and understand English (the “international language of business.”) However, there are Spanish and Mandarin translators, and delegates from various countries may also provide their own translators.

"Many international visitors become regular, if not yearly, visitors after their first visit to the show"

“Come and see for yourself – it’s really worthwhile”: This is Hendriks’ message to security professionals all over the world. “Many international visitors become regular, if not yearly, visitors after their first visit to the show,” he adds. Hendriks notes that time zone differences make the afternoon and evening hours at ASIS especially conducive to a more relaxed atmosphere for security professionals to meet, network and exchange information. (Their offices are already closed because of time zones, so there are no distractions of trying to keep up with daily issues back at the office.)

For anyone who cannot attend the annual meeting in person, ASIS International is providing “Global Access Live,” a streaming service featuring select sessions worldwide – three sessions on Monday, four on Tuesday and three on Wednesday.

Enterprise Security Risk Management

ASIS International has embraced Enterprise Security Risk Management (ESRM) as a driving global strategic priority that unifies its programmes and concepts. ESRM covers both traditional security issues such as loss prevention and terrorism, as well as topics such as brand protection, business continuity, corporate espionage, cybersecurity, information security, resilience and white collar crime. ESRM is both a philosophy and a management system, aimed at using globally established risk management principles to help security professionals – ASIS members – manage the variety of security risks facing their organizations. ASIS 2017 will include more than a dozen sessions focusing on ESRM.

Also in Dallas, ASIS will launch an effort to expand the “globalisation” of its popular topic-specific councils, including the Retail Security Council, the Hospitality/Entertainment Council, and the Physical Security Council (there are 34 in all). The initial focus will be on expanding participation in Latin America.

Download PDF version

Author profile

Larry Anderson Editor, SourceSecurity.com

An experienced journalist and long-time presence in the US security industry, Larry is SecurityInformed.com's eyes and ears in the fast-changing security marketplace, attending industry and corporate events, interviewing security leaders and contributing original editorial content to the site. He leads SecurityInformed's team of dedicated editorial and content professionals, guiding the "editorial roadmap" to ensure the site provides the most relevant content for security professionals.

In case you missed it

Highlighting The Importance Of Security Integrations And Alliances
Highlighting The Importance Of Security Integrations And Alliances

Most technology companies have one goal in mind: to provide customers with high-quality, affordable products that can efficiently help streamline operations. Whether it's surveillance cameras, video management software, access control technology or any other type of security device, today's leading organizations invest in expertise in these product segments and strive to produce the highest quality solutions. To effectively fulfill this task, technology providers are always searching for emerging components to make their products and services even stronger. Oftentimes, a key aspect necessary to build a comprehensively robust solution involves finding like-minded partners that share a common goal and are willing to work together to create an integration that increases insight and intelligence.The interoperability between systems, devices and different types of applications should be intuitive and fast Key Factors For Security Integrations A basic factor in a partnership is openness. For an integration to perform seamlessly for the end user, the platform through which the technologies converge must follow standard protocols, easily operate with other platforms, allow freedom and customization, and provide adaptability. The interoperability between systems, devices and different types of applications should be intuitive and fast, enabling more time to be spent on analyzing critical data and responding to security events. The puzzle of a complete security solution contains many pieces, and it's often necessary to fuse together aspects from various providers to create a best-in-breed technology offering. When organizations collaborate, the end result is a simplified solution with an increased level of value. As threats become more severe and complex, customers demand solutions that combine different security and business elements into a single interface that can address a wide variety of risks.  A unified security system requires a strong collaboration between technology providers and integrated solutions Interconnected Security Devices Users used to only look at specific security devices - such as cameras or door alarms - as each having a strong, autonomous purpose, but now, every device plays an important interconnected role. And the progression of the Internet of Things (IoT) has made this transition even easier, as maintaining a consistent and uniform communication and interconnectivity between devices has now become the norm. The IoT has also made it so that partnerships must not only exist between manufacturers, but also within the customer's organizational structure. Although exceptionally beneficial, the IoT brings with it an increased amount of cyber vulnerabilities. As security systems are networked to increase flexibility, the door is opened to a number of potential threats that could compromise the entire enterprise. This risk highlights the need for an internal partnership and knowledge sharing between a company's physical security professionals and its IT team. IT experts should be pulled into security decisions and positioned as collaborative partners to assist with software updates, data safety protocols and solving complex network challenges, ultimately leading to a more cyber secure solution.Partnerships are beneficial to both the companies involved and their customers Knowledge Sharing And Learning Aside from cybersecurity, the latest prominent security attacks and events have focused primarily on soft targets, such as schools, concerts or shopping malls. This has caused many technology providers to venture into different vertical markets, and strong partnerships streamline this crossover. Innovators can extend their geographic reach and purpose through integrations with other like-minded manufacturers or integrators to add new levels of functionalities. Of course, a partnership cannot operate properly and to the best of its ability without a core component: learning. In today's evolving business and risk environment, knowledge is critical. A shared knowledge base can open up new opportunities and lead to the strengthening of security across many levels. A truly powerful, unified security system requires a strong collaboration between technology providers and integrated solutions. Partnerships are beneficial to both the companies involved and their customers, and the results created through these alliances can reach far beyond a user's expectations, offering enhanced flexibility and extensive safety options.

