By Bruce Alexander
A past issue of Forbes magazine’s online edition has a must read article entitled “High-Security, High-End Homes” (http://www.forbes.com/2007/03/28/secure-tech-homes-
The article, written by Matt Woolsey, offers a glimpse into high end executive security features in the homes of some of the rich and famous.
There is a series of pictures accompanying the article of these super luxurious residences that boast equally superior security features. The photo tour of the various residences is entertaining but does not (as it should) provide specifics of the security features associated with each residence. However there’s more than a few interesting tidbits in the article. Take for example, the description of One Hyde Park, the luxury London homes purported to be the most expensive in the world at $165 million each. There are four penthouses at One Hyde Park each equipped with filtered air, bullet resistant windows and iris scanners (presumably so your latch-key kid living here doesn’t have to worry about losing his/her key anymore).
The article also highlights Los Angeles-based firm Strategically Armored & Fortified Environments, which designs high end executive security systems for the rich and famous. The more elaborate systems start at $1 million and include fortified polycarbonate and ballistic steel building materials and options for rooms including bio-chem protection.
The other interesting tidbit is that Oracle, the giant IT firm, spent $1.8 million in 2006 to protect Larry Ellison, Oracle’s founder and CEO. That seems to be a very reasonable investment considering that figure includes Ellison’s personal security as well as reportedly, the security associated with his two mansions.
This article does an excellent job of demonstrating that the principle of defense in depth does not have to be sacrificed in order to integrate security with ascetics. Executive Protection should be a multi-layer approach with each successive layer designed to mitigate the vulnerabilities associated with each layer. The rapid advances in technology has afforded our industry the opportunity to select, integrate and implement a wide range of physical security features at increasing affordable levels of investments.