22 February 2016


This month Simon Banks talks to Alan McInnes, Director of Secured by Design (SBD), the UK Police flagship initiative that is founded on the principles of designing out crime and crime prevention.

Could you explain more about the purpose of SBD?

SBD was originally developed to improve the security of new building developments through the implementation of design features that research has shown can influence crime and provide minimum standards for physical security. This combination was repeatedly shown to reduce burglaries – in some cases by 50%. Key to this was identifying which products were evidenced to be effective. The prime method was to reference standards which demonstrated resilience to attack. The police services of the UK endorsed these principles and agreed to encourage crime prevention by awarding Secured by Design recognition to products meeting these standards. Recent years have seen standards upgraded as a result of police knowledge of new methods of attack.

Who is eligible for SBD approval?

Any product which has been tested against a standard demonstrating resilience to crime or a significant crime prevention benefit is eligible. Occasionally a product is unique or is an emerging technology which has not yet developed a bespoke standard. In these cases we may consider other independent evaluations of effectiveness. From the initial project which dealt with door and window security, we now accredit an expanding range of technology including lone worker systems, asset marking/recovery, safes, IT security and alarm signalling systems – as with CSL DualCom whom conform to EN50136.

How can the Specifier benefit from SBD?

Some technical standards are complex, others are upgraded as methods of attack or design change. SBD includes the term “Police Preferred Specification” and it is the specification which critically has police support through meeting the latest standard. Our website and brochures aim to describe product types and standards in easy-to-understand terms for non-technical specifiers and the public. We list all member companies, but only the SBD qualifying products, so it’s easy for specifiers to check. With 500 companies in the scheme there is a wide choice.

What are the future plans for SBD?

Whilst local policing experiences change we recognise that some crime prevention projects benefit from a national perspective. This is from pump-prime funding, to research and monitoring technical developments. SBD is financed through its commercial partnerships, not through public funds and we are better able to venture into these areas with assurance of our long-term commitment. For example we have negotiated with a growing number of national house builders to have all their stock house designs certified for security by meeting SBD standards. This makes security a positive sales point for the construction sector and has a benefit for the industry that has invested in having products tested. More importantly we know it reduces crime, reduces demand on policing and improves community safety.


You Said It!

“We are upgrading a lot of systems to @CSLDualCom recently dual path signalling or single path via their DigiAir® signalling system”

Tweeted by @crosbyintruder – Jan 26

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