Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Tip of the Day: All Global Employers Should Have a Mail Screening Program, Regardless of Location

Let me ask you a serious question.

If you work anywhere around the globe, does your employer, whether a public agency or a private corporation, have a comprehensive mail screening program, including communications delivered by a multitude of courier services (e.g., FEDEX, UPS, DHL) across the world?

If you're like most folks, you may not really know the answer to that question.

My suggestion is that you find out the answer...sooner rather than later. No, it's not an emergency, but it definitely falls into the need category.

Permit me to give you a hypothetical. It's Wednesday morning, you've gotten into the office and are about to sit down for that first cup of coffee or tea to wake you up from your commute into the office. 

Regardless, of where we live in the world, most of us, savor that moment.

It is now roughly 1030 hours, when most couriered packages first begin to arrive. Some may not be delivered until later in the day, depending upon the priority of delivery or perhaps due in part to the schedule of the specific courier service.

At about 1115 a uniformed courier arrives on your floor and tells you that he has a package for you. He has you sign for it. He leaves as quickly as he emerged.

Suddenly, it hits you!

Why is the uniformed courier delivering a package directly to you if there are people in the building who are ostensibly responsible for screening all incoming communications?

You continue to look down at the package you've just received and wonder to yourself, "Should I open it?"

What are the probabilities that it could be a...letter or package bomb?

 Alright, let's take ourselves out of "role" and think about this carefully.

Your first call should be to the person responsible for all incoming and delivered communications, providing you even know that such a person in your organization actually exists.

To short-circuit this, make a call to someone you trust to explain to you how all incoming correspondence is handled, processed, hopefully screened and then delivered. Administration would be a good place to start.

You soon discover that while all incoming correspondence is screened in the mail-room with various types of mail screening equipment, including metal detectors and even X-ray, you soon realize that not all couriered communications is screened unless it looks strange or suspicious, is hand-written, has incorrect spelling of the addressee, may be lopsided or bear special handing indicators such as "addressee only" or "confidential."

You say to yourself, this "doesn't sound very comprehensive or...thorough.

Fortunately, this risk ends up with your actually talking face-to-face with the person responsible for all incoming correspondence, including couriered deliveries.

You collectively agree that the screening program, such as it is, needs to be reviewed by a professional security manager experienced in such matters.

As time goes on, you find yourself becoming the conduit of a major review of the program aimed at tightening up vulnerabilities in the mail screening program so that all incoming correspondence and deliveries are professionally screened.

Even better, you soon discover that you receive a nice cash bonus because of your concern. Not bad! All because you asked a question!

The better news, of course, is that no one got killed or maimed or was disfigured for life.

If you don't believe these things actually happen, see the below link, dated June 11, 2014:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-205293/Euro-MP-letter-bomb-terror