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Maximizing security with quality assurance programs.

SINCE THE ATTACK ON THE US diplomatic mission in Kuwait in 1983, 400 similar attacks have been mounted abroad against US personnel and property. In 1988, for example, 44 assaults took place.(1) Are diplomatic missions properly protected against such assaults?

Many of these assaults can be categorized as forced entry or ballistic attacks. Forced entry attacks typically involve an agitated and unorganized yet motivated group of individuals who attempt to breach a diplomatic mission's defenses. They typically use hand-held tools, such as hammers, rams, and steel pipes. They also may set fires by using Molotov cocktails or other methods.

An example of a forced entry attack was the assault on the US mission in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, in 1988. A mob attempted to penetrate the mission's defenses using battering rams and fires. Interior penetration of the US mission was not successful.

Ballistic attacks usually involve indiscriminate firing small arms, such as high-powered rifles or automatic weapons like the AK-47 or the Uzi. This type of attack was conducted against the US mission in San Salvador, El Salvador, in 1987. Other forms of attack encountered include blast, rocket-propelled grenade, and electronic and human espionage. This article addresses forced entry and ballistic attacks and a systems-engineered quality assurance program (QAP) to improve the performance of the equipment designed to counter these violent acts. IN 1987, THE US DEPARTMENT OF STATE'S Physical Security Programs section (DS-PSP), part of the Bureau of Diplomatic Security, conceptualized an (1) Testimony of Sheldon Krys, Assistant Secretary for Diplomatic Security, before the Subcommittee on International Operations, October 24, 1989. important program. Its goal was to improve the performance of forced entry and ballistic resistant (FE-BR) doors, windows, and louvers used in the State Department's defense system. The most cost-effective way to improve these FE-BR systems was to build a three-pronged systematic QAP.

The program was based on the premise that quality assurance principles and practices would lead to an improvement in FE-BR system effectiveness. This would, in turn, enhance the security of the defense system. This premise has proven valid due to cooperation between the State Department and various manufacturers and suppliers.

The first element of the QAP is the FE-BR system test program. This consists of destructive testing of equipment that has previously met State Department test standards. It also includes enhancing those test standards to reflect a systems engineering approach to threats.

The second element is the application of quality assurance principles and practices to manufacturers' and suppliers' production processes. Having each of the manufacturers adopt a uniform quality control system was essential. Additional efforts included analyzing window production techniques and developing a nondestructive test method for windows.

The third element is the Macintosh-based inventory and tracking data base for FE-BR systems and components. Known as the physical security equipment inventory management system (PSEIMS), this data base is the centralizing point for the QAP. It tracks 10,000 FE-BR systems worldwide.

This computerized system is a formatted relational data base that uses Hypercard and Fourth Dimension software. A mouse is used with a graphic interface. Among the redeeming qualities of the system are its user-friendly nature and interapplication capabilities. A novice can operate the system with as little as four hours' training.

The data base contains test data, production and shipping information through a bar code system, FE-BR system cost, and grounds and floor plans. PSEIMS provides security assessment, facility management, and property resource management capabilities for DS-PSP personnel by post, region, or worldwide groupings. DS-PSP INITIALLY CONTEMPLATED COMputer simulation of forced entry and ballistic attack scenarios. However, even the American. Society for Testing and Materials decided against computer simulation of forced entry testing. And unfortunately, one element that a computer can not measure accurately is human ingenuity.

Ballistic attacks can be simulated, but forced-entry attacks raise a problem. Myriad intangible factors enter the forced-entry attack scenario, making computer simulations unworkable.

Given the limitations of computer simulation, DS-PSP developed a two-part test program: a measured upgrade of test standards used since 1982 and a destructive test program for FE-BR systems that had previously met the 1982 test standards.

The FE-BR systems were tested against the 1982 standards until they were adequately revised. Eleven items were tested against the 1982 standards, 22 against the enhanced 1989 standards.

The test revealed high failure rates for FE-BR systems that had initially met the 1982 requirements. Despite some design improvements in 1988 and 1989, FE-BR systems showed a 55 percent failure rate. This was disturbing news since a number of the items that failed testing are currently installed in State Department missions.

The 1982 test standards were not based on a systems engineering approach to testing. Until 1987, FE-BR systems were viewed as monolithic entities with no quarter given to the subsystems within each piece of equipment. For instance, if one side of an FE-BR system was tested, then the entire system was considered tested. Moreover, the test standard requirement was binary-a system either passed or failed.

Tests to failure were not performed, and performance data on FE-BR systems was not regularly compiled and analyzed. Perhaps of greater significance was an enforcement issue: Once an item met the requirements, it was forever certified, despite any design modifications. The 1989 standards do not share these deficiencies. FE-BE SYSTEMS DISCUSSED HERE ARE doors and windows. FE-BR doors are manufactured in several configurations: a single or double opaque door with security hardware, a single door with a window, and a single door with a window containing a deal tray with a voice transmission device. FE-BR window configurations differ as well: those with a window and those with a window and a deal tray.

Arguably, the most complex FE-BR system is the door or window containing a number of subsystems. For example, the FE-BR single door with a window contains three distinct subsystems that must be considered during testing and threat analysis.

