California Has Highest Number of Gun Murders: Secure Your Property and Stay Safe

most dangerous state in America
Image: Rolling Stone

In July, Rolling Stone magazine developed an interactive map that detailed the Most Dangerous States.   Their criteria for ranking states revolved around the presence of guns, and the number of gun-related deaths.

While Alaska led the list of those states with the Highest Number of Gun Deaths per 100,000 Residents, California was the leader in the category of Total Gun Murders.

Alaska is largely a wilderness where residents keep guns for hunting and to protect themselves from wild animals. The high number of guns in that state, along with its relatively low population, explains why it has the highest number of gun deaths per 100,000.

California is a different matter. Despite the fact that the State has taken steps to reduce gun ownership for those previously convicted, and requires background checks when purchasing, gun violence remains prevalent.

The sheer number of people in the urban areas is one reason for this violence. Perhaps another explanation is drug trafficking and gang activities.

Despite the reasons, though, the fact remains that California is a violent state. In 2013, there were 151, 879 violent criminal acts, 7,464 were forcible rapes and 1,746 were murders. These numbers are based on convictions and do not take into account those incidents that occurred where there was not an arrest or conviction.

Security to prevent workplace violence

With over 14,000 workplace homicides in 2012, savvy property managers and business owners understand what these statistics mean and take steps to eliminate them. Violence in the workplace or at your property results in higher legal and insurance expenses. Therefore, you should take workplace security seriously.

Here’s a list of the top 10 most dangerous cities according to statistics of the FBI.

Control those costs by keeping security guards onsite from American Security Force. Having our highly trained and experienced officers at your property will reduce or eliminate trespassers and violent activity.

That’s because live guards represent the perfect security triple-threat to wrongdoers: They can witness a crime or one about to happen; they can call for backup or for the police; and they can intervene directly in stopping or apprehending criminals.

California is a beautiful place to live and work. But with it, comes the risk of violence. Let the leaders in specialized security solutions keep your property and business safe and secure. Call us today at 877-722-8585 to learn how onsite security guards from American Security Force can do that for you.



Body Cameras: Can They Protect Your Property?

body cameras for security patrol los angelesAfter the riots in Ferguson, MO and New York, President Obama promised that the federal government would provide 50,000 body cameras for law enforcement.

The intention behind this move was that with cameras mounted on police officers, they would not only follow the letter of the law, but there would also be documented evidence of what transpired during arrests.

With the role of security officers expanding today, and with the wider adoption of this technology by law enforcement, one has to assume that it is only a matter of time before wearable cameras will become standard equipment in the security industry.

Body Cameras Provide Transparency and Evidence

Security guards with American Security Force have had the ability to be outfitted with cameras for some time now. These body cameras will not only record and upload video, but also allow for streaming video. This ability allows managers and clients to have a real time view of what is transpiring remotely.

Stationary video surveillance cameras serve their purpose,  but the body cameras give an up close and personal point of view that the “eye in the sky” can’t capture.

Body cameras mean better security, as well. When events unfold quickly, memories are not perfect, even trained ones. When you add the fact that eyes don’t always see well in the dark, the value of recording officers while they are patrolling or protecting others becomes clear. Wearable cameras become a solution to human inabilities. They provide documented evidence of events.

The Fresno Police Department in Fresno, California has announced the integration of wearable cameras.

They also provide an added layer of transparency. When dealing with thieves, trespassers or those engaged in unlawful activities, body cameras provide property owners and clients with peace of mind. There will be video evidence to show what really happened.

Wearable cameras are also affordable. They are available for as little as $89 and, at that price, include built-in DVRs that record 720 X 480 HD video. They can capture still images in HD, as well.

Added security, enhanced transparency and affordability. Body cameras will be the next technology adopted by the security industry.

If you want to learn more about security guards with wearable cameras, contact Southern California’s provider of specialized security solutions. Contact American Security force at 877-722-8585.

How Today’s Mobile Apps Can Keep Your Property Safe

security word on digital smart phone isolated white background

There are thousands of apps for smartphones and tablets. Each performs a different function that, just a few short years ago, we did for ourselves, or was something we couldn’t imagine doing.

Today there are apps for nearly every aspect of our lives, both private and professional. The Security Guard Industry is no exception.

Smartphone and tablet apps for security tend to fall into one of two categories: reporting only and management and reporting

The reporting only apps allow guards in the field to do reports or logs on their mobile device. Once completed, the reports can then be uploaded to a central server, or emailed to a supervisor or client.

These apps provide a much more efficient means for reporting activities by eliminating paper reports. They also allow managers or clients to check on what’s happening throughout the day or night, providing instant access to security officer’s reports when they are needed.

More robust apps with management features are also available. These apps provide managers or clients with a higher level of input and control over their security.

Some allow managers to set up checkpoints in their app and pair them to the physical locations using barcodes or geotags. The barcodes are scanned and the app records that an officer arrived at a location.

