As residential estates and complexes grow like weeds across South Africa, often promoting themselves as more secure than a stand-alone house, many are finding that close proximity to a neighbour or a guard at the gate doesn’t necessarily mean security. Even more are finding that putting up a few cameras doesn’t really accomplish much either.
It’s an old story, but securing your estate requires a plan. Not simply what the HoA thinks should be the plan, but something designed to specifically deal with real threats and vulnerabilities as they pertain to your estate. Of course, this requires spending some money and this is where the problems start.
Despite magnificent speeches and promises, the South African economy is in a bad way (putting it diplomatically) and nobody wants to spend money – even if they have some. Unfortunately, thanks to various factors, crime is the only booming economic segment in South Africa and the criminals are not about to take a break during a recession. Spending on security is therefore non-negotiable.
Perhaps the last sentence should read: spending wisely on security is therefore non-negotiable. In this year’s Residential Estate Security Handbook we look at various aspects of estate security, from the initial risk assessment through to body-worn cameras on guards as a way to improve the estate security operation, as well as focus spending on areas where there is a need.
Hi-Tech Security Solutions has been harping on about integration and open systems for years, but the point is still a critical one. With open systems, integration becomes simpler and you can integrate the benefits of different technologies to add to your defence posture. Of course this is easier said than done. One vendor’s idea of openness does not always match another’s. All the more reason to be careful, get good advice (not advice from pals), do a proof of concept and above all, know what you need before you even think of technology.
You could, of course, buy your full security technology solution from one vendor that guarantees everything talks to everything else. This is a great solution if you can afford it, and if you understand that you are committing to that vendor for the long term. Moreover, you are stuck with the products and solutions that vendor develops and new technology may not be able to integrate all that easily, if at all.
We can’t claim to have covered everything we needed to or wanted to in this publication, but we hope to provide estates with something to think about, helping them to ‘ask the right questions’.
If you have any comments or criticisms about this year’s Residential Estate Security Handbook, or any ideas on what we should include in future handbooks, please feel free to let me know on firstname.lastname@example.org
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