Every company has a vested interest in the property it owns, and security measures are implemented to ensure the protection of physical items, company-owned ideas and the network its computers use to function. In addition to protecting property, the term “security” has an additional meaning in a corporate context. A corporation’s securities play a role in the financial investment world and, as the name indicates, are used to protect investors.
At the most basic level, companies need to protect the physical property they own. Different industries require different security measures to achieve this objective. Companies that manufacture food or drug products have tighter security in regard to allowing employees and visitors into restricted areas than a retail outlet, for example. Retail stores have their own issues in regard to security: Loss prevention is an important detail for this particular industry; security personnel need to focus on it.
The ideas employees develop for their employers are considered intellectual property, and organizations typically own the rights to this form of property. Corporate security is concerned with making sure that an organization’s ideas are not stolen and taken to a competitor. One way to proactively prevent intellectual property theft is to restrict access to computer files on the company’s internal network. Not all employees need access to all files, and documents containing valuable information should be protected.
With the accessibility of information contained on computers connected within a company network, network security is an emerging concern for corporations. Corporations need to not only secure the information from external threats, but they also need to defend against any form of viral attack. Whereas a company’s security department is most likely to be concerned with physical damage, this kind of security is handled by an information technology department. Measures to protect a company’s network include: limiting employee Internet access, scanning email for viruses and establishing a limited intranet that's not connected externally.
The term “security” has additional meaning in the corporate world beyond the areas previously examined. As defined by The Free Dictionary, securities are “documents that merely represent an interest or a right in something else” and include such items as stocks, bonds and investment contracts. These documents offer security for consumers and corporations by protecting their investments. Securities are regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, but also fall under the regulation of individual states. Companies that intend on offering securities need to register with the federal agency to conduct transactions.