Tag: School Security

School Security

School Safety and Security Checklist

Every school administrator and school board is aware of the need for security protocols to protect students from shootings, but many either don’t know where to start or don’t know if they’ve done enough. It can seem like a daunting task, but there are resources to help school leaders create environments that discourage or significantly decrease the likelihood of school shootings. The need for intervention is critical. About 25% of mass shootings from 2000 to 2013 took place in schools, and among shooters 18 years or younger, 88% of their attacks were on their current or prior schools. School shootings aren’t limited to big cities; in fact, half of school shootings have taken place in small communities with 50,000 or fewer residents. Therefore, all schools must take precautions. The federal government offers the Federal School Safety Clearinghouse website, SchoolSafety.gov, which provides many resources for administrators, educators, parents, and law enforcement personnel to address issues of safety, security, and support in K-12 schools. Many school associations also provide support for schools, often offering local support and contact information to help schools develop their security and safety plans. At ZeroEyes, we recommend school administrators go through a detailed checklist to determine their strengths and their vulnerabilities, covering a multi-pronged approach including:  Policies, Procedures, and Training including emergency protocols (such as ALICE or LEAST) and frequent security technology testing and maintenanceVisitor Management Systems including badges and entrance controlsStudent and Staff Identification including background checks and identity cardsSecurity Systems including sufficient security cameras to cover all vulnerable areas, a gun detection system such as ZeroEyes integrated with the existing security cameras, and alarm systemsPhysical Barriers including the elimination of hiding places, barriers to prevent cars from having easy access to facilities, and locks on windows and doors to prevent penetration from outsidePersonnel (Roles and Training) including sufficient security to monitor security systems and training of staff and students about the importance of complying with security proceduresCommunication Plans including immediate contact of first responders and administrators at the first appearance of a firearm on campus and ongoing communication with law enforcement (features of ZeroEyes), an automated lockdown announcement for the PA system, and sufficient authorized personnel to declare lockdownCritical Relationships with Local Law Enforcement and First Responders including practicing and drilling emergency protocols with first responders on campus to give students, staff, and emergency responders the most comprehensive  experience  Such detailed plans should be considered at various layers: campus-wide, classroom, building perimeter, parking lots, adjunct buildings, etc.  Creating a thorough threat assessment protocol and developing a comprehensive security plan to deter mass shootings take time and attention to detail, but they are critically important for the safety of your staff and students. The ZeroEyes gun detection AI can be an important part of your security, but many other factors should also be in place. Contact us to see how we can help you create the safest environment for your students and staff.
Team ZeroEyes
Posted by Team ZeroEyes
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General

Can You Prevent a Mass Shooting?

