Contemporary Enterprise Security

A collaborative approach between security and surveillance at casinos

Throughout my career in the gaming industry, I’ve had the privilege of serving in various roles. I started in the slot department, transitioned to the surveillance department, and spent time in security. Much of my career has been dedicated to protecting gaming properties. Over the years, I’ve witnessed the convergence of surveillance and security roles, a development I believe is beneficial.

Traditionally, these two departments had distinct roles: security managed physical safety, while surveillance monitored gaming activities. This model was effective for decades and largely remains so. However, the landscape of our responsibilities is shifting.

The evolution of security and surveillance is driven by the changing nature of the threats we face. Security personnel handle intoxicated individuals, assist guests, look out for slot ticket thieves, and wake sleepers. Surveillance teams monitor for card counters, cheats, regulatory violations, and policy breaches. While these tasks remain important, they are no longer sufficient.

To protect our properties effectively, we must consider the enterprise as a whole and its comprehensive risk profile. This necessitates a collaborative approach between security and surveillance.

Today’s gaming properties face a myriad of new challenges, including but not limited to:

  • Cybersecurity and Cybercrime
  • Active Shooter Incidents
  • Workplace Violence
  • Title 31 Compliance
  • Civil Liability
  • Cage Robberies
  • Follow-Home Robberies
  • Civil Disorder
  • Artificial Intelligence Threats
  • Sex Trafficking
  • Drug Trafficking
  • Nightclub and Day Club Operations
  • Gang Activity
  • Emergency Preparedness

These are just some of the contemporary risks and threats. We continue to perform our traditional duties but with an expanded scope of responsibilities.

Addressing these modern challenges requires security and surveillance to work together in assessing, identifying, and responding to risks and threats. We can effectively mitigate these concerns through cooperation, shared responsibilities, and joint action.

Take, for instance, the issue of sex trafficking – a global problem that also affects our industry. Reports indicate incidents of sex trafficking in hotels and casinos nationwide. Such activities can lead to severe consequences, including serious injury or death, exploitation of minors, and other criminal activities. These incidents have significant repercussions for any enterprise and must be prevented.

Traditionally, we might train security officers to recognize signs of sex trafficking, relying on them to report any suspicious activity. However, a more effective approach involves collaborating with surveillance teams to identify red flags and take appropriate action proactively. This joint effort better protects the property, guests, and team members.

Moving forward, it is crucial to adopt an enterprise-wide security perspective. Security and surveillance and key stakeholders must collaborate to assess risks, identify threats and vulnerabilities, and develop a comprehensive security plan. This plan should outline how the two departments work together to deter, detect, and manage today’s risks and challenges.

Recommended Key Action Points

  1. Conduct or hire an outside consultant to perform a risk assessment of the enterprise to identify existing and potential risks, threats, and vulnerabilities.
  2. Develop a joint enterprise security plan with input from security, surveillance, and key stakeholders. This plan should address identified risks, vulnerabilities, and threats, including operational protocols, responses, and countermeasures.
  3. Annually reassess your risk profile and security plan.

The risks and emerging threats to the gaming industry are numerous and constantly evolving (download the annual national surveillance report). To effectively counter these threats and protect our properties, we must treat them as a unified enterprise, leveraging the combined strengths of security and surveillance.

Does your operation need a security and surveillance audit or custom on-site training? Contact Raving today