It is human nature to assume that those we meet business are genuine, have integrity and are well-intentioned. Sadly, in an age of intense business competition this may turn out to be fatally naive. The readiness of unprincipled individuals and businesses to commit industrial espionage, sabotage and vandalism appears to be on the increase globally. This impacts the victim organisation through damage to competitiveness, market advantage, reputation and staff morale. Therefore CFPA Europe has published the Guidelines “Protection of Business Intelligence” (no. 10:2016/S). These valuable guidelines will assist the organisation identify their vulnerabilities, detect the warning signals and take proactive action to implement those countermeasures and controls essential to secure the organisation’s operational and intellectual property.
At times of high market demand for metal as a result of worldwide economic developments, and the correspondingly high prices available for scrap metal, the theft of metal materials, particularly attached to or outside buildings, such as cable, roofing, raw materials and finished products, causes significant disruption to business and community assets and can even result in injury and death. The problem can be mitigated partly by rigourous controls on scrap metal trading but these should be supported by the type of security options discussed in the new guide published by CFPA Europe: “Recommendation for the control of metal theft” (no. 9:2016/S).
The managers of our community schools bear a heavy responsibility for the wellbeing, safety and security of pupils whilst in their care. Young minds are especially vulnerable if their experience of school life is characterised by a perception that their school lacks control over property and personal crime and a generally threatening environment.
Furthermore it goes without saying that the financial costs of inadequate risk management of criminal behaviour and natural hazards is particularly significant for the educational sector which, in most countries, experiences continuous budgetary pressure. Assaults on pupils and teachers, whilst thankfully uncommon, are on the increase and the assailant is usually legitimately on the premises rather than an outsider. The contents of schools – computers, musical instruments, video equipment etc, unavoidably invites petty theft and catastrophic loss through arson is an ever present risk.
Security risks are therefore wide ranging. The new CFPA-Guidelines “Security in Schools” (no. 8:2016/S) describe how they are manifested in schools and the sensible, practical and cost effective protection strategies and measures available to management.
Those responsible for the safe preservation of our cultural heritage bear a heavy responsibility, particularly as the buildings and objects in their custody, or under their control, are usually irreplaceable. Responsible custodians and conservators are generally conscious of the need to keep property safe from accident, mishandling, negligence and natural hazards and can be expected to recognise the importance of fire and security risk management but it is all too easy to overlook the need to have in readiness a current and rehearsed plan for the minimisation of loss or damage in the event of a catastrophic event such as a fire or flood. Prompt and effective action in such a crisis greatly increases the chance of valuable property being rescued or salvaged.
The CFPA-guideline “Developing Evacuation and Salvage Plans for Works of Art and Heritage Buildings” (no. 7:2016/S) will help establishments entrusted with art and heritage property such as museums, libraries, archives, and churches plan for the safe preservation of exhibits in the event of a catastrophic event such as a fire or flood, when timely action is critical. Adoption of the guidance will also have the incidental effect of mitigating risks to the building itself. Others with custody of art property such as warehouses, forwarding companies, galleries and trade exhibition centres will also find the document highly relevant.
On April 27th, 2017, the fourth international VdS-conference on fire protection systems will take place in Warsaw (Poland). International experts from insurance sector, industry and fire protection organisations will make presentations on the following topics:
- Legal and quality marks for fire protection products and systems
- Fire protection installation from the insurers’ point of view
- Sprinkler system design for storage facilities
- Water mist system technology, VdS 3188
- Fire Detection Systems in Power Stations
- Gas extinguishing systems – Guidelines and practical experiences
- Reliable fire protection by spark extinguishing systems
- Experiences from Fire tests with Lithium-ion-batteries
In addition there will be an exhibition over two days at the conferences site. At the evening of June 26th a get-together with possibilities to visit the exhibition will be held.
“This is already the 4th conference in Warsaw, and we will offer also in 2017 an exciting information forum for planners, installers and operators of fire protection systems, as well as for fire protection engineers, fire safety officers from all industries and loss prevention experts from the insurance industry”, Tomasz Afeltowicz-Schultz, Head of VdS offices Poland and Director of the event says. “And the conference exhibition with renowned specialist companies offers also this time the optimal opportunity for the professional exchange of fire protection experts.”
Conference languages are Polish and English with simultaneous translation.
