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Leading NGOs in the Combat Against Economic Crime and Corruption


Economic crime and corruption have been on the rise in different governments and corporations over the last 30 years. Surprisingly, despite the significant effects of these crimes, most of the criminal activities remain in the dark and are unprosecuted. The perpetrators slip through the net because of a lack of transparency and accountability. Non-Governmental Organizations have a crucial role in fighting financial crime and corruption, from monitoring public services, denouncing bribery, blowing the whistle on corporate corruption, raising awareness and contributing to international and local implementation of anti-corruption instruments.

Whistleblowers are a crucial part of promoting corporate and government accountability by exposing financial crimes, violations of human rights, fraud, corruption, corporate misdoings and other illegal activities that go against the public interest. One of the NGOs’ significant roles in combating crime is encouraging and protecting whistleblowers by providing legal and advocacy expertise as well as a platform to report concerns safely.

We reviewed the most notable NGOs that promote government and corporate accountability by advocating for whistleblowers and foster transparency.

Government Accountability Project (GAP)

GAP is a leading NGO that ensures corporate accountability by defending whistleblowers in corporations, advocating for free speech in the workplace and conveying verified concerns to journalists, advocacy groups and appropriate officials. GAP helps expose crimes and corruption to the public and represents whistleblowers in legal proceedings. GAP also advocates for the right of free speech for whistleblowers and exposes attempts to undermine the protection of their rights.

 Transparency Networks

Transparency Networks works to enable whistleblowers to come forth and call out corporate misconduct, maximizing the potential of people “blowing the whistle” while minimizing the retaliation which whistleblowers often face. Through an investigative approach, Transparency Networks actively seek out private corporations or governmental institutions who have demonstrated questionable financial behaviors, support whistleblowers and advocate for whistleblower protection laws. Transparency Networks use various means in order to substantiate whistleblower claims: investigative journalism, due diligence, integrity investigations and more.

 The National Whistleblower Center (NWC)

The NWC  is a non-profit advocacy organization based in Washington, D.C. The NWC has supported and protected whistleblowers since 1998 with notable success for government and corporate responsibility, atomic security, government contract extortion, and environmental protection. In partnership with, National Whistleblower Legal Defense and Education Fund (NWLDEF), the NWC also provides legal assistance to whistleblowers.

International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ)

ICIJ is a non-profit based in the U.S. with a network of media organizations and reporters dedicated to investigating economic crimes, corruption and human rights violations. The ICIJ encourages whistleblowers and welcomes leaks and tips of stories that are important to the public. ICIJ’s investigative journalism have exposed major stories that would have otherwise remained in the dark, including the Panama Papers and, most recently, the FinCEN files.

Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP)

The OCCPR is a global network of investigative journalists that exposes crime and corruption by publishing whistleblowers’ stories and promoting public accountability. The OCCPR provides whistleblowers, independent journalists, and media centers with a platform for investigative reporting. In partnership with advocacy groups, OCPR provides the public with the information necessary to demand justice and evidence for law enforcement to act.


Features and Operating Processes of Integrated Security Systems

Security systems are an integral part of building security at a large number of venues nowadays and are installed with the idea of making security more manageable and more thorough. A lot of the time the features might seem unnecessary but in the event of large security breaches they could be the difference between catching a perpetrator and letting them get free.

The specific features of integrated security systems depends on the needs of the customer as well as the technology available to the system provider. The most advanced providers who are working with clients with big security requirements such as prisons might provide security systems with the following features:

– Perimeter intruder detection
– CCTV and Digital Video Recording
– Intruder Alarms
– Panic/Affray Alarms
– Video Content Analysis
– Building Management Systems
– Electronic Locking
– Cell Call
– Fire Alarms
– Intercoms
– Public Address System
– Radio Paging
– Staff Safety Systems
– Guard Tour

These features are intended to be present in very high profile buildings and would not be present in the integrated security systems custom made for other buildings. However this gives you some idea as to how advanced security technology is nowadays and exactly how many features the operating system has to integrate in order to achieve results.

