How An Operations System With CMMS Can Improve Site Security.
You know the saying “better safe than sorry?” That phrase is especially applicable to the security of your facility. But who has budget for designated security guards, a camera system, an alarm system, advanced locks and alerts when a breach occurs? Not many people, unfortunately.
Luckily, you don’t need to shell out money for all those things. A CMMS/EAM/FM software platform might be the all-in-one solution that can manage your assets and enforce security protocols. Here are some ways that CMMS can make your facility more secure:
by: Bergen Adair
- Site Security
The first step to maintaining a secure facility is keeping unauthorized personnel off the premises. Some CMMS solutions offer advanced facility monitoring features that alert you when windows are open, lights are on, or other predefined triggers are set off.
- User Authentication
No less important than the physical safety of your site is the security of who has access to it. All CMMS solutions require usernames and passwords in order to log into the interface. This prevents disgruntled ex-employees, mischievous teens or vandals from accessing your software and wreaking havoc inside the system. CMMS solutions also come with session timeouts that trigger an automatic logout after a set amount of time has passed. This prevents employees from accidentally leaving an open portal into the system.
- Role-Based Access
CMMS keeps the system safe from internal tampering as well. By restricting certain actions (work order completion, adjusting timeclocks, editing asset profiles, etc.) to admin-only, you protect your internal system from accidental or intentional manipulation.
- Data Security
You probably transmit a lot of data back and forth through your CMMS solution, especially if it is web-based. Keeping this potentially sensitive data safe from hacking is as vital as protecting the physical equipment that generated it. If you utilize cloud-based CMMS, your vendor (in this case, FacilityONE) is responsible for providing security — and since they shoulder this burden for many paying clients, they should invest in robust data security measures. It’s always good to double check what security precautions the vendor takes when purchasing software, as this should be a dealbreaker. For those using on-premise CMMS software, the onus of security falls to you. But never fear! Most CMMS companies offer easy integration with third party solutions like endpoint security that will do the heavy lifting for you.
- Data Recovery
So CMMS protects from cyber attacks, but what about disasters? Similar to data security, data recovery is the responsibility of the vendor for cloud-based CMMS solutions and with you for on-premise solutions. Ask prospective CMMS or endpoint vendors what their data recovery plans look like, whether they come at an additional cost, and what their track record is for recovering data lost in previous situations. Do they wait until after the problem to alert clients? Or do they have account managers like FacilityONE who work closely with you to plan an individual recovery plan, regardless of whether the solution is on-premise or cloud based? In the modern era of technology most will have at least some kind of data recovery plan, but it’s always important to check and establish the reliability of the solution before purchasing it.
- Site Safety
This may not be the first thing that comes to mind when considering “security,” but ensuring a safe facility protects you in a number of ways. First of all, it protects you financially — unsafe conditions cause asset breakdowns, worker injuries, high employee turnover and potential lawsuits. It also protects you legally by covering you if an employee does injure themselves on the job. CMMS promotes jobsite safety by recording asset maintenance and breakdowns, so you always know when a piece of equipment was last maintained. The BI features like those offered by FacilityONE’s integration with Tableau generate reports on metrics like mean-time-between-failure, helping you accurately predict when an asset is no longer safe to use and will imminently fail.
- CMMS and the IoT
The most advanced way CMMS keeps your facility secure is by integrating with the Internet of Things. The IoT is what we call the interconnected network of internet-enabled devices like smart cameras, mobile phones, sensors, etc. The more IoT-enabled devices you have on your site, the more access you have to it even when you aren’t there. IoT sensors can alert you in real-time of a perimeter breach, and IoT cameras can send footage directly to your smartphone. While not every facility needs (or can afford) this kind of intense security, it is becoming more and more accessible as the IoT becomes more prevalent in various industries.
How do you keep your site safe with CMMS? Let us know in the comments!