The rapid rise in mass shooting incidents across the country can create a sense of fear in people’s minds that a shooting can occur anywhere at any time and there’s nothing anyone can do about it. This is absolutely not true. As a school administrator, property owner, or building manager, you can take steps to significantly decrease your location’s likelihood of being a target. What Do We Know About Shooters? The FBI produced a powerful document, A Study of Pre-Attack Behaviors of Active Shooters in the United States Between 2000 and 2013. From this in-depth review of all major attacks over this period, the FBI was able to identify specific demographics and common behaviors of mass shooters prior to an attack.  What did they learn? They learned that 94% of shooters were male and 64% were white. They learned that few shooters had adult convictions of violent crimes or abuse, but 62% had a history of acting in an abusive, harassing, or oppressive way (such as bullying or intimidation). Similarly, though only 25% had been diagnosed with mental illness, at least 62% had exhibited signs of mental illness that went untreated.  But perhaps the most critical piece of information the document discovered was that these men did not just snap – they planned their attacks in advance, and in some cases, far in advance. About 75% of shooters took between two weeks and two years to plan their attacks.  Shooters selected their targets, did surveillance, determined site access, studied schedules (especially if the shooter had particular victims in mind), evaluated the transportation and weaponry needed, considered the best method of attack to have the greatest effect, and more.  What Can You Do to Protect Your Buildings and Your People? With this information, school administrators, building supervisors, and property owners can do much to prevent attacks and target-harden locations against attacks. To “target-harden” means to strengthen the security of a building or location to reduce vulnerabilities and discourage targeting of that site for acts of violence. This can take many forms. At ZeroEyes, we recommend you do a complete risk assessment, with the help of your local law enforcement or a risk assessment specialist, to determine your location’s strengths and vulnerabilities. This thorough review should include security systems, physical barriers, technology, safety protocols, mass shooter emergency response plan in the event of an attack, and compliance. Keep in mind that the best security systems and safety protocols are worthless if they are not followed by your people. An intended mass shooter only needs one vulnerability to slip in and wreak havoc. Do students at your school open the door for a nice grandfatherly-looking man who knocks? Do your employees enter through the employee entrance without badges being checked? Is your security guard watching your cameras at all times?  This last point is where ZeroEyes can help. Even with the best security, human error can occur. With ZeroEyes gun detection integrated with your existing security camera system, our AI gun detection software will alert you and first responders the instant a gun is detected. Your security guards could miss it, but we will not, saving precious seconds when every second counts. Mass shootings only last an average of 10 minutes. If you know immediately that a gun has made it onto your campus, you can instantly implement your emergency response plan, giving law enforcement the opportunity to neutralize the threat quickly, decreasing or possibly preventing casualties. While you may not be able to entirely prevent a mass shooting, especially if a shooter is targeting specific victims, you can target-harden your facility, making a shooting less likely. And in the event that an attempted shooting occurs, have an emergency response plan prepared and have ZeroEyes to alert you and law enforcement immediately. Contact us to see how we can help you.
Team ZeroEyes
Posted by Team ZeroEyes
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School Security

Parents – Are Your Students Safe? Questions to Ask Your Children’s Schools

The many school shootings in recent years make it imperative for parents to be vigilant with regard to their children’s safety. Most school districts and college campuses have implemented some security protocols and equipment, but the question is, have they done enough? Below are some questions to ask your child’s school. Has the school district implemented ALICE training? ALICE stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, and Evacuate. This highly-respected nationwide program gives both staff and students tools to improve their safety in the event of a shooting.Does the school have security on site? If not, why not, and what alternative services have been engaged?What protocols are in place for checking children and visitors in and off campus? Are they regularly reviewed and drilled? Are they followed?What physical barriers exist to slow down active shooters or prevent vehicles from approaching too close to buildings or students? Are the barriers regularly maintained?What technology and security cameras are in place? Has a formal vulnerability assessment been done to determine any holes in the security protocols, barriers, buildings, or technology?Security technology and protocols are continually being improved. What is the school doing to remain constantly up-to-date and aware of the available safety options? Is there a regular plan for evaluating and updating existing security systems?Is there a budget item for yearly investment in improved security measures?What type of student mental health and wellness services are available on campus? How do students access them?What protocols are in place for students to report threats or concerning behaviors? What discipline measures are in place for students demonstrating threatening behavior?How can students and parents provide input in ways to continually improve the safety and security of the school environment?  The goal is to prevent shootings before they happen. Effective physical and technological barriers in addition to carefully followed safety protocols can make it difficult for bad actors to enter the campus. But experience proves that most school shootings are perpetrated by students themselves. This is why schools need both proactive measures – such as those that identify at-risk students before they act out – as well as defensive measures, in the event that warning signs have been missed. ZeroEyes AI Gun Detection system alerts first-responders, on-site security, and administrators immediately upon detecting a visible gun. With this information, safety protocols such as ALICE can be immediately implemented, wings of the building can be locked down, and real-time data about the shooter can be relayed directly to the first responders, using ZeroEyes technology, to end the threat quickly.  Your children need to be safe. Discuss these questions with the schools your children attend or may attend in the future. Parents are really the students’ first line of defense. By demonstrating to the school administrators that you are educated on the subject of security, you will be helping these administrators, who also desire to keep your children safe, to remain vigilant, and to constantly evaluate and enhance their security measures.
Team ZeroEyes
Posted by Team ZeroEyes
School Security

What Board of Education Members Need to Know When Looking at Gun Detection Technology