The first is the window or transparency. This is a uniquely manufactured glass and polycarbonate composite designed to be aesthetically acceptable while providing maximum protection. The second is the security hardware. This hardware consists of hardened locking devices. The third subsystem is the anchoring and frame system.

The 1989 test standards account for the importance of both the overall system and its subsystems. Moreover, they contain a test-to-failure phase that allows DS-PSP personnel to gauge the performance of FE-BR security systems beyond the pass point.

The test program has provided critical information on the performance of equipment against varying threats. Test program data has been entered into PSEIMS for use in facilities management and security assessment. And in conjunction with worldwide field data on FE-BR systems, test program data has been used to target critical points in the manufacture, transport, and installation of the systems. A MAJOR OBSTACLE IN DEVELOPING THE QAP for the State Department was the absence of a uniform quality assurance management system. Each manufacturer of FE-BR systems had its own unique system based on the best commercial practices.

However, the State Department recognized in 1987 that a uniform system was a necessary for a consistent compliance inspection program and standard data reporting. A straightforward quality control system based on Federal Standard 368A was adopted. This system is currently being implemented by the manufacturers.

Before a comprehensive QAP was developed, worldwide field reports on FE-BR systems, test program results, and in-plant inspections identified critical areas for improvement. Beyond system design weaknesses and anchoring system deficiencies observed during testing, data analysis showed that the major problem area-in terms of security, cost, and aesthetics-had been with glass-clad polycarbonate transparencies employed in FE-BR systems.

Since the State Department demands that no spalling occur on the protected side, the window must undergo a precise production process. This process must be accurate or crazings, clouding, delaminations, and other degradations will occur.

Extensive research was undertaken to discover whether the window production process was responsible for the large number of problems the State Department had experienced. A number of areas were examined including window installation into the frame system, aging, overseas packing and shipping methods, storage, inspection reports (both by the manufacturer and on acceptance), and maintenance of the FEBR system once installed.

A detailed report showed that deficiencies existed in the window production process.(2) This report was based on the input of suppliers, manufacturers, and field personnel and supported by an analysis of production methods.

Indeed, the processing and application of urethanes and polyvinyl buteral between the layers of glass and polycarbonate, the layup methods, and the heat and time factors in the autoclave were shown to have diverged from recommendations. Without quality assurance and control theories, this discovery would not have been possible.

In conjunction with the test program, an inexpensive nondestructive test method was developed to determine a transparency's tendency to delaminate or degrade once installed in the frame system. Using polarized light, the test yields stress readings of the birefringence exhibited by the transparency. Numerical readings beyond a designated level would alert the manufacturer and DS-PSP that latent defects in the transparency are likely. Front-end corrective action could then be taken.(3) Readings for every glazing could be stored in PSEIMS and correlated to (2) Bob Marshall and Earl Weir, Glass Clad Polycarbonate Laminate Crazing/Delaminations and Autoclave Conditions Report, unpublished report by Entek Inc. to US State Department, March 15, 1989. (3) Earl Weir, Protorype Polarization Box to Examine Polycarbonate Laminate for Stress and Optical Defects, unpublished report by Entek Inc. to US State Department, August 9, 1989. each particular FE-BR system installed at diplomatic missions worldwide. THE PHYSICAL SECURITY EQUIPMENT INventory management system is the centerpiece of the QAP. All significant test and quality assurance data, as well as relevant worldwide field reporting information, is integrated into the data base.

FE-BR system and subsystem baseline information was obtained from a thorough review of manufacturer and State Department records for 1982 through 1988. Ten thousand systems, with components, are currently being inventoried and tracked.

In 1989, a worldwide bar code system was implemented. Manufacturers place a unique bar code label on each piece of equipment produced for the State Department. The manufacturer then forwards the bar code information, and DS-PSP loads it into the system.

PSEIMS allows interactive management of facilities and property using grounds and floor plans scanned into the data base. The user merely clicks on the designated graphic points for FE-BR systems on a post floor and a list appears on the computer screen. The list includes system and subsystem configuration, life cycle data, costs, shipping, storage and test data, and environmental information.

Of particular interest is the system's security assessment capabilities. The test program's results provide a clear but bleak picture of the performance characteristics of many of the FE-BR systems at diplomatic missions worldwide. The results show a high percentage of inadequate security equipment.

Recall that PSEIMS allows FE-BR system identification by specific groupings. Specious equipment installed at various diplomatic missions in high-, medium-, and low-threat areas can easily be identified and targeted for replacement or modification. Time-to-failure test data has also been incorporated into PSEIMS. This is critical information DS-PSP in a crisis.

The QAP is a cost-effective program to improve security equipment effectiveness using a static systems-engineering process infused with quality assurance principles and practices. This mix of methodologies has yielded a total systems approach to testing, the development of a means to correct the window problems observed, and informed facilities management and security assessment through PSEIMS. More importantly, the QAP has contributed, albeit in a small way, to the ultimate objective of any State Department security program: the protection of American personnel and property. Jeff Stanton was the program manager for DS-PSP's quality assurance program. He is Currently program rector with the Tuckerman Group in Arlington, VA.
COPYRIGHT 1991 American Society for Industrial Security
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Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Special Issue
Author:fStanton, Jeff
Publication:Security Management
Date:Nov 1, 1991
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