How to Conduct an Effective Building Security Assessment

Buying or constructing is a building is quite a tough task in itself. If you think that you don’t have to do anything after completing the construction, you are wrong. There is a very important thing called the building security assessment when it comes to making your building safe.

The results of this assessment define a lot of things like the utility of the building, etc. If you look at this situation broadly, the building security assessment defines the overall outcome of your investment. So you need to keep several important things in your mind before performing this assessment.

This article is going to make you familiar with all the important things that you should keep in mind during this assessment. All those who are willing to give this assessment a try and have no idea about it should read the whole article carefully.

Here, we will discuss the fundamentals of building security assessment of a large building like a 30-story building or even more. 

Building security assessment in brief

Before going further, we thought discussing the building security assessment, in brief, would give a better idea about the topic. Building security assessment is a kind of test that is performed on the building to know about the possible threats.

The anticipated threats can be anything ranging from infrastructural risks, financial risks, and many other things. This kind of assessment helps the building owners a lot in knowing about the type of work that can be done in the building.

As it plays a major role in the functioning of the building, the importance of the test increases further. In the next section, we are going to talk about the important factors to keep in mind while performing this assessment. 

Equip yourself with the pre-requisites

Every building security assessment starts by testing the basic facilities in the building. Basic facilities are those that support the building and they include:

So, these are the things that you should check first if you are performing such an assessment. Before you go on testing the building, having some essential information about the building would be really helpful. Here, we are going to talk about that required information. Let us have a look at it.

At first, go to the owner and ask for a copy of the whole building from the owner. This copy should include every detail about each floor of the building. 

And the go for the diagrams explaining the BMS control network, electric power supply, communication means, water supply systems.

Now that you are roughly aware of the building infrastructure, you should get information about the facilities that can be controlled manually too. Facilities like cooling, heating, etc. can be controlled manually too. That is a very essential feature of building infrastructure. In situations when there is no electricity or other similar damage, taking over the manual control can be really convenient. 

After that ask for information about CCTV. Here, you should ask for all the essential information like the vendor and the process of recording. 

Once you succeed in getting all these pieces of information, you are now ready to start the building security assessment. 

Starting your assessment

Now that you have got all the essential information about the building, this section of the article is going to tell you about going on with your assessment. Look at each sub-section for step by step guidance on this topic. 

The electric supply

This is the backbone of the modern building. Almost all the facilities inside a building rely on electricity. Any inadequacy in this matter can be a nightmare for the owner. Once you understand the electric supply of the building, you can pinpoint every weakness and advantage of that building. 

At first, locate the primary power entering the building. While examining this situation, you should know if there is a single entry point or there are multiple points. After getting this information right, you should focus on the back-up electricity supply of the building. If there are generators for this purpose, you should check the condition of those generators. 

Water supply system and the wastewater management

Water is one of the most important things in our lives. Not only because we drink water but there are several other essential indirect usages as well. Having a clear idea about this situation is going to help you a lot.

Gather information about the water entry points and the outlets. Check whether there is one entry point or more. You should check the exit for the wastewater in the same manner. 

Are there means that could help you in controlling these systems manually in adverse situations? Check if there are any suspended pipes and if yes, have some information about the maintenance of those pipes. 

The communication infrastructure

The majority of communication means are dependent on the internet nowadays. This is the main reason behind checking the internet supply in your building. While you are examining it, take a look at the internet fibre trunk of the building.

Check if there is one fibre trunk or more. If there are multiple trunks, see whether they are on opposite sides of the building or on the same side. Check for the possibility of unauthorised access to that supply. 

The BMS (Building Management System)

A building management system is one of the most essential things of a building especially a commercial building. All the things like cooling, heating, ventilation fall under this category. Having precise information about it will help you a lot in the future. 

Check if the BMS is connected to the internet. When you find that the BMS is connected to the internet, you should terminate it quickly. There are several direct and indirect threats in that case. 

Check the version of the BMS software and the patch level. This will give you more idea about controlling the facility. 

Final thoughts

In this article, we have talked a lot about building security assessment. This information will help you a lot in getting precise information about the building.

If you find yourself unable to do it on your own, you should go for some expert help on this matter. 

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