The main operating system behind integrated security systems is known as PSIM, or Physical Security Information Management. This is the virtual brain which controls the integrated security systems and which helps human operators to make decisions.

A PSIM platform has six main features which work together to improve the efficiency and standard of a security network:

Firstly, the PSIM platform collects data from all of the individual security features and collates them.

It then analyses the data, events and alarms in order to calculate situation priorities before presenting the information in a simple format for the user to understand and respond to efficiently.

The platform will then provide SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) which are simple instructions based on best practices, and provides tools to resolve the situation.

The PSIM software will track all procedures and provide a report for the operator or system owner to analyse afterwards.

It provides an audit, tracing how the operator has interacted with the system.

Finally it provides information on any manual changes to the security systems and calculates reaction and response times for each event.

The technology behind integrated security systems is very advanced and requires a whole plethora of different processes being run at the same time to decide whether there is a threat present or not. With a bit of luck, technology such as PSIM will only be used in emergencies, leaving the security staff to analyse and evaluate threats for the majority of the time. Features such as cell call and intercoms are simple features which are not necessarily integral to the integrated security features, but are just as important in improve the security of establishments like prisons.

Integrated security systems have gone a long way to improving security in high-profile buildings like prisons and without them, these places would be much more dangerous.


The Advantages and Disadvantages of Hiring Private Security Companies for Businesses

So you have started your very own business and in order to keep it up and running without the fear of security threats, you must hire a protective company. Now the main dilemma when it comes to hiring protective companies is whether to opt for private security companies or whether to build an in house security team. If your business is relatively new and you don’t have enough capital to start your own in house security department for your company, here are some pros and cons of hiring private security companies.

Cost Effectiveness of Hiring Private Security Companies

One of the biggest advantages you can get from hiring a protective company is that you can save a hefty amount of money. You won’t have to place ads in the newspaper for security guards so no advertising fee has to be paid. You won’t have to hire training professionals to train the security guards you hire because they will already have adequate training and special skills taught to them by their agency. Administration costs associated with retaining the protective guards will be zero because that will already be handled by the private security agency.

So basically, you won’t have to worry about administrative costs, hiring and training costs and advertisement costs. You will be amazed by the amount you will have saved in just one year of hiring a private security company rather than building a security team of your own.

Flexibility by Hiring Private Security Officers on Contract Basis

Another golden advantage you get by hiring officers from reputed security agencies is flexibility. You can increase or decrease the number of security officials on duty as you please. You can choose to terminate a security guard without the need of a policy write up or employee union issues. This is another advantage you get when you hire security guards on contractual basis from security agencies. If you don’t like the quality of service being provided to you by the agency, you can simply opt out of the contract without making any additional payments or fines.

Lack of Commitment Can Become an Issue

A major downside to hiring guards is that they lack commitment towards your business. Private security guards hired on contract basis tend to have a carefree attitude towards serving a third party employer. This is because they don’t get to enjoy the same benefits that career employees due which cause a feeling of resentment towards the employer.

High Employee Turnover Rate

Another problem you might face when hiring an agency is the high turnover rate of employees. Most contractual officers leave their jobs to become career employees. This happens due to the low salary packages that are offered to them by security agencies. There are no promotions given so basically, it is a dead end job with little or no improvement.


3 Reasons Why Your Organisation Needs Network Security Like Never Before!

With increasing dependency on technology and its ever evolving nature, network security become important to organisations. There are ample reasons why networks need security today but here are the 3 reasons why I think every network demands security…

Attackers Are Now Interested in Every Possible Network

The belief that we are not Microsoft, Forbes, Reuters or Facebook, that attackers would want to hack us, is a common thing among small businesses. SMEs often feel that their network is hardly of any interest to the hackers. This might be true in terms of data. But there are various other reasons why hackers hack a network, which includes need for computing power, bandwidth and identity. Free resources including identity are never a bad thing for attackers especially when it is for free and if it helps them stay undetected and play safe. Apart from this hackers also attack networks, merely for practice and at times randomly. In both cases you might be just a random guinea pig. Both ways the harm is always and only yours. Data how little or insignificant it might be, is definitely useful for hackers. So it’s high time SMEs and SMBs leave behind the ‘it-will-never-happen-to me’ attitude and get serious about security.

