Page 44 - Security Today, July/August 2020
P. 44

Backbone Support
Site protection requires training, vigilance and the latest electronic equipment
BOy John Nemerofsky
ur nation’s critical infrastructure serves as the backbone supporting activities at manufactur- ing plants to elementary schools. The network of power plants, water facilities, bridges and more are so vital that any significant disruption of their
operations could profoundly impact our nation’s economy, public health or safety.
The USA Patriot Act defines 16 critical infrastructure sectors. Protecting thousands of sites against both foreign and domestic terrorists requires training, vigilance and layers of the latest elec- tronic equipment and some of the most basic security activities.
It is best to stop intruders before they reach their targets. Many critical infrastructure facilities install perimeter fencing incorpo- rating fiber optic sensors. These sensors detect disruptions in light sent down the length of the cable. They integrate with software
controlling security cameras, including low-light infrared devices, to provide first responders with live video of attempted breaches. Waterfront properties discourage divers by using the same type of fiber cable woven into anchored, stainless-steel rope fences. Trees along the perimeter should be removed or regularly trimmed so they don’t allow intruders to scale barriers.
Terrorists have successfully used vehicles to deliver explosive payloads. A 15,000-pound truck traveling at 50 miles per hour can be stopped by fencing made of the same steel cable used to catch fighter jets landing on an aircraft carrier.
Also, fortified gates with an installed video intercom enable a security officer to see and have a two-way conversation with vehicle drivers before remotely opening the barrier. A card reader can be either separately mounted or embedded in the intercom allowing employees to use a cardkey to enter without assistance.
Extra lighting around the perimeter acts as a deterrent to would-be attackers and enables patrolling guards to see better at

   42   43   44   45   46