The concept of crime prevention has developed in many countries all over the world and it has become clear that there are no easy solutions to the problem. The 2003 ISS National Victims of Crime survey concluded that South Africans are much more fearful of crime today than they were in 1998.
Crime is therefore, unfortunately, part of our everyday lives and it is imperative for individuals and businesses alike to take steps to try and combat the current situation. Chubb Security recommends home and business owners a number of points to bear in mind when securing their respective environments against intruders. In light of the festive season fast approaching, these tips cannot come at a better time.
* Ensure quality locks are fitted to external doors.
* Security gates should be fitted, if possible, to external doors, especially sliding patio doors which can be removed from their runners easily by intruders.
* Window/burglar bars should be internal and sturdy but it is essential to have sufficient escape routes in case of fire.
* Ensure you have an internal monitored alarm installed.
* In the case of a home and if possible, include an internal security gate dividing sleeping quarters from the living area.
An internal alarm should include door magnets, glass-break detection, passive infrared detectors as well as fixed panic buttons in all main areas. In the home environment, these should be most prevalent in the bedrooms, kitchen, lounge and at the front door. It is also a good idea for the domestic staff to carry remote panic buttons on their person in areas outside of the house such as the driveway, garden or laundry area.
Even though car hijacking seems to be on the decline, Chubb also has some recommendations for motorists.
Your vehicle should be in a mechanically sound condition at all times. This should include enough fuel in the tank and a spare wheel that is regularly maintained. After all, you are at your most vulnerable during a breakdown
* Your vehicle should have a lockable fuel cap.
* It is advisable to have an immobiliser fitted to your car. If you can afford the added expense, have an alarm fitted as well.
* Carry a steering-wheel or gear lock and use it whenever you leave your car.
Chubb, a world leader in security and fire protection services is made up of four divisions in South Africa, namely Chubb Electronic Security, Chubb Integrated Systems, Chubb Guarding and Chubb Fire Services which incorporates Angus Fire. The company has combined 185 years of safety expertise with world class state-of-the-art technology and a highly skilled work force to provide customers with absolute confidence in their security systems and services. Chubb's national footprint and ability to integrate various security services, combined with ongoing innovation, is clearly a key differentiation from local and international competitors.
In July 2003 Chubb Plc, the holding company for Chubb SA, became a subsidiary of United Technologies Corporation (UTC), a $28,2 billion global NYSE listed organisation. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Connecticut, in the USA, is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the commercial building industry and the military and commercial aerospace industry. Including Chubb, UTC has seven operating companies, namely Carrier, Hamilton Sundstrand, Otis, Pratt & Whitney, Sikorsky Aircraft and UTC Power.
Acting group managing director
Stephen Mundy joined Chubb United Kingdom (UK), Ireland and southern Africa as finance director in March 2001. He was recently seconded to Chubb South Africa (SA) as acting group managing director while still maintaining his financial directorship of the overseas organisation.
Mundy has 20 years international experience in the UK in both the financial and information technology arenas. He was the senior finance director of Madge Networks, a $500m global computer networking organisation and thereafter joined the Armature Group, a United States- (US) and UK-based computer software company as chief financial officer.
Mundy brings a wealth of knowledge to the South African operation and many of the positive changes the company is enjoying are due to his input. Numerous projects are in the pipeline to re-engineer the local organisation as Chubb Security continues in its quest to reduce churn, grow revenue as well as grow the business organically. Most of these projects will be unveiled in due course.
Black Economic Empowerment (BEE)
Entrepreneurial spirit, funding and skills are the keys to unlocking economic wealth in South Africa. Chubb Security believes BEE has become a business imperative in South Africa and has therefore identified BEE as a critical element of adding value to the growth of an organisation. There are many reasons for this but the most important is that the growth or decline of the SA economy is inextricably linked to the economic upliftment and growth of a strong middle class and the eradication of poverty.
In addition, Chubb Security is making huge strides in developing the internal aspects of the BEE initiative required by all of South Africa's blue chip organisations. The company has mapped out a strategy to conclude a deal on the shareholding aspect of a BEE partner, the details of which will be announced shortly.
Chubb Security was recently nominated as one of the country's top performers in its economic sector for 2003 and qualifies for inclusion in the 2004 National Edition of South Africa's Top 300 Companies. In addition, two divisions within Chubb SA scooped coveted titles at the annual Professional Management Review (PMR) awards ceremony. In the Security Services category, Chubb Electronic Security was presented with the Diamond Award (1st) for Armed Response as well as the Gold Award (2nd) for its Alarms offering. Chubb Integrated Systems was voted 3rd overall in the Camera Surveillance and Access Control section, earning it a Silver Award.
Chubb Security believes in community upliftment and social responsibility and the sponsorships the organisation has become involved in are testament to its strong BEE, disabled and gender equality policy.
Chubb Cricket Challenge
Chubb Security recently donated R300 000 to the Gauteng High Schools Cricket Challenge competition. One hundred and thirty-eight high schools participated in the preliminary rounds of the Chubb Cricket Challenge which commenced in September this year. The final was held on Saturday, 9 October at Wanderers Stadium where Gauteng's top eight teams took to the pitch.
The sponsorship has not only enabled future cricketing stars to shine and realise their dreams, but youngsters now have access to training and coaching programmes as well employment through cricket coaching and other courses. With this sponsorship, strong emphasis has been placed on the development of academic, cricketing and people skills among the youth in all areas of the community.
This sponsorship further endorses Chubb Security's strong belief in the empowerment of all individuals in the community. The organisation is already involved in numerous other sponsorships including 'Take a Girl Child to Work'.
Crime Prevention in Schools
Another of Chubb Security's contribution to the community was the sponsorship of a conference to emphasise the importance of crime prevention in schools. In light of the tragic Leigh Matthews abduction and murder as well as the spate of attacks on teachers at schools, Chubb Security invited a group of practitioners, experts and authorities to look at the security risks in schools and discuss a way forward in implementing safety measures and security solutions for both educators and learners alike.
Zoo Lake Satellite Police Station
Chubb Security has donated R200 000 to ensure the safety and security of visitors to Zoo Lake, one of Johannesburg's 10 flagship parks. A once run down and derelict building it is in the process of being revamped and will soon become home to a satellite police station and community centre. In addition to providing the funds to upgrade the building, Chubb Electronic Security (CES) will use the building as a stand off point for its vehicles that patrol the suburbs surrounding Zoo Lake.
Health and safety policy
United Technologies Corporation (UTC), the holding company for Chubb Security has a stringent policy when it comes to health and safety. In view of this, in excess of R15 million has been invested in safety equipment to protect its reaction officers (RO) within the division of Chubb Electronic Security (CES). This initiative follows an escalation in the number of incidences of serious injury and of death experienced by the company's ROs in the latter part of last year.
Choosing your security service provider
When choosing a security company, be it for home or business premises, Chubb Security has the following advice:
* Note which companies' signs are most prevalent in your area. Those with the most signs are more likely to have a better service infrastructure in the area.
* Ask the company sales representative how many response vehicles the organisation has in your specific area and where their stand-off points are.
* Inquire about the company's backup vehicles and what their support infrastructure is should the backup vehicle be at another call-out.
* Check the company's average response times to signals. A reputable company will react within an average of five minutes or less.
* Check that the company's monitoring centre is approved by the SA Intruder Detection Systems Association.
* Ask if the company's staff is registered with the Security Industry Regulatory Authority and how they are trained.
* Ask about value added services such as holiday patrols.
For more information contact Sydney Mbhele, Chubb South Africa, 011 761 7000, [email protected]
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