Mobile Malware

Gone are the days when security could be definite and easy. Especially with the growing usage of mobiles, users and devices no more remain within the network perimeters, as both users and devices are now on constant move. Security is all dynamic now. Dynamism is definitely thrilling at times, but uncertainty can be highly dangerous. In addition to this, majority of the mobile devices are still under-protected or unprotected. And it’s obvious that malware developers will focus on this lack of security and awareness to exploit. With limited visibility of URLs on mobiles as compared to PCs, mobile surfing brings new risks and threats in disguise. Mobiles are inevitable for businesses today and so are threats through mobiles, hence being on your guard and having the right security on your side sounds like the right way out.

Advent of Intelligent Attacks

Attacks these days clearly point to the rising sophistication and professionalism among attackers. Security experts predict attacks wherein the attackers will be seen getting more specific, both in terms of their objective and attack strategies. Network threats have become radically diversified with various motives. Money no more remains the only motive. Recent attacks show how attackers are trying to maximize their severity of damage through blended attacks by combining multiple means of entry. Attacks and threats have gone beyond the purview of single-point security solutions that organizations continue to deploy. Security experts agree to the fact that a single weak link in security can compromise an entire security implementation. Therefore, organizations need a unified and future-ready approach that protects their networks and business users from the threat of blended and advanced attacks. So even if you have some security in place; it’s time to revise and ensure that you have the best in place.

Security has always been a must for every business, but now a days it’s the network security that demands attention. As you harvest the immense pool of opportunities internet and various recent technologies like mobile, cloud and virtualization bring in, we recommend you also look at the dark side of the coin. Security should never become the bottle-neck for productivity and growth, but nor should it be the reason for loss. Hence get the right security for your network in place to ensure growth.


Physical Security Information Management Systems And The Interoperability Function

In a world where physical and property safety can hardly be assured at all times, the need to make use of a comprehensive security network has become a necessity. In this regard, one security model that has been gaining prominence are the physical security information management systems (PSIM).

An acronym for Physical Security Information Management, the PSIM has largely been marketed as a next generation security model. This is more or less an accurate description of this particular security software as it has been able to achieve what other systems have yet to accomplish. This has to do with the seamless integration of unconnected security measures and allowing them to work together without encountering any form of difficulty.

Security in the modern-day setting has involved the active participation of information technology. However, this has had issues with a number of applications such that in many instances, the tendency is to limit the use of technology with regard to the involvement of different vendors as well as programmers.

As a result, while various security hardware and software devices have become available in the market, many businesses often take a more cautious approach when it comes to using them for fear that these might cause existing systems to suffer significant damage. When this happens, these businesses will obviously have to deal with the costs of repairing the system or replacing them altogether.

This is one aspect of security that the PSIM concept wants to address. With its high degree of interoperability features, the software will not readily cause existing security systems to malfunction. On the contrary, a more efficient security function can be expected.

More importantly, with this particular software in place, many business owners will become more open to the idea of installing additional security devices on their respective establishments. This has to do with the awareness that instances of security malfunction will cease to happen even as new technologies are eventually introduced.

The introduction of physical security information management systems in the market is also seen as providential given the growing trend towards the use of digital security networks. Of course, security personnel will still be needed to stand guard on the outer perimeters of any given establishment. However, when it comes to providing security in the inner premises, those provided via network connectivity is becoming more preferred.

In this regard, physical security information management systems are clearly the more logical choice even as many are still a bit apprehensive when it comes to using this. Understandably, any new technology carries some form of fear, but this should eventually be set aside once that technology has proven its worth.


Outdoor Security Camera Systems Help Business Owners Secure the Premises

There are several different types of security systems that anyone could be using. There are many that look real, but may not be, but there are also many that are real and will record everything that is being done in the perimeter that it can see. Outdoor security camera systems are going to help keep an eye on the premises of any building when someone is unable to watch it every single minute of the day.

