Chair: Martin Gill

Panellists:
Danny Chan – Senior Regional Vice President at ASIS Region 13
Dino Hindarto – Managing Director Nawakara Group (Indonesia)
Dr. Jeyong Jung – Assistant Professor at University of Ulsan (South Korea)
Sheila Ponnosamy – Director of Operations at Mainguard International (S) Pte Ltd (Singapore)

Key points

Sheila Ponnosamy starts by highlighting the quite dramatic impact Covid-19 has had on the world generally and security sector specifically. She notes the adverse economic climate which will have an ongoing impact. Security people were caught off guard by the virus, and this has led to changes as the security sector caught up and then adapted. She calls for a job redesign for security officers; they have become service personnel (e.g. monitoring diseases) rather than just the protection of assets. Risk management now includes pandemic management. There is an interesting discussion on some of the tasks that have had to be adapted and how on the job training has been adopted because of the need to respond speedily. Technology is adapting too; there is a move towards more advanced technologies and this has required more skills set development.

Dr. Jeyong Jung argues that South Korea managed the first wave well but suffered on the second wave which emerged quickly, and business models have adapted to meet the changing requirements as humans have been replaced by technology and aided by the availability of data. As such quality of work is becoming important. He calls for the security sector to redefine its requirements (and the skillsets to meet them) and this includes Chief Security Officers; not just their own role but also in supporting the frontline. In terms of changes he notes that interaction has gone up from off line to on line and automations and digitalisation are speeding up. In South Korea they are adapting well.

Dino Hindarto notes that in Indonesia organisations were not ready for the virus, and the country is suffering, both unemployment and crime are high. They understood how to respond to the virus, they were accustomed to using masks for example, and they had installed some procedures following the Jakarta bomb blast (body searching), and that laid the foundation for a better Covid-19 response. That said, instilling the requirement to follow Government protocols on personal protection (such as regular hand washing) has been a challenge.  He notes that Indonesia is a big country and in some areas the transition to technology is slow and in many cases there has been a clear need to revisit business continuity/emergency management procedures.

Danny Chan points to the warning of many experts, that the next pandemic is just around the corner (and in Hong Kong the third wave of the current one). It has changed the security landscape; old security plans have to be replaced with new ones to take account of what is now known. The lack of people at workplaces, the new working from home landscape invites us to think differently and you will hear him ask how ready is the security world for the changing security needs? He warns that relying on vaccines is unwise, they take ages to develop, they then need to be effectively deployed, they have to work in the longer term; these are very real challenges. Covid-19 has been a catalyst for technology change but people are still learning how to properly integrate technologies. He argues security now is a different job, technology is an enhancement but humans have become more important as they are more skilled; security personnel have been elevated up the value chain. As you will hear him emphasise, Covid-19 is not the only danger about; we must not take our eye off the ball that is looking for others.

In these global webinars we have reviewed security from many different angles and many different domains, and in this webinar we find that while in some respects some parts of Asia were better prepared (having previously dealt with health threats), in many other ways they are facing similar problems. The opportunity to learn about security by understanding experiences in different parts of the world then is a very real one.

Martin Gill
1 September 2020