Fri | Feb 3, 2023

Physical security critical to protect digital assets

Published:Saturday | January 7, 2023 | 12:28 AM

THE EDITOR, Madam:

Physical security primarily encompasses protection measures aimed at protecting assets by using people, procedures and technology along with a combination of software and hardware components.

Hardware components such as lighting, fence, locks, access control, sensors, CCTV, barriers, gates, doors, building architecture, alarm systems and radios (not exhausted). Unsecured assets will be vulnerable to theft, damage and acts of sabotage e.g., a server room not properly secured by physical security measures may be accessed by someone with the intention to gain confidential information, delete files, install malware or to deny service. Physical security plays a very important role by assisting and aiding cybersecurity to perform its function without interfering.

With all the innovations in cutting edge technology, we simply cannot do without physical security to protect the assets of the organisation or in our homes. Physical security is basic, that is why we have good door locks, grilled doors and windows, a camera system and a defined perimeter. The foundation of deterrence is a critical component in any physical protection system, because, if the measures deployed are effective enough to deter an adversary, then an attack on the assets would be avoided.

Whereas physical security protects assets of the organisation, cybersecurity is concerned with protecting the network, systems and programmes that are propriety to the organisation from digital attacks. The IT platform is the life blood of an organisation. If the hardware components are not properly protected, the output will be severely affected, which will result in an underperformance or non-performance of the system. Physical security and cybersecurity have a symbiotic relationship. They rely on each other even though they have different functions, but their aim is the same – to protect.

Within any security architecture, physical security will converge with the IT platform to bring about the desired outcome for the facility. Physical security components are the bedrock of any protection system which ensures that even in a digitised space there will always be need for physical security professionals to maintain the essential components of the physical protection system.

CARLOS PIPHER