Hiring a security guard to watch over these things is going to be very expensive. While many security systems can be expensive for the initial setup, it is much cheaper to install these than it is to hire a security company to watch this area full time. Some companies will rely on these to record all of the activity when the business is closed and nobody is there.

There are other companies that will hook these up to monitors that are displayed in another area. They may have someone watching them at times that they are having issues. They may also have it recording what is taking place.

Some camera security systems are designed to only keep recordings for a certain amount of time. There are a lot of different choices that everybody is going to have when they are considering all of the possibilities for all of the different cameras that are available. Security is something that is going to be extremely important.

It does not matter if they are protecting the equipment that is there or if they are trying to protect the people that are there. It is very important to make sure that security measures are taken if there is an issue. Sometimes, people do not realize that there is an issue until something is stolen, vandalized or someone is hurt.

Every business is going to take measures to make sure that their assets are protected. Knowing which camera is going to be the best for a company can be difficult to determine though. This is why they will have the security system companies evaluate and tell them what they should have.

They can agree with the company or choose more or less cameras than are suggested though. The opportunities will vary for each type of security system that is used. There are many different mounting options for each one as well.

Outdoor security cameras have to be able to hold up to the different types of weather also. This is something that is going to be very important to consider too. Some customers will prefer to have systems that are hard wired in as well.

Other ones are going to work remotely, using wireless capabilities. There are several different options for everyone that is considering purchasing these. The type that they are purchasing, who is installing them and much more needs to be taken into consideration in the cost as well.

Any company that specializes in security cameras and security systems will have many different options. They will also have a lot of knowledge on what should be used for certain areas. They have the experience with each of the systems that they are selling.

Outdoor security camera systems have a lot of different features for each one. Some people are looking for something that is simple and simply does the job that they need it to. Other people want the latest technology and want to be able to access it remotely and much more. There are many different options that people can consider, but not all of the features are going to be necessary for every system that is used.

Surveillance cameras and security systems are growing in popularity due to the increase of thievery around the world. Finding a surveillance camera or a security system that is reliable is important in many businesses. Spysonic offers many different models of these systems. They have several that are going to record as well as many that are strictly for monitoring certain areas.


5 Things to Keep in Mind Before Opting for Security Agencies for Your Retail Store

The changing trends in the society like inflation, unemployment, recession, etc. have led people to take up alternative solutions to stealing and causing notorious crimes. With such activities on the prowl, there is an added requirement for manned and automatic security services that can help one to stay away from such issues. One of the areas that often require security services is the retail stores that have the customers helping themselves to purchase all that they need. While in a retail store, you would often find two types of people that are the buyers with buying intentions and the thieves who simply comes over to waste time and look for chances to nab products without anyone noticing them. Several agencies have people who are professionally trained to provide security to such large-scale retail stores. Before making a choice on such services, you need to keep certain points in mind.

• Being trustworthy – A security agency has security personnel working for them. While deploying these personnel to their designated places, the organizations should make sure that they are trustworthy. As they are responsible for the safekeeping of the products at the store, they should be loyal from all aspects by providing security to the employees as well..

• Being officially accredited – All agencies providing professional security services should be officially accredited by the security industry authority. The accreditation allows the companies to hire genuine and trustworthy security forces to ensure the security to their customers. The personnel should be trained to handle problems in a retail store and find out solutions to problems that may arise.

• Looking out for the best agency – You would find umpteen numbers of security agencies around you that are always ready to extend their hands for help. Asking friends and acquaintances for references can be of great help as they may have hands-on experience with such services. Taking up quotes from each one of the agencies can help you compare the facilities that they provide and the reputation of each.

• Services that they provide – A security company in general provides personnel that can take care of the safety of the retail store. Taking care of theft, miscreants, security issues with customers, etc. makes to their priority list. There are a few agencies that not only take care of such issues but also provide you with digital security solutions like video cameras, electronic scanners, etc. These external devices add up to the security solutions keeping your premises protected round-the-clock.

• Allowing you to keep your budget nominal – While you hire a security agency to take care of your store, you should make sure that they do not end up charging you more than your profits. Though they are efficient in providing you with the best security options, they shouldn’t be charging more than they should.