Over 187,000 students in grades K-12 have experienced school shootings since the Columbine High School massacre in 1999. School boards struggle to find the best methods of ensuring the safety of their students while balancing other issues such as accuracy, cost, privacy issues, and legal liability.  ZeroEyes provides school boards and school administrators with the balance of security, accuracy, cost effectiveness, and legality they need to keep their students protected.  ZeroEyes was developed and is maintained by former Navy SEALs. This is a critical distinction between ZeroEyes and other services that offer some degree of gun detection. We have the real-life, battle-hardened experience that delivers a depth of weapons understanding and emergency-response training that few, if any, security firms offer.  Our deep-learning artificial intelligence algorithms are designed by former military technology experts highly trained in weaponry and weapons identification. And because we specialize in gun detection, our system provides a level of accuracy that more complicated systems do not. ZeroEyes is designed to integrate into your current surveillance system, making it very cost effective. And our partnership with RapidSOS, a cutting-edge technology platform that provides a direct link to emergency services, allows us to send threat detection and surveillance data directly to 911. This technology ensures that first responders receive threat data immediately if ZeroEyes detects the presence of firearms. Our technology also gives ongoing real-time situational intelligence to law enforcement during the active shooter situation, while former soldiers personally direct the flow of real-time intel from our headquarters, partnering with first responders to neutralize the threat quickly. Some gun detection systems risk opening up the school to lawsuits because they indiscriminately scan individuals or provide facial recognition. These programs are under scrutiny for privacy law infractions and may lead to lawsuits. They also increase the risk of false-positives by misidentifying harmless objects as weapons, which can also lead to legal problems.  In a nutshell, when a board of education is looking for gun detection technology, they should look for the following criteria: Developers who are experts in the field of weaponry and emergency situations A system that specializes in gun detection, rather than offering multiple services of questionable quality A company that provides immediate warnings and ongoing, real-time data to first responders to help them neutralize the threat, along with real-time collaboration with experts in weaponry and emergency response A system that integrates into your current security system, thus providing cost effectiveness along with safety  Only ZeroEyes offers you all of this. Our mission is to ensure no one has to experience a traumatizing active shooter threat, especially children. Call us today to see how we can partner with you to keep your students and teachers safe.
Team ZeroEyes
Posted by Team ZeroEyes
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Overall Security

Determine Your Security Needs

Developing and implementing a complete facilities security plan includes evaluating multiple aspects, including access control, building design and infrastructure, exterior and interior vulnerabilities, security systems including both physical barriers and technology, safety protocols, and training and compliance. While it may seem a daunting task, a thorough risk assessment and the development and implementation of a comprehensive security plan is critical to keeping your people safe. 

Physical barriers are your first line of defense, and should start at the exterior of your property, as far away from your building as possible. Take a fresh look at your facilities by standing at the farthest corner of your property and looking at it as a criminal might. Walk all around the perimeter of your property. Is there easy access for cars and pedestrians, or have barriers been put in place to slow or limit access? Can people walk up to your building from anywhere, or do physical barriers like fencing limit approach to well-monitored walkways? Can cars park adjacent to the curb near your building? Are there cameras clearly placed where a bad-actor can see them? Are any areas not covered by camera surveillance? Are there hiding places or dark corners? Are there unguarded doors or open windows? 

These are just some of the questions you need to ask yourself about exterior security. Once you’ve done a thorough review of the exterior, do the same for the interior. This evaluation will include considering the building layout, possible entry points, hiding places, and areas of the building that should be secure. You also need to consider if employees are accidentally increasing security vulnerabilities. 

Entrance access is a major point of vulnerability for many companies. Are there physical or technological barriers that control entrance? Are doors and windows locked? Do employees allow others to come in the doors behind them? Are ID badges required for entrance? Is access restricted to more sensitive areas of the building?

There are numerous checklists available to help you evaluate the security of your facilities. There are also companies with highly competent evaluators whom you can hire to do the evaluation for you. FEMA offers a detailed Building Vulnerability Assessment Checklist and the USDA Physical Security Program also offers an assessment. Some of the questions on these lists, besides those mentioned above, include:

What is your target potential?
What kind of physical security systems and controls are presently used?
Do the available security resources, policies, and procedures meet the potential threat?
What is the prevailing attitude toward security in your company and how are security policies enforced?
Is there any access through utility paths or water runoffs? 

