In Site Security Planning and Design Criteria, security expert witness Randall Atlas Ph.D., AIA. and Anthony DiGreggario of Atlas Safety & Security Design, Inc. write on the assessment process.
Achieving the correct level of protection against site-based threats may be very expensive and is highly dependent on the nature of the protected assets and the threat against which they require protection. Determining what is required is a matter of managing the perceived risks. If the designer is to assist in providing protection in the design of the site, an assessment of the security requirements must be accomplished preferably before the design begins, but certainly no later than the beginning of the architectural programming phase. This assessment is the responsibility of the owner;
however, it is incumbent on the designer to assure that the nature of the security requirements is determined before the design begins. Failing to obtain a definitive answer will certainly result in design changes, delays, and cost increases to the owner and the architect if the owner “discovers” their security needs later in the design process.
The site assessment will answer the following four questions:
What are the assets (persons, places, information, property) that require security protection?
What are the criminal or other threats ( street crime, workplace violence,
terrorism, sabotage) against which the assets must be protected?
What are the ruinerabilities of the assets to the threats (for example, if workplace violence is a threat, can uncontrolled persons enter private workspace unchallenged)?
What are the countermeasures (for example, does the design channel visitors through controlled site access portals) required to mitigate the threat?