The Future of Security

The Integration of Information Security, Integrated Systems Security and Physical Security
By Caroline Ramsey-Hamilton
This article was originally published as the cover story for Security Technology & Design Magazine, April 2004.

The single most important trend in security in the next twenty years will be the integration of various security elements such as information security, physical security and integrated systems security into a single security function. The development of this trend can already be seen in the increase in the number of Chief Security Officers (CSO), elevating the security director to a “C- Level” position alongside the CEO, CIO and COO. Chief Security Officers are appearing in companies like Oracle, Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, and General Electric.
Management consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton recently surveyed firms with more than $1 billion dollars in annual revenues and found that 54% of the 72 chief executive officers it surveyed have a chief security officer in place. Ninety percent have been in that position for more than two years.
Security has historically been an under managed and fragmented function in many organizations. After 9/11, security has become more and more important, and more expensive, because organizations are seeking a higher level of security than ever before. Many organizations are underfunded and don’t have enough money to implement every security safeguard – so how does an organization decide whether to put an authentication program in place to positively identify networks users, or whether they need to create a stand-off from the front of the corporate lobby? Proper allocation of the security budget is an important element supporting the need for holistic security programs.

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