Archive for the ‘Protective Services and Investigations’ Category

What a Garbage Idea

January 4th, 2017 Comments off

Garbage Idea


Given the recent events in France and Germany, where large trucks were used as weapons to attack soft targets, security practitioners have had to rethink large public gatherings. To safeguard an event that takes place on a single stretch of road is pretty straightforward. Just put large concrete barriers or other large objects that act as bollards on both ends of the street, but what about events with multi-street openings?

New Year’s Eve in New York is the perfect example, and someone had a brilliant idea. Block intersections leading to Times Square with sanitation trucks filled with sand. They can drive up and then drive away once the event is over. Using concrete barriers for that many intersections would have been a much more time-consuming exercise.

Hats off to the team that came up with this ‘garbage’ idea. Hopefully, other events and public spaces incorporate something like this into their security plans whether it is an annual or yearlong venue.


Keep Still, and They Will Not See You

December 14th, 2016 Comments off


One of the latest viral trends is the ‘mannequin challenge’, and there have been some very creative ones. Even professional sports teams, celebrities and a group of guests at the White House got in on the fad.

Sometimes people will go to great lengths to get views.

When corporations conduct social media investigations on existing or potential employees, they typically look to see if that individual posted anything on their profile that may suggest they could be involved in criminal behaviour, radical affiliations or views not aligned with workplace human resource policies.

Well, would you believe that someone posted a video on Facebook of a bunch of friends, heavily armed doing the mannequin challenge? Once the police and thousands of other viewers saw the video, they were arrested.

Believe it. There are many more background screening and social media investigations examples. It is always worth a look.

AFIMAC Global Opens New Mexico Operations Center

October 17th, 2016 Comments off

AFIMAC Global is excited to announce the opening of our Operations Center in Mexico City, which will allow us to monitor and respond to our clients’ needs within the country 24/7/365.

This new capability within the Mexico security market also affords us the opportunity to introduce Emergency Response and GPS Tracking Services to organizations interested in providing an additional layer of security for their employees, executives, cargo, and other assets.

Our new Operations Center is part of a network, situated throughout the world that is staffed by highly trained security advisors actively monitoring and gathering intelligence information for our clients’ operations.

1) Emergency Response
2) Emergency Response Planning
3) GPS Tracking
4) GPS Geo-fencing
5) GPS Route Planning
6) 24/7 Direct Phone Line
7) Bi-lingual Staffed and Trained

Please contact +52 1 (55) 5292-2757 or for further information.


Spoiler Alert

September 26th, 2016 Comments off


Seeing this story on CNN got me thinking about some of the services that AFIMAC provides, and which are best to be open about vs. not.

Active Shooter (AFIMAC): Absolutely, not only would you want to let your staff know you have a plan, but you would want them to practice it, and even invite the local police/fire department to participate in drills.

Loss Prevention (ASAP): With the amount of shrinkage in retail outlets, the public just cannot be blamed for all of it. Keeping a loss prevention agent’s identity and schedule confidential would be best for potentially identifying internal theft.

Duty of Care for Travel (FocusPoint): Effectively managing a travelling workforce relies on employees practicing safe travel habits and keeping communication open with the company. Training staff on travel safety dos and don’ts as well as describing how falling outside of a travel plan could slow or halt response to an emergency for the traveller is key.

Investigation (AFIMAC): When trying to obtain evidence on drug use in the workplace, a suspicious benefit claim or similar, keeping the undercover agent undercover, is critical. It would be difficult to get evidence with a hidden camera when the subject is aware, like this Aviva Canada case.

Emergency Medical Transport (Going Home Medical): Having a company on call for a travel nurse, air ambulance or medical evacuation is important, but knowing details of your travelling workforce in advance is also essential. Advise staff on the plan, and get specific information about allergies, medical conditions, hospitals of choice, etc.



CEO Peter Martin discusses security issues at Rio 2016 Olympics on Fox News

August 9th, 2016 Comments off

AFIMAC Global CEO Peter Martin discusses security issues at Rio 2016 Olympics on Fox News Special Report.

