Tenant Privacy and Security

The ongoing National Security Agency (NSA) scandal has renewed the debate between security and personal privacy. In case you missed it, the NSA used data mining technology to capture and store information pertaining to thousands of individuals. While these efforts were intended to prevent terrorist attacks, the issue has created significant backlash for the federal government as citizens felt it violated their personal liberties.

Property managers may not be tracking the behavior of specific individuals, but they do have their own security concerns to deal with. It’s important for them to work closely with tenants to ensure that premises are protected without violating their trust.

Communication remains essential

One of the most important things property managers can do is to clearly communicate security protocols. Building managers should make sure that occupants know which doors need to be locked at all times and the process for signing visitors in at the front desk so that any confusion can be avoided.

Security measures often extend beyond lock doors and a lobby checkpoint, though. Most office buildings utilize video surveillance, but this can be a sensitive issue as many individuals do not appreciate being filmed without their knowledge. In the business world, video evidence may contain proprietary information that tenants may not want to fall into the wrong hands. Facilities managers need to respect these concerns if they hope to keep occupants satisfied.

Proper communication can help prevent tension caused by cameras. Building managers should make sure that the areas under surveillance are clearly identified to occupants. Usually, these are restricted to common areas to avoid intruding into business operations. Tenants should also know who has access to the video and when it will be shared with the authorities.

Creating a comprehensive security strategy can also help property managers address various privacy concerns. This information should be easily available for employees so they can answer questions and handle situations appropriately.

Professionalism of security staff

Staff members’ actions will go a long way at easing concerns tenants have about the level of security within a building. Facilities managers contracting to security firms should meet regularly with supervisors to ensure they are respecting the rights of tenants. There is a fine line between protecting a property and being overly invasive, and a critical failure reflects poorly on the building owners as much as the security company. Taking steps to improve the friendliness and professionalism of security personnel can go a long way to increasing tenant satisfaction.

Have any tips for successful security protocols? Share them in the comments below.