Geotags are small devices with microchips inside that can be attached to a pole, fence, building or other stationary structure. As officers pass by the geotags, the app records their presence at that location. When an app recognizes the geotags, it shares that information with its online version.

There are some management apps that actually make it possible to view and manage a guard’s activities in real time. In addition to the monitoring guards and their performance, managers can schedule officers for their shifts through apps, deploy officers, and assign them to their routes.

Higher-level features available in some apps will allow onsite officers to record and post voice memos, photos and video.

To ensure our security officers have the most advanced app with the right capabilities, American Security Force developed GuardTrack. This security app was designed by security professionals, for security professionals. It meets the demands of the guard in the field, and provides them with the capabilities to accurately record conditions and communicate them back to the manager or client.

Guardtrack helps you to monitor your guards from dozing off on the job as well.

Image credit:
Image credit:

This mobile app gives managers and clients a real time view of what’s happening. Along with real time reporting and GPS tracking, GuardTrack can record and upload photos and video.

But perhaps the most valuable feature of this advanced app is the ability to stream real-time video. That’s something not found in other apps. This feature allows managers or clients to respond to situations in seconds, and removes that burden from the onsite officer, who is dealing with the situation at the scene.

When onsite officers attempt to apprehend dangerous individuals, streaming video will allow those monitoring to call for back up or notify law enforcement instantly. This ability is an incredible advantage to both officers in the field, and the businesses they serve. Seconds are often the difference between a situation being contained, or one growing out of control.

For businesses, out of control situations can result in increased costs caused by property damage, criminal charges or lawsuits.

Are you looking for a security guard provider that not only utilizes new technology but also develops it? Then call American Security Force today at 877-722-8585.

How to Protect Your Property From Copper Theft

protect your building from copper theft los angeles securityWe’ve seen this before in years past. When the economy turns down, copper thefts increase. That’s because there’s always been a demand for the metal. It is used in electrical work, plumbing, HVAC units, gutters, appliances and fiber optics.

Copper is also relatively easy to steal. It’s everywhere in the form of copper pipes, tubing and electrical wiring. The metal can literally be found in nearly every structure and construction site. When people are not around, thieves can have an easy time removing large quantities of the metal.

After stealing it, robbers sell copper for scrap. In recent years, prices have remained high, at about $3.00 per pound. This fact, along with a growing demand overseas, makes copper very attractive to would-be robbers.

Across the country, copper theft has grown to become a $1 billion industry.

When copper is stolen, the cost to businesses is much more than just the dollar value of the stolen pipe and wiring. According to, each dollar of stolen copper costs businesses $100 to replace.

To get at the copper, thieves often rip up walls and ceilings or destroy property. The damage they cause far exceeds the dollar value of the stolen copper. Insurance claims typically follow to get the property repaired, which can result in increased premiums.

Finally, there is the cost of employees’ time and lost productivity. Instead of having them do their regular jobs, they are now dealing with the aftermath of the copper theft.

The time, effort and cost involved after a copper theft could easily be avoided, though. The key is to keep a security guard detail at the property.

How to prevent copper theft

Onsite security officers bring a four-fold advantage:

  1. Their presence alone will prompt most would-be robbers to move on;
  2. They can stop robbers who make it onto the property before a theft begins, and damage is caused;
  3. They can call law enforcement after apprehending robbers and ensure prosecution;
  4. Staffing security guards is a much cheaper option than the cost of the damage caused by a copper theft.

Here’s a news clip about how thieves stole $40,000 in copper pipes from a construction site that had no security cameras or onsite security guards protecting the site causing delays and making the construction more costly.

The allure of easy money makes copper robbers brazen.   Nothing illustrates this point better than a recent story about burglars stealing copper from a Utah highway construction site. They made off with six miles of copper wire!

Tenants in a St. Louis apartment complex in July lost their water service when three thieves sawed through the water mains in the basement and walked out with the copper pipe—in daylight. To make matters worse, they did not turn off the water! The apartment complex experienced damage from the flooding.

Later that month, the copper pipe inside the very Montgomery, AL apartment where Rosa Parks lived when she made civil rights history was removed. The copper thieves heavily damaged Park’s former home.

California is not immune to this trend, either. It is one of the top five states for copper thefts. In 2013, robbers caused entire Fresno neighborhoods to go dark by stealing the copper wiring from street light maintenance boxes. Thieves even took the wiring from freeway lights, signs and metering signals, putting drivers at risk.

In Sacramento, there has been a rash of copper thefts from public utilities over the last three years.

Ninety per cent of these thefts occur at night when people are not around. To reduce the likelihood of serious copper losses, and the resulting costs, businesses need to secure their properties with onsite security guards.

American Security Force is Southern California’s leading security guard supplier. We develop specialized security solutions to meet our clients’ needs. Our officers are highly trained and experienced professionals and can supply the needed security to thwart would-be copper thieves.

To learn more about how we can secure your property from copper theft, call us at 877-722-8585.



Can Your Corporate Culture Influence Workplace Violence?

workplace violence securityThe workplace often mimics trends and attitudes in the real world. People bring their different temperaments, talents and convictions into work with them.