The participants of the VdS-conference have also the possibility to visit the conference of the European Fire Sprinkler Network (EFSN) on April26th, 2017, at the same place at a reduced price.
You will find more information by visiting the conference-web site at www.vds.de/conference-pl
Publications of the German Insurers (GDV) for property loss prevention
The films visualize typical fire hazards in industrial and business enterprises. They explain recurring situations at risk inspections by fire insurers and illustrate complex fire protection issues. Effects of fires and appropriate measures to prevent damage are shown in the films.
The films can be used as an aid in advising policyholders in fire protection. They are also suitable for the training of staff and as a teaching tool in fire protection training.
4 films on one DVD on the topic of loss prevention in both German and English.
Film 1: Storage of combustible material close to buildings
Fire hazards through for example wooden pallets by an outside wall, fire spread in the building, effectiveness of a sprinkler system
Film 2: Fire loads in production and storage areas
Risks through combustible packaging and storage materials, benefits and impact of automatic fire extinguishing systems
Film 3: Machinery fire hazards
Machinery fires, flammable liquid fires, spray fire, effect of local protection systems (object extinguishing systems)
Film 4: Electrical devices
Fire hazards through battery chargers, testing and thermography of electrical devices
Picture format: 16:9 PAL
Running time: approx. 32 minutes
VdS 3401 : 2014-12 (01)
An international group of colleagues represented CFPA at the VdS-FireSafety 2016 (7th/8th December) – for the first time with an own CFPA exhibition booth. The CFPA booth was well visited throughout the fair. In total, CFPA could gain new contacts to about 170 international experts and exchange opinions and expertise about, among other things, certification, training and guidelines on a European level.
The 5th VdS-FireSafety set a new visitor record: It brought over 2,600 experts from 18 countries to the Cologne Exhibition Centre – 30% more than last year. As usual, it combined a large number of high-quality offers: six VdS conferences (“Fire Detection and Alarm Systems”, “Fire Extinguishing Systems”, “Smoke and Heat Exhaust Ventilation Systems”, “Structural Fire Protection”, “Urban Public Buildings” and the 40th seminar for Fire Protection Managers), the only fire safety fair in the Rhineland as well as a science and exhibitor forum with a total of 30 lectures on current research results and technical innovations – one of them explaining the work of CFPA Europe.
The experts at the CFPA booth came from many different countries and organizations, which gave visitors the chance to discuss a broad range of subjects. Among them were Kamila Kempna and Jan Smolka from GIT/Czech Republic, Mirna Rodriguez from Cepreven/Spain, Peter Stocker from Switzerland, Pia Mark from DBI/Denmark, and Tommy Arvidsson, Director of CFPA/UK. In addition, several further colleagues visited the fair: Jesper Ditlev from DBI/Denmark, Guillaume Savornin from CNPP/France, John Briggs from FPA/UK, and of course Ingeborg Schlosser from VdS/Germany, the organization hosting the fair. “Our participation with a booth was a success”, said Tommy Arvidsson directly after the two days in Cologne. “The number of visitors and the big interest has already led to the decision that CFPA Europe will return as exhibitor next year”.
“Many of our guests call the VdS-FireSafety their annual highlight”, sums up Lars Braun from VdS, organizer of the event. “The fact that we were able to support so many planners, engineers, architects, insurance and official experts and further specialists from all fire protection areas with comprehensive news, ideas and possibilities of exchange is pleasing our whole team.” On the basis of this success, VdS will again host the FireSafety Cologne in 2017 (on 6th and 7th of December 2017) and further expand the range of offers.
The Innovation Award of the world’s leading security trade fair, the “Security” in Essen, is considered to be the “Industry Oscar” for special achievements in loss prevention. // VdS received the golden award in the category “Services” for their comprehensive offers in the field of Cyber-Security specially for medium-sized companies.
The Security Innovation Award, granted by the world´s leading security trade fair, the “Security” in Essen, is known as the “Industry Oscar”. Every two years outstanding performances for optimum loss prevention are rewarded. This year, the golden and thus highest award in the category “Services” went to the emergent Cyber-Security services of VdS: the VdS-guidelines 3473, the first Cyber-security standard specifically for medium-sized companies, and the institutes´ further associated services such as the free Quick-Check, the fast Quick-Audit including attestation or the VdS-Certification of information security for companies.