Adam Curtis, AFIMAC Senior Director Corporate Investigations, quoted in Canadian Security article ‘Sharper Focus’

July 11th, 2016 Comments off

AFIMAC Global VP Ruben Mena discussing airport security on NBC Impact

July 6th, 2016 Comments off

AFIMAC Global Vice President Ruben Mena discussing airport security in the wake of the Istanbul attacks on NBC WTVJ Channel 6 on “Impact with Jackie Nespral” . Originally aired Sunday, July 3, 2016.

AFIMAC CEO, Peter Martin, Quoted in Bloomberg ‘Facebook Spent $12.5 Million to Protect Zuckerberg Since 2013’

April 29th, 2016 Comments off


Facebook Inc. revealed that it spent $4.26 million on security for Mark Zuckerberg last year, its first disclosure of such costs, and the highest among companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index that have filed proxy statements for fiscal 2015.

The expense brings the total cost from 2013 to 2015 to $12.5 million, according to a regulatory filing. The cost was “to address safety concerns due to specific threats to his safety arising directly as a result of his position as our founder, Chairman, and CEO,” the company said in the filing. Zuckerberg is the world’s eighth-richest person with $47 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Facebook spent $5.6 million for Zuckerberg’s security in 2014 and $2.65 million in 2013. Last year’s expense exceeds the $1.53 million Oracle Corp. spent to protect Executive Chairman Larry Ellison in fiscal 2015 and Inc.’s $1.6 million for Jeff Bezos, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The figure also outstrips other famous executives. Berkshire Hathaway Inc. paid $370,244 for personal and home security for billionaire Warren Buffett in 2015. Apple Inc. spent $209,151 on Tim Cook.

Facebook made the disclosure this week after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in August questioned why the costs had never been listed in filings as a taxable perquisite. In response, Facebook argued that a “business-oriented security concern” identified for Zuckerberg exempted it from having to report those expenses. After discussions with SEC staff, the company reversed its position, according to a filing.

Home Security

Facebook spokesman Jonathan Thaw declined to comment. Chief executives of global businesses are often required by their boards to travel on company-provided planes or cars even for personal trips. More than half of firms in the S&P 100 Index had such policies last year.

Facebook provides Zuckerberg with a home security system and guards who also protect his house in San Francisco’s Mission District. The team is overseen by a former U.S. Secret Service agent who protected President Barack Obama.

Security “should be a board of directors’ first and foremost concern,” especially at companies built around a central figure, said Peter Martin, chief executive of security consultancy AFIMAC Global. “As a shareholder, you want to make sure that your CEO is protected.”

Closer Look

That doesn’t come cheap. Each around-the-clock assignment requires four full-time guards, which annually can cost more than $80,000 each, said Christopher Falkenberg, chief executive of New York-based Insite Security Inc., which provides protection to clients including hedge funds. A security director can earn about $200,000 a year.

Recent terrorist attacks in two European capitals and an office shooting in San Bernardino, California, have prompted some boards to re-examine security. While the risk for a little known top executive may be low, a person’s public prominence can quickly change, much thanks to social media, Falkenberg said.

Oracle’s cost in fiscal 2015 was for security at Ellison’s residence. Home protection systems can include camera surveillance, pressure pads located near doors or walkways to detect movement, and dense vegetation or crushed gravel that’s noisy to walk on beneath windows to deter intruders, AFIMAC’s Martin said.

“It is important to keep the boss safe, but there comes a point — certainly south of the $1 million mark — where shareholders deserve a far clearer explanation of the risks and provisions and the justification,” said Michael Pryce-Jones, director of corporate governance at CtW Investment Group, which advocates for pension funds that collectively manage $250 billion.

Still, rigorous programs that come with steep costs can be warranted for some, said Paul Viollis, CEO of security provider Viollis Group International.

“It all comes down to having fiduciary responsibility,” Viollis said. “Not providing protection would be like going to the Super Bowl with nobody to block for the quarterback.”

Experto en seguridad de América Latina, Arturo Garffer citado en Miami Diario

March 4th, 2016 Comments off


También se exploró hacia dónde va el voto latinoamericano en el 2016

Garffer afirma que el terrorismo en el siglo 21 es asimétrico y muy dinámico. No hay una fuerza militar convencional que pueda prevenir al 100% un ataque en territorio americano o en cualquier parte de Latinoamérica.