When they conflict with another person’s, tempers could flare and if pushed, violence might result.

In 2009, there were an estimated 572,000 nonfatal violent crimes in the workplace, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics’ National Crime Victimization Survey.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) reports that between the years of 1992 and 2012 there were over 14,000 workplace homicides. That’s an average of 700 workplace murders per year!

A 2012 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report shows violence was the cause of 17% of all U.S. work related deaths.

From these statistics, it’s safe to assume that businesses are not immune from the violence happening in our larger society.

While having a security guard from American Security Force onsite can often reduce bullying or workplace violence, a further step that businesses can take is addressing their culture. Part of that is taking on the long-standing attitude toward that witnesses have about reporting what they see.

In American culture, there is an unspoken rule going back to when we were children that you don’t report friends or co-workers to superiors if they are doing something wrong. Put plainly, you don’t “rat” on a friend.

This unspoken rule has allowed bullying and hidden workplace violence to go unpunished. Often times, business leaders will look the other way as long as nothing serious happens, excusing the behavior with platitudes such as, “Boys will be boys,” or, “That’s the way it’s always been here.”

Those attitudes only enable the wrongdoers, and breed complacency within the culture, giving the impression that nothing will change. The result is that good employees who have experienced bullying or violence leave. Those left behind are not the productive, caring employees that you truly want working for you. With this group, the opportunity for workplace violence increases.

Here’s an example video showing you how workplace violence can escalate:

When this is happening, a transformation in the corporate culture is needed. Your goal should be to have employees feel safe enough to report bad events to their superiors when they see them.

Changing corporate culture to minimize workplace violence

To achieve this transformation, a total evaluation of the culture is needed. Policies and practices need to be assessed. Those that support the goal of creating a safe, respective workplace should be kept or created. Those that don’t meet that goal need to be thrown out, or revamped.

A good rule thumb while going through this assessment is to remember that corporate culture that you’re trying to create comes first and should have primacy over policy. In other words, your policies must support the culture.

It is also a trial and error process. Managers might notice that day-to-day policies simply aren’t supporting the culture. If that is the case, senior management needs to be open to making policy changes that truly will transform the culture.

The U.S. Department of Labor has instituted a Workplace Violence Program that can be used as a guide to help your business identify strategies to transform your corporate culture. A safe, respective, workplace creates a workforce that is more loyal and productive. In the end, that means a more profitable business for you.

OSHA also has information to help employers to comply with the OSHA law at their website.

To learn more about keeping your workplace safe, visit our website at You can also call us at 323-722-8585 to speak to one of our representatives.



Tips for Property Managers to Help Keep Your Property Safe

office building security guard company los angeles

Property managers have a long list of concerns. Things like budgeting, tenant liaison, maintenance, janitorial services, supplies, and communication with tenants and the board are just a few. Also on that list is keeping the property secure.

There are multiple ways to do that, but the most efficient is to post a security officer onsite. American Security Force specializes in supplying highly trained security officers for your business. The presence of a live person is an effective deterrent. Thieves and vandals are less likely to approach and enter your property when a security guard is there.

That’s because live guards represent the perfect security triple-threat to wrongdoers: They can observe a crime, or one about to happen; they can call for backup or for the police; and they can intervene directly in stopping or apprehending criminals.

Thieves and vandals understand this triple-threat instinctively, and stay away when live guards are present.

In addition to onsite security, property managers can take steps to secure their property further. It starts with removing the opportunity for criminal action. Encourage your tenants or employees to keep valuables out of sight. Remove them from desks, move them away from doors and windows, and be sure they are not visible in cars. Remove the opportunity and thieves will pass by.

Security company for office buildings and properties in Los Angeles.

Installation of security cameras and remote monitoring security is a necessary step for property managers to take. Lights with motion detectors can increase the nighttime illumination, making the property less attractive to criminals. Lighting on timers has the same affect, and provides the illusion that someone is actually present to turn them on.

Maintenance on buildings is on going. There’s always something that needs done. When working outside, remind crews that they should not leave tools and ladders laying out over night. These can be used to reach or pry open windows and doors. Building materials such as 2×4 studs or bricks can also be used to open locked doors or windows, or to vandalize the property.

The doors and windows themselves should also be reviewed to make sure they are secure. Outer doors should be constructed of either metal or solid wood and have deadbolts installed.

Make sure your windows lock, and if you are located in a high-crime neighborhood, install bars on the ones located on the lower floors. It’s also possible to install burglarproof glass on those windows that are easily reached.

If you do have security guards, the ecurity guards must have an hourly plan on the premises and need to stay alert. They cannot and should not be allowed to sleep on the job like in the video below.


Finally, getting to know the neighborhood you are in is very important to keeping your property secure. If you have residential neighbors nearby, get to know them. They can often tell you what is happening at your site when you’re away.

It’s also good to learn the routines of those who travel past your property. Often just watching the goings-on outside can give you a clue