The act of securing our environment is similar to the art of movie editing: if the process is not seamless, the art suffers. Too often it is the lapses in security that get our attention while well-managed security operations go unnoticed.
As it should be. But as author Joel Jesus M. Supan stresses in The Art and Science of Security, there is much about the art and science of security that can be improved, especially in the business sector. Supan advocates a business model that fully integrates the principles of security as one of a company’s core functions, rather than as an afterthought. He promotes a unified approach to the security functions’ cycle of prevention, reaction and investigation so that it can effectively satisfy an organization’s basic security needs.
Supan offers a thorough walk-through of not only physical security systems but also security guard force management. All aspects of security, including environmental, information and personnel, are examined through the prism of his security framework. He reinforces this rigorous approach with a series of checklists that cover a wide range of activities, such as security patrol, visitor’s logbook, security guard operational readiness and performance evaluation and bomb threats.
At its best, The Art and Science of Security gives us some fresh ways to think about the complex interrelationships that exist between personal, community and business security needs. What are lacking are case studies that can help Supan’s readers visualize his concepts, especially in the areas where it’s easy to imagine the effects of unintended consequences. It is only in the author profile on the back of the book that readers get a sense of Supan’s reference points (his Phillipine-based security-related jobs). Just how much his training and experience in these various roles inform his beliefs would be good to know, providing more color to a book that at times tends to bog down with too much unsupported theory.