“Las fuerzas terroristas sí han podido muy hábilmente venir desde diferentes países de Oriente y norte de África y movilizarse hacia Latinoamérica estableciendo santuarios,  como por ejemplo la triple frontera entre Brasil Paraguay y Argentina, o la frontera entre Colombia y Venezuela, y a partir de los cuales puedan movilizarse hacia los EEUU, dijo Garffer.


Latin América Director de operaciones

“No se trata entonces de una operación militar solamente sino también generar un movimiento de inteligencia que ser pueda traducirse en acción y prevenir la entrada de estos individuos a nuestros países sino también evitar que puedan establecer comunicaciones directas internas y externas entre ellos.” dijo.

Garffer considera que el Gobierno estadounidense ha sido débil en combatir este fenómeno porque no tienen ni la capacidad no el conocimiento de cómo lidiar con este fenómeno asimétrico. “No peleamos contra un ejército regular. Peleamos contra gente que no se ve e identificar a menos que ellos hagan algo que los ponga a la luz. La administración presente ha sido renuente a tomar riesgos y lamentablemente en los próximos 10 meses no va a cambiar su política. Se va a dedicar a sostener su política de ‘political correctness’, y no cumplir con el principal deber del Presidente de este país que es el de ser Comandante en Jefe y proteger la nación del peligro de otro ataque en nuestro territorio.” dijo.

La XIII Cumbre Latinoamericana de marketing politico y gobernanza continúaba con una interesante ponencia a cargo deCarlis Souto, experto en realización de mensajes políticos que fueron muy exitoso en campañas politicas realizadas en 1999 y 2003 titulado Politicas, Mentiras y Vídeo.

A continuación, el analista político y periodista colombiano Jairo Libreros reflexionó acerca de lo que muchos analistas observan como un cambio en el péndulo político en la región basados en el resultado electoral en Argentina, la victoria de las oposición venezolana en la elecciones parlamentarias el pasado 6 de diciembre y la victoria del No en el referéndum boliviano recién realizado este 21 de febrero.

Libreros difiere de esa visión. El analista es pesimista y cree que aún falta mucho tiempo para que ese cambio de péndulo se realice. En su opinión el Liderazgo autoritario y oportunista se seguirá imponiendo dada la desconfianza del ciudadano hacia las democracia.  El descontento popular y la erosión del público hacia la política es grande.

“No se para dónde va el voto latinoamericano, lo que sí les puedo decir es que de cada 10 votantes, sólo 3 están de acuerdo en mantener la democracia, y por otra parte la política va hacia la manipulación del descontento popular y la lealtad de las fuerzas de seguridad”. Lo que más le preocupa es darse cuenta de que quien pueda manejar la fuerza pública será exitoso en obtener el poder y no hará nada por ser leales a la democracia.

You Made Your Bed, Now Lie in It

February 23rd, 2016 Comments off

ME_SEP_DT_generic_FootballOne thing that has always pained me when playing team sports is when the rest of the team has to suffer consequences for another teammates actions. All too often during a close game, a teammate will do something that makes the team lose valuable time, field position, points and potentially the game.

Are we responsible to stop a teammate from swearing at the ref because they didn’t agree with the original penalty? We can try and quiet the offender after the fact so it doesn’t get any worse but could we have done something before the game? Absolutely. The team manager knows what that player is like and could have decided to discipline him or kick him off the team – but didn’t.  So the bed is made, now lie in it.

Recently in the news, a 20-year-old man said he received a homophobic Valentine defaced with slurs from a co-worker. The company, Party City now has to deal with the consequences of one of their ‘teammate’s’ actions. Is it fair to say, ‘you made your bed…’ in this case? Was the alleged offender known for stunts like this in the past?

What could Party City have done prior to hiring the alleged offender to verify if they were a potential liability? Background screening and a social media investigation might have helped, but if it didn’t, the company could have at least used pre-employment screening as a defense when the case inevitably ends up in court.

The cost for corporations having to react to something like this far outweighs the minimal expense of pre-employment background screening.

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