"No Cost" and "Low Cost" measures for the security of your IT hardware

The content of this blog post is based on invaluable input from many respected and knowledgeable sources within the security industry, as well as discussions with and direct feedback received from a broad customer base. As well as more than a decade of trading as a specialist security supplier mainly in the education sector.


Security is an area of major concern to almost every type of organisation, especially in public sector organisations like education and healthcare environments.

A best value solution does not necessarily mean the cheapest (or most expensive) solution, the fastest implementation, or the latest gizmo.

Theft alone is estimated to cost UK businesses over £1 Billion per year and realistically no company or organisation can consider themselves immune. Theft from the public sector is not included in these figures. Once attacked you are faced with a greater than 70% chance of a repeat theft attack within a few weeks.

Any form of obstacle, which can delay or frighten a thief into irrational action, is welcome.

No and Low Cost Measures

Some security measures can be implemented for free or at least without external investment. For example, simple documented security policies (backed up with staff training and education) can provide a valuable contribution to the security of any organisation.

Simple measures include :-

* Always challenge strangers on site to find out why they are there and on whose authority.

* Do not pass out information such as how many PCs there are on site to unknown callers.

* Packaging from a new delivery left in a skip outside of the premises can alert thieves to the fact that new equipment has been delivered!

* Do not leave mobile equipment lying around unattended or visible when recharging.

* Many PC thefts are to order. Do not advertise to people outside of the organisation that there are assets to steal. Intelligence on the type and location of equipment is what a thief gathers.

* Keep keys on a key rack in an innocuous locked cabinet that gives no indication of its content. If this is one of a series of cabinets all the better. (i.e. hide your tree in a forest).

* Prevent access to windows and roofs by trimming trees, relocating objects near the building that can be used as climbing devices, and ensuring that down spouts, covered walkway supports, light posts, and other building or site features are not scalable.

* Trim shrubbery and trees and relocate other obstacles such as refuse containers to eliminate hiding places and provide clear lines of sight throughout your grounds.

* Consider an all-lights-off policy for the site when it is not being used. This policy is based on the assumption that intruders’ lights give them away.