Security 4.0

The Road to the Future

In 2012, the manufacturing industry first heard the term “Industry 4.0.” It was the harbinger of a change also known as the “4th industrial revolution”.  In the smart factories of the modern age, processes are increasingly automated, systems and facilities analyze themselves, and connected AI monitoring programs communicate with each other and their human co-workers.  This enables faster, smoother processing that frees the human participants for tasks that require a human touch. Audi, the auto manufacturer, is making its production fit for the future with a smart factory driven by connected systems and big data. Humans and robots work together to build cars in a modular environment, leveraging several high tech features such as virtual reality.


The security industry is on a similar evolutionary path - let’s call it Security 4.0.  But the security industry  is not as far along as the manufacturing world. While the most efficiently run security programs in the world today deploy connected systems and processes communicating autonomously and providing relevant data to the security professionals tasked with protecting personnel and property from harm, many security programs are still highly manual and almost entirely human-based. They do not take advantage of the benefits of efficiency that automation, artificial intelligence, analytics, and machine learning can bring to augment the human capacity to monitor and react more quickly, more intelligently, and with more preparation to security incidents as they happen.


As with any revolution, the modern industrial revolution has not been without its issues and problems along its 200 year journey, but the benefits have been substantial. As we evolve to Security 4.0 we must have an understanding that the path will be long and will require careful planning. As an industry, security must be mindful of taking an untried path, to avoid opening up security risks as we make the transition. If done correctly, our transition will bring similar benefits in efficiency, effectiveness, and overall empowerment for the human side of the human-technology team.  We can see the embodiment of the journey on the horizon as the “Connected Security Program,” but there are roadblocks along the way.  


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