Dr. Harald Olschok, Managing Director of the German Association of Security Industry (BDSW) and Chairman of the jury for the services sector, stated at the ceremony in the Essen exhibition halls: “For the Industry Oscar `Security Innovation Award´ it is not only technical finesse and innovative impulses that count. The positive consequences for people and society which result from these services are also decisive. Congratulations to the Cyber-Security Standards of VdS for our most vulnerable SMEs, they have prevailed among many high-quality entries from the USA, France and Great Britain. The VdS-guidelines 3473 make this sensitive issue for SMEs concrete and manageable.”
Dr. Robert Reinermann, CEO of VdS, explained at the ceremony: “Germany is the country most affected by cyber-crime worldwide. Economic damage caused by digital attacks in Germany alone is estimated at 45 billion Euros per year, 1.6 percent of the gross domestic product – and the number of attacks is growing rapidly all over the world! Particularly endangered are the often highly innovative, but unfortunately mostly poorly secured SMEs. Again and again cybercriminals gain access to patents, processes, plannings, prices, often to all sensitive corporate data. Digital knowledge theft threatens the survival of many small and medium enterprises. That’s why we offer to SMEs the guidelines VdS 3473 about digital securing with well-known practicality and easy tips for implementation for free. ”
The guidelines VdS 3473 contain all relevant information about the organisational and technical implementation of information security and provide the usual practical assistance, at a cost which is optimally manageable for SMEs. According to a study of the Alliance for Cyber-Security the guidelines VdS 3473 are already among the top 3-standards in the implementation of management systems for information security. All information on the comprehensive range of Cyber-Security services of VdS, Europe’s No.1 Institute for Corporate Security, can be found at www.vds-global.com .
Caption Gold: Handover of the Golden Security Innovation Award for the VdS standard for optimal Cyber-Security in the SME sector by Jury Chairman Dr. Harald Olschok, Managing Director of the German Association of the Security Industry (right): with the trophy VdS CEO Dr. Robert Reinermann, with the certificate VdS Manager for Cyber-Security, Markus Edel.
The week starts on November 26th with the event A Day at The Fire Station and during the week people are encouraged to conduct their own fire drill, download a mobile app to promote fire safety measures and participate in Nordic Fire Alarm Day on December 1st. This year’s theme is “You ain’t losing anything”.
The aim of Fire Safety Week is to improve fire safety of the whole country. Organized for the fifth time, with the theme “You ain’t losing anything”, this year’s aim is to show that improving fire safety is about small things which make a big difference.
– You won’t lose anything by taking care of your fire safety. Doing small improvements like checking the battery of your smoke alarm or discarding dodgy electronic wires are small acts but they can save your life, says Elias Kivelä, Campaign Coordinator at SPEK.
Fire Safety Week also raises the awareness on the relation of substance use and deaths caused by fire.
– 70 % of those who die because of fire are intoxicated. A particularly bad combination is smoking and drinking. Once intoxicated, the ability to act is slower than normal and accidents happen more likely, reminds Kivelä.
A Day at The Fire Station is a popular event especially in families with children. This year over 360 fire stations are participating in the event all over Finland providing visitors a glimpse to what it is like to be a firefighter.
– In fire stations people can try on firefighters’ gears, test how to use fire extinguishers and see how to exit from a burning room. A bit older participants can also test if they would pass the physical firefighters’ test, explains Kivelä.
Companies, daycare centers, schools and homes are encouraged to conduct a DIY Fire Drill not only during the week but all year round. Those who participate by registering their fire drill are eligible to win a 2,000-euro cash prize. The week ends with The Nordic Fire Alarm Day on December 1st.
– Every day there is a fire in eight houses. Our main goal is of course to reduce this number but also to promote skills that are needed in case fire occurs. Last year in all residential fires there were 440 cases where the smoke alarm wasn’t functioning and in 862 cases there were no smoke alarm at all even though having one is mandatory by law. Fire drills are also important so you know what to do if something happens – our aim is to have 100,000 registered fire drills, states Kivelä.
Since 2014 the campaign has included an app, “Kipinä” (spark), which guides the user through their own fire safety drill. It also reminds the user to check the functioning of their fire alarm on a monthly basis.
See two short videos of Fire Safety Week:
Check you smoke alarm – YouTube video:
Learn the fire exit – You ain’t losing anything – YouTube video: