Officials should consider issuing a standard document to potential refugees to replace Syrian identity documents
The plan provides options that include biometrics equipment, mobile biometrics capability and issue smart cards

Recently, the Secure Identity & Biometrics Association (SIBA), a global leader on identity management policy and practice, released a plan that lists potential actions that decision-makers might take to address the threat of terrorists posing as refugees in the wake of the Paris attacks. The list comes on the heels of news reports and information that a number of the terrorists might have entered Europe posing as refugees, and that one of them was carrying a fake Syrian passport.

"Terrorist organizations are interested in subverting traditional methods of screening and vetting which rely on identity documents, fingerprints, and biographical data,” said Michael Dougherty, the SIBA Chief Executive Officer. “Identity documents of course have a role to play in vetting refugees and asylum-seekers, but there are so many fraudulent Syrian passports and national IDs in circulation right now, those documents cannot be considered reliable in establishing a person's identity. This combined with the lack of background information on many displaced persons who are fleeing conflict and persecution, has justifiably raised security alarms relative to the movement of Syrian refugees.”

Dougherty also pointed to numerous reports that there is a growing cottage industry for forged documents, and that ISIS itself is using passport stock to obtain false identities for operatives traveling to the West to stage terror attacks. "The ability of ISIS and other groups to supply operatives with false identification credentials represents a serious threat to the security of civilian populations. However, there are actions that governments can take to mitigate some of these threats."

The Plan Provides Options For Decision Makers That Include:

Provide Biometrics Equipment To Relief Agencies:

Governments should ensure that the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and other relief agencies that make first contact with those seeking refugee status have the funding and equipment necessary to capture facial images and iris scans in addition to fingerprints. The UNHCR has recent experience deploying such a capability in parts of Asia. Multimodal biometric capture should be 100% mandatory in order to baseline the identities of those whom relief agencies encounter, and to supplement biographical information. A recent article detailed how biometrics are being used in Syrian Refugee camps to prevent fraud. These same capabilities should also be used for screening and vetting purposes.

As there are literally millions of displaced persons flowing from Syria and the region, mobile biometrics is the only solution that can scale rapidly to establish effective identity management for the EU today. As proven by the UN earlier this year and from U.S. military operations in theatre, biometrically enrolling large populations for a variety of purposes is possible. Given the power, accuracy and mobility of state-of-the art capture devices, it can be also done quickly and effectively.

Deploy A State Of The Art Mobile Biometrics Capability In Europe:

The freedom of movement across traditional borders in the 26 countries which have abolished their borders (the Schengen Area) is a key feature of the European Union. This can constitute a challenge for law enforcement agencies as they encounter an unprecedented number of refugees from Syria and other conflict areas, and as ISIS seeks to inject terrorist operators from its large number of recruits into the flow.

The lack of adequate identity management tools on the ground for local agencies in Europe was recently evidenced when Belgian police apprehended one of the gunmen who took part in the Paris attacks and released him because they were unable to make a positive identification after checking his ID card. To help counter the problem, EU Member States should equip both national and local law enforcement agencies with multi-modal biometric capture devices for use with refugee populations. EU partners should work together to ensure that the data captured on foreign nationals in the Schengen Area can be matched to authoritative databases, including INTERPOL, shared between Member States and made accessible to law enforcement entities in real time.

While it appears that none of the Paris attackers were on Watch Lists, mobile biometrics can also enable law enforcement to find and apprehend such suspects after a critical event. Because latent prints, including partial latent prints, can be lifted from crime scenes and rapidly on-boarded to mobile devices, these tools can also be highly valuable in conducting investigations after critical events. This technique has helped to apprehend numerous perpetrators of IED attacks and other crimes in theatres of operation and can be easily brought to bear anywhere in the world. Moreover, as some of Paris attackers and many of new ISIS recruits may not be enrolled in Watch Lists but may have criminal records, the use and integration of mobile biometrics by local law enforcement overseas becomes all the more important.

US Can Utilize Existing Channels To Bolster Mobile Biometric Capabilities For Our Allies:

The United States, through a number of channels and programs can supply nations with mobile biometric capabilities described above. These channels include the Department of Defense Foreign Military Sales program for nations such as Greece and Slovenia, that are experiencing significant Syrian refugee traffic but likely do not have adequate resources to rapidly procure the needed biometrics tools and resources. Programs such as the State Department’s Antiterrorism Assistance Program can also be a suitable vehicle to bolster the biometric capabilities of our partners overseas. As we move forward, and the United States to continue to collaborate more closely with our European allies, the value of our interaction with these states can be greatly enhanced if the quality of the information being shared includes biometric data.

Issue Smart Cards For Refugees:

Officials should consider issuing a standard document to potential refugees to replace Syrian identity documents. Smart cards featuring an integrated circuit that contains a person's multimodal biometrics are readily available and variations on such cards have been used by the UN in other areas.

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Virtual Worlds Disrupt Building Security & Facility Management
Virtual Worlds Disrupt Building Security & Facility Management

From satellite imagery to street views to indoor mapping, technology has disrupted our past world. This has left us dependent upon new ways to visualise large spaces. This new world has brought many benefits and risks. But what does that mean for the security professional or facility manager today and what technologies can be used to secure buildings and improve facility operations? A Brief History Of 3D Technology Starting May 5, 2007 (inception 2001), Google rolled out Google Street View to augment Google Maps and Google Earth; documenting some of the most remote places on earth using a mix of sensors (Lidar/GSP/Radar/Imagery). The mission to map the world moved indoors May 2011 with Google Business Photos mapping indoor spaces with low cost 360° cameras under the Trusted Photographer program. In the earlier days, 3D scanning required a high level of specialization, expensive hardware and unavailable computing power With the growth of 3D laser scanning from 2007 onwards, the professional world embraced scanning as effective method to create digitised building information modeling (BIM), growing fast since 2007. BIM from scanning brought tremendous control, time and cost savings through the design and construction process, where As-Built documentation offered an incredible way to manage large existing facilities while reducing costly site visits. In the earlier days, 3D scanning required a high level of specialization, expensive hardware, unavailable computing power and knowledge of architectural software. Innovation during the past 8 year, have driven ease of use and lower pricing to encourage market adoption. Major investments in UAVs in 2014 and the commercial emergence of 360° photography began a new wave of adoption. While 3D scanners still range from $20K – $100K USD, UAVs can be purchased for under $1K USD and 360° cameras for as low as $100. UAVs and 360° cameras also offer a way to document large spaces in a fraction of the time of terrestrial laser scanners with very little technical knowledge.  Access to building plans, satellite imagery, Google Street View, indoor virtual tours and aerial drone reconnaissance prove effective tools to bad actors The result over the past 10+ years of technology advancement has been a faster, lower cost, more accessible way to create virtual spaces. However, the technology advances carry a major risk of misuse by bad actors at the same time. What was once reserved to military personal is now available publicly. 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A $250 USD 360° camera was used for the capture in VisualPlan.net software What Does This Mean For The Security Or Facility Manager Today? An often overlooked, but critical vulnerability to security and facility managers is relying on inaccurate drawing. Most facilities managers today work with outdated 2D plan diagrams or old blueprints which are difficult to update and share.Critical vulnerability to security and facility managers is relying on inaccurate drawing Renovations, design changes and office layout changes leave facility managers with the wrong information, and even worse is that the wrong information is shared with outside consultants who plan major projects around outdated or wrong plans. 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UAVs have been used for transport and delivery of dangerous goods, delivering weapons and contraband and have the ability to be weaponised to carry a payload.Investigating reality capture to help with accurate planning and visualization of facilities is well worth the time The Federal Aviation Administration has prevented UAV flights over large event stadiums, prisons and coast guard bases based on the risks they could potentially pose, but waivers do exist. Be aware that it is illegal today to use most of these technologies and downing a UAV, if you are not Department of Justice or Homeland Security, could carry hefty penalties. Facility managers must have a way to survey and monitor their buildings for threats and report suspicious UAV behaviours immediately to authorities. At the same time, it’s critical to identify various potential risks to your wider team to ensure awareness and reporting is handled effectively. Having a procedure on how identify and report is important. Investigating reality capture to help with accurate planning and visualization of facilities is well worth the time. It can help better secure your facilities while increasing efficiencies of building operations. Reality capture can also help collaboration with first responders and outside professionals without ever having to step a foot in the door. But secure your data and have a plan for bad actors who will try to use the same technologies for nefarious goals.