What Are The Security Challenges Of The Hospitality Market?
What Are The Security Challenges Of The Hospitality Market?

Hospitality businesses work to provide a safe and pleasant customer experience for their guests. Hotels offer a “home away from home” for millions of guests every day around the world. These are businesses of many sizes and types, providing services ranging from luxury accommodations to simple lodging for business travelers to family vacation experiences. Hospitality businesses also include restaurants, bars, movie theaters and other venues. Security needs are varied and require technologies that span a wide spectrum. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the security challenges of the hospitality market?

How SecuriThings Boosts Cybersecurity Across Multiple IoT Devices
How SecuriThings Boosts Cybersecurity Across Multiple IoT Devices

As Internet of Things (IoT) devices go, networked video cameras are particularly significant. Connected to the internet and using on-board processing, cameras are subject to infection by malware and can be targeted by Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. Hacking of cameras also threatens privacy by allowing unauthorized access to video footage. The performance of hacked cameras can be degraded, and they may become unable to communicate properly when needed. Ensuring cybersecurity is a challenge, and the fragmented structure of the video surveillance market contributes to that challenge. A variety of companies are involved in manufacturing, integrating, installing and operating video systems, and cybersecurity threats can enter the picture at any stage. “It’s not always clear who is responsible,” says Yotam Gutman, vice president of marketing for SecuriThings, a cybersecurity company. “However, the only entities who can ensure cybersecurity are the security integrator and the service provider. They will bear the financial pain and are willing to pay for cybersecurity. An extra $1 or $2 per camera per month is not expensive.” SecuriThings’ “lightweight software agent” runs in the background of video cameras, sending information to an analytics system in the cloud IoT Device Security Management At the recent IFSEC trade show in London, SecuriThings unveiled its IoT Device Security Management (IDSM) approach to enable integrators to ensure cybersecurity. Founded in 2015, the company has around 20 employees in Tel Aviv, Israel, and operates a sales office in New York City. SecuriThings’ “lightweight software agent” runs in the background of video cameras, collecting metadata on camera processes and connections and sending information back to an analytics system in the cloud. Drag-and-drop deployment enables a camera to begin generating data within seconds and requiring only two mouse clicks. The cloud system analyzes data, pinpoints abnormalities, identifies new users, detects multiple entry attempts and tracks other camera processes to identify any cyberattacks. It monitors all devices, gateways, users and APIs to detect threats in real-time and mitigate the threats based on a pre-determined security policy. Machine learning tools also analyze more subtle activities that can indicate insider abuse. For example, a user support center can identify if cameras are being accessed improperly by employees, thus preventing insider abuse. Certified Vendor Agnostic Software SecuriThings is working with camera manufacturers and video management system (VMS) manufacturers to certify operation of its software agents with various camera models and systems. Working through integrators, such as Johnson Controls, is the fastest route to market, SecuriThings has determined. The system can be added after the fact to existing installations for immediate monitoring and remediation, or it can easily be incorporated into new systems as they are launched. “We have a strong sales team in the United States focusing on bringing the technology to more local and national integrators,” says Gutman. Certification ensures SecuriThings’ software agent can be installed in most modern camera models without negatively impacting operation; the software is vendor agnostic. Another eventual route to market is to work with camera manufacturers to install the SecuriThings software agent in cameras at the factory. In this scenario, the system can easily be “clicked on” when cameras are installed. The SecuriThings cloud system generates a dashboard that tracks system activities to identify any cybersecurity threats IoT Security Operations Center SecuriThings operation is transparent to the VMS, and the company works with VMS manufacturers to ensure the code operates seamlessly with their systems. Cloud analytics generate a dashboard that tracks system activities, and/or a managed service monitors the system and notifies customers if there is a problem. “We monitor it from our IoT Security Operations Center, a fully managed service that ensures the real-time detection and mitigation of IoT cyber-threats,” says Gutman. “We found that end-customers don’t have the manpower to monitor the system, so our experts can guide them.”Access control and cloud-based access control will be the next systems under cyberattack, and they are almost as vulnerable" A benefit for camera manufacturers is the ability of a system like SecuriThings to “level the playing field” on issues of cybersecurity, says Gutman. The approach provides a higher level of cybersecurity confidence for integrators and users, including those using cameras that have previously had cybersecurity problems such as “back door” access. SecuriThings has certified its software for use with Hikvision cameras and is in the process of certifying with Dahua, says Gutman. “Western manufacturers say their products are more secure, but we can help all camera manufacturers prove that they are just as secure,” says Gutman. “Integrators and users can log into a device and see all the activity.” Securing Connected Devices From Cyber Threats Beyond video, SecuriThings’ products target the full range of connected devices in the Internet of Things (IoT). The SecuriThings security solution enables real-time visibility and control of IoT devices deployed in massive numbers in smart cities, physical security, building automation, home entertainment and more. Video surveillance is an early focus because of market need, an opportunity to gain traction, and the critical nature of security applications. But the challenges are much broader than video surveillance. “We are seeing similar risks to other devices,” says Gutman. “Access control and cloud-based access control will be the next systems under cyberattack, and they are almost as vulnerable. If you can disable the access control system, you can cause a lot of problems.” Other connected devices that could be at risk include building automation and heating and cooling (HVAC) systems.