Some questions that could help prevent active shooter scenarios include: 

How old is your security system? (It is recommended that it be updated every 10 years, or when major new advancements in security are developed.)
Are cameras monitored 24/7? By whom?
Are cameras programmed to respond automatically to building perimeter alarms?
What is the quality of the images provided by the cameras, both during the day and in hours of darkness?
What resources are available locally and how rapid are the response times for fire, police and ambulance?
How will first responders and SROs communicate in the case of an emergency?
Are cameras installed with intelligent video systems that can monitor for threats or guns?

Security is not always convenient, and some education may be necessary to help your employees, staff, students, or clientele understand its importance. But by target hardening your facilities, you will be deterring active shooters and other malefactors from harming your people, creating a safe environment in which to work, learn, or relax.

Reach out to us here at ZeroEyes to find out how our gun detection AI technology can be added to your existing security cameras to help keep your people safe.

Team ZeroEyes
Posted by Team ZeroEyes
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Overall Security

Questions to Ask When Evaluating Security Systems for Your School, Office, or Business

Security systems are a part of your overall security strategy, which should include sufficient security resource officers (SRO), training of staff in safety protocols, comprehensive evacuation plans, and appropriate technology and physical barriers to target-harden your premises and deter potential threats. 

Unfortunately, a threat actor only needs to find one entry point, one weak link. In the case of an active shooter, seconds count. Current security systems are reactive; alarms go off only after the perpetrator breaks in. They often depend on desperate 911 calls from victims to alert authorities. It is far better to be proactive and identify a potential threat before shots are fired, to lock down the premises, and give law enforcement the critical intelligence they need to neutralize the threat as quickly as possible. 

Take the time to ask yourself critical questions in order to determine what you need to safeguard the lives of your people. 
Evaluation of your particular situation

What specific security concerns do you have? Make a comprehensive list of threats, both probable and improbable.
Who are potential threat actors: students? disgruntled employees? visitors to your location? Consider situations and locations that might pose opportunities for threat actors.
Do you have protocols and procedures in place? Are your staff and employees fully aware of safety protocols? Are they implementing them? Human error is often all a malefactor needs to get past security and cause harm. 

Physical premises vulnerability assessment

Do your parking areas and the exterior of your building have sufficient lighting?
Are there any bushes or other structures that offer cover for perpetrators and act as visual obstacles for cameras?
Are there sufficient locks and security bars on windows and doors? Are there alarm systems on these entrance points, with clear warnings to this effect?
For larger facilities, is it possible to lock down wings to prevent malefactors from moving about freely?
Are alarm systems connected to emergency response call centers?
Do you have sufficient security cameras to cover all entrances, halls, and rooms of your facility? Where could perpetrators hide inside your facility and how can you eliminate that hiding place?

Security efficiency assessment

Do your security cameras have a fail-safe system of alerting SROs, your administrators, and 1st responders the moment a firearm is detected?
 How quickly will the system alert SROs and the emergency call center that a threat has been detected? Security needs to be able to respond within seconds, even before shots are fired, in order to set into motion protocols that can lead people to safety and lock down the threat actor.
Does the system you are using have a secure communication system between on-site security and first responders? Those responding to the emergency need to be able to communicate and coordinate rapid action.
Will the system provide security with real-time intelligence so they know exactly who the threat actors are, where they are, and what they are doing at any moment?

These are just some of the critical questions you need to ask yourself as you evaluate your level of risk and the best technological and physical barriers as well as protocols you need to target-harden your school, business, or office and safeguard the lives of those who have been entrusted to you. 

As former Navy SEALs, we have dedicated our lives to using our hands-on combat experience to give you and your security personnel the military-level technology you need to win the war against violence in schools and the workplace. 

Our gun-detection video analytics technology layers onto your current security camera network, alerting authorities and administrators within 3 seconds of detecting a gun. ZeroEyes provides real-time tracking of threat actors, giving police and security the combat-level intel they need to quickly find and neutralize their target. Contact us here at ZeroEyes to discuss how we can help you.

Team ZeroEyes
Posted by Team ZeroEyes