THE MAGAZINE

Proactive Security Administration

By Jim Ellis, CPP, PSP, CSSM

*****Proactive Security Administration. George E. Curtis and R. Bruce McBride; published by Pearson Prentice-Hall, www.prenhall.com (Web); 256 pages; $34.

Ever heard of CPED? You probably think the “T” is missing from CPTED—crime prevention through environmental design—and you’d be right. But the authors of Proactive Security Administration inexplicably eschew the well-known “CPTED” acronym, using in its place “CPED,” standing for “crime prevention planning by environmental design,” which really should be CPPED in any case.

It soon becomes clear enough that CPED is CPTED, but the deviation from accepted style is troubling, especially since the book is designed for students, who are laying down their foundation of security knowledge.

In addition, there are some obvious typos, such as OSHA being referred to as the Occupational Health and Safety (instead of Safety and Health) Act. The Twin Towers are called “the World Trace Center,” and the New York Electronic Crime Task Force is abbreviated as NYETCF, transposing the T and C.

References to data and photographs that are not actually there also confound the reader. Moreover, out-of-date facts will mislead beginning students. For example, the authors refer to Burns and Pinkertons as leading contract security and investigative companies. While these excellent companies have longstanding, distinguished histories, they have ceased to exist as standalone companies and are now operating under the aegis of a single firm: Securitas.

In addition, information is sometimes presented out of order. Also, ASIS’s Professional Certified Investigator (PCI) and Physical Security Professional (PSP) programs are alluded to as certificate training programs only, which diminishes the value these programs provide and deprives them of their rightful place alongside the CPP designation (which, incidentally, is misidentified in the previous paragraph in the book).

The errors are unfortunate, because the authors have some good information to share. Their discussion of psychological counseling as a part of recovery efforts is timely and useful. They also rightly point out the need for finance administration in business continuity planning to determine, on the scene, the costs incurred in rescuing people so that a proper accounting can be generated for government-assistance purposes.

In both the security industry and the book-editing process, the pace is fast. In both cases, faster than the authors could deal with, apparently. Perhaps the authors will do better in a second edition of this book. If they pay more careful attention to detail, it could be an excellent introductory text for college students.


Reviewer:Jim Ellis, CPP, PSP, CSSM (Certified in Security Supervision and Management), is the physical security planner for the Principal Financial Group in Des Moines, Iowa. He holds a B.A. in justice studies from Rhode Island College and is currently enrolled in the master’s program in business and organizational security management at Webster University. He is an assistant regional vice president for Region VIII of ASIS International, and serves as Web site manager for the Central Iowa Chapter.


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