Resilient Security: Tough Calls in Tough Times


It’s not about security; it’s about resiliency. That was one of the underlying themes at the Power Grid Resilience conference in Philadelphia, March 21-23, at which WESCO Security exhibited, alongside our Government and Utility groups.

Of course, with “Resilience” in its name, the conference is already inclined toward resiliency. It’s an interesting differentiation, however: security as opposed to resiliency, or how to withstand and recover from adverse conditions. Security systems and planning are critical for enabling resiliency, but resiliency may be a more precise term to characterize the cost-vs.-risk formula that is applied to determine which measures to deploy in any environment.

Bob Kolasky, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Infrastructure Protection, for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, underscored that sentiment during Power Grid’s keynote speech. Speaking on the morning of March 22—just hours after the terrorist attacks in Brussels—Kolasky clearly had the news on his mind. He described Homeland Security’s numerous efforts to identify and address all potential hazards, ranging from terrorism to basic maintenance deficiencies. Yet, he admitted, “We can’t eliminate every risk.”

Security professionals do what they can to prevent, protect and defend, but there’s only so much anyone can do. Those charged with making these decisions have a tough job to thwart danger, be it from terrorists or just nefarious squirrels nibbling on transformers. WESCO understands the difficulties facing those involved in Critical Infrastructure Protection, and we give our thanks for professionals who are resilient, even in the toughest of times.

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