Interoperability Anticipated

When the ASIS International 58th Annual Seminar and Exhibits (ASIS 2012) opens in Philadelphia on Sept. 10, more than 20,000 security professionals from more than 90 countries around the globe will converge at the Pennsylvania Convention Center to learn what’s changed, what works and what’s coming next in the industry. There’s no doubt that, for many, integration of traditional and logical security and the challenges associated with the interoperability of security systems will be top of mind.

“Our members are experiencing an increasing rate of assimilation of a variety of technologies into their functions along with the continuing emphasis on cyber security,” said ASIS Chairman Raymond T. O’Hara. “Our goal is to help them to become better equipped to succeed in the future.”

(ISC)2, the administrators of the CISSP, will once again colocate its Security Congress with the ASIS Annual Seminar and Exhibits. The tradeshow draws information security thought leaders and luminaries for discussions on a wide range of information security issues. General education sessions, networking events and the exhibit floor are open to registered attendees for either event.

“The current threat landscape demands the collaboration of professional support organizations like ASIS and (ISC)2,” said Hord Tipton, executive director of (ISC)2. “Cyber criminals don’t recognize the divisions between various areas of security when they attack. It is essential that we acknowledge that these lines are blurred and provide professionals with access to bleeding-edge knowledge in order to protect our customers and ourselves. It is our goal through Congress to arm attendees at all levels with the tools they need across a breadth of security disciplines.”

One of the most popular sessions at the seminar each year is “What’s New on the Floor?” Security industry veterans Ronald Lander and Howard Belfor will lead this informative session, scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 11.

“There will be a greater emphasis on product interoperability in addition to the introduction of a larger number of mobile applications aimed at remote management, field data collection and forensics,” Belfor said. “Some of the most significant advances since last year will be in the area of data analysis—whether metadata or analytics associated with captured video or other security-related monitoring.”

Over the course of four days, ASIS 2012 attendees will have the opportunity to select from more than 200 educational sessions across 22 tracks. Sessions, developed and delivered by security management practitioners and subject matter experts, will cover a full range of timely security topics and critical issues, as well as core security management best practices and strategies.

“The ASIS Seminar and Exhibits is more relevant than ever this year,” said Matthew Kushner, president of CNL Software, Americas. “In recent years, there has been a great deal of focus on integration, and it is now accepted that intelligent security integration is one of the few methods of enhancing security without increasing security budgets.

“Today, there are two key restrictions to completely integrated solutions: firstly, technical restrictions, which we are addressing with our PSIM platform, and secondly, the need for education, which ASIS addresses through its educational programming. ASIS is doing an outstanding job educating the industry on the benefits of an integrated approach to security management,” Kushner said.

In addition to the expanded programming for information security professionals, ASIS will present an educational track for security systems integrators. The track is endorsed by PSA Security Network, the world’s largest electronic security cooperative representing security system integrators. A number of sector-specific sessions will be presented—each one providing unique insights from security end users into the security requirements and demands within a vertical industry sector.

“Systems integrators need to keep pace with the challenges and demands faced by practitioners,” said Bill Bozeman, president and CEO of PSA Security. “These special education sessions provide a unique opportunity to open a dialogue between the customer and the service providers that is absolutely invaluable.”

Attendees may prepare for professional certification in the days preceding the seminar in Philadelphia. ASIS certification reviews will be offered Sept. 7-8 for the Certified Protection Professional (CPP), Professional Certified Investigator (PCI) and Physical Security Professional (PSP) examinations. On Sept. 8-9, a series of (ISC)2 credential clinics are scheduled (CISSP®, CSSLP, CAP and SSCP), as well as an official twoday review seminar for both CSSLP and CISSP.

American astrophysicist Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson will address attendees at the closing luncheon. Mohammad ElBaradei, former director general of the Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), will deliver a keynote speech Sept. 11 at 8 a.m., and former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates will keynote Sept. 12 at 8 a.m.

“The impact of Dr. ElBaradei’s work to strengthen the nonproliferation regime is far reaching. His advocacy of nuclear disarmament and his dedication to the peaceful use of nuclear energy as a means to increase quality of life for many around the world is remarkable,” said incoming ASIS President Geoffrey T. Craighead. “Seminar attendees will have an invaluable opportunity to garner ElBaradei’s unique, firsthand perspectives on global security and international law.”

A distinguished diplomat, international civil servant and scholar, ElBaradei served three terms as director general of the IAEA, an intergovernmental organization that is part of the United Nations system, with a mandate to make nuclear technology available for peaceful purposes and to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons. In October 2005, ElBaradei and the IAEA were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize “for their efforts to prevent nuclear energy from being used for military purposes.”

Gates’ 27-year career as an intelligence professional began in 1966 when he joined the CIA; it culminated with his serving as director from 1991-1993. He is the only secretary of defense in U.S. history to be asked to remain in that office by a newly elected president.

“Having served eight U.S. presidents in the course of his vast and distinguished career, Gates offers unparalleled personal insights into U.S. intelligence and defense strategies,” Craighead said. “His perspectives on global politics and world affairs are particularly relevant to our members and security professionals at large.”

Outside of the classrooms and general sessions, ASIS 2012 will present a robust showcase of the latest security products and services. The challenge for many will be navigating the more than 700 exhibits across more than 230,000 square feet to find the best solutions. ASIS offers a few tools for attendees to use to make the most effective and efficient investment of time while in Philadelphia. The first is the show planner. Attendees can preview exhibitor information and make appointments with manufacturers or service providers ahead of arrival. Secondly, attendees are encouraged to download the ASIS 2012 mobile application. This will put the very latest information on education and the show floor right in the palm of their hands.

Attendees will find information on some of the newest and most innovative technologies and service offerings featured in the ASIS Accolades competition, which identifies “Security’s Best” prior to the opening of the Seminar. The competition, launched in 2008, is open to all ASIS exhibitors and recognizes products and services that demonstrate advancements in technology or that extend a new level of service. View product information online pre- and post-show. Onsite, attendees can pick up a detailed directory of all entrants and visit the Accolades Showcase in the Exhibit Hall, in addition to talking directly to the experts at the exhibitors’ booths.

ASIS 2012 will host several networking events where professionals from around the world can connect. The week opens with the ASIS Foundation Golf Tournament, Young Professionals Reception and a Welcome Reception on Sept. 9. First-time Seminar attendees and new members are also invited to attend a special reception on that same day from 6 to 7 p.m.

This article originally appeared in the June 2012 issue of Security Today.

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