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Introduction to Security.

Today's security professionals are learning to find more comprehensive solutions to business losses. Security-related needs will receive the attention they deserve only if security managers understand business management priorities and frame recommendations in business terms with measurable bottom-line results.

Introduction to Security and Loss Control is an introductory textbook that suggests replacing security's traditional crime orientation with a multiloss orientation. In a collection of basic reference writings, Bottom and Kostanoski discuss security-related risks and professions and loss control needs. Two significant recommendations for change include merging security and safety management and replacing preventive efforts with controls.

Overviews provide good road maps of each chapter's content. However, many of the review questions at the end of each chapter cover information that does not support meaningful review or testing, such as CPP certification requirements, definitions of single- and double-action handguns, and the anti-slip coefficient.

Consistent with the mechanical approach to review questions, topics vacillate between foundational and specific subject matter, making developing lesson plans that build on previous instruction difficult. For example, Bottom and Kostanoski go from a discussion on loss-related risks and careers to one on safety topics.

After again discussing the loss control profession, they move on to surveys, resources, and technology. They then jump back and forth between legal issues, computer security, and terrorism and finally examine the perspectives of business management.

Early in the book, we are promised a how-to guide for loss control that does not materialize. However, the authors do a good job of identifying loss control demands through their WAECUP model-waste, accident, error, crime, and unethical/unprofessional practice. An in-depth how-to manual addressing the WAECUP elements could be a useful management tool.

Some of the surprises facing security professionals are explained, including management's varied feelings about loss control and private security's lingering image problems. Since many of these barriers stem from misinformation and outdated perceptions, the authors urge loss control professionals to gain greater acceptance through effectively measuring losses and responding to management needs.

After warning the reader that security professionals with backgrounds limited to law enforcement tend to overemphasize crime threats, the authors unfortunately revert to the assertion that "one of the most serious issues facing corporate America is theft." This underlying philosophy is evident throughout the text, with assets often narrowly defined as physical assets. Similarly, extensive discussions on technology are limited to physical security and fire protection. The final chapter contains 17 case studies, all related to criminal assault.

Several portions of Introduction to Security and Loss Control contain current theory and philosophy, with the WAECUP model addressing appropriate risk categories. Unfortunately, the material is too disjointed for effective instructional use, and the book contains too little specific direction for use as a reference tool. I do not recommend purchasing Introduction to Security and Loss Control.
COPYRIGHT 1991 American Society for Industrial Security
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Author:McPheters, Wally
Publication:Security Management
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Feb 1, 1991
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