What’s New In U.S. Government Procurement For Security?
What’s New In U.S. Government Procurement For Security?

Last week, the Schedule 84 Suppliers Research Panel participated in reviewing the 2018 contracting year with the GSA Schedule 84 leadership team. Our panel group consists of experienced contractors and consultants meeting for a monthly conference call. Schedule 84 is the GSA Schedules Contract for Total Solutions for Law Enforcement, Security, Facilities Management, Fire and Rescue. Our opinions are part of a research program to provide valuable feedback to the GSA Schedule 84 program and on to the GSA central office. The director of GSA Region 7 Schedules Program, the Schedule 84 Branch Chief and the Category Manager Subject Matter Expert who manages our suppliers' panel gave us their full attention as we discussed the successes of the program, hot topics, problems and the future. We determined 2018 under the Schedule 84 team to be a year of innovative thoughts, cooperative effort and renewed enthusiasm Innovative Review Team We determined 2018 under the Schedule 84 team to be a year of innovative thoughts, cooperative effort, renewed enthusiasm and productive changes building upon the successes of 2017. There was high praise for the accessibility to the Schedule 84 staff. Their consistent quick response to questions and concerns, thinking outside the box and supporting the program by partnering with their contractors was much appreciated. There has been a renewed spirit of partnering to cooperatively bring the best to agency customers. It seems to be working as per the Center Director sales are growing for GSA Schedule 84. Advocating For The Security Industry In my experience, business development starts with the Administrator from Region 7 in Ft. Worth, TX. As the annual Schedule 84 Industry Day at the SSAC begins he is shaking every hand and passing out his cards looking folks right in the eye asking, “how can I help you?” They have the best practices and most organized paperwork. The SSAC director has chosen well in her staff and is hands-on in every endeavor to direct things along when challenges occur or to improve the program. The new 84 Branch Chief is knowledgeable, innovative, tireless and has been heavily involved in advocating for the security industry It continues with the center’s CASE Manager encouraging the contractors at events, visiting agency customers and promoting the GSA Schedules Program by helping coordinate the partnering. 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We presented from an industry perspective important fact on PACS system requirements, procurement planning, providing information on resources and further educating with panel discussions, individual presentations and amusing skits to over 300 Government agency staff and acquisition specialists. You can find some of the unedited recording of the PACS Reverse Industry Day Training on YouTube. Some changes included the creation of a new category of products/services Special Item Number (SIN) for Order Level Materials (OLM) GSA Schedules Program A hot topic about the GSA program for 2018 was also an issue for the prior year. The GSA Schedules Program is a streamlined contracting vehicle incorporating specific Federal Acquisition Regulations for more efficiently purchasing commercial items. Companies may apply per a continuous open season for a 5-year contract with three 5-year options to renew. Contractors are vetted for past performance, corporate experience and financial capability. 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Which Segments Are Under-Served In The Physical Security Industry?
Which Segments Are Under-Served In The Physical Security Industry?

Physical security technologies operate successfully in many different markets, but in which markets do they fall short? Physical security is a difficult challenge that can sometime defy the best efforts of manufacturers, integrators and end users. This is especially the case in some of the more problematic markets and applications where even the best technology has to offer may not be good enough, or could it be that the best technology has not been adequately applied? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable to reflect on instances when the industry may fall short: Which segments of the physical security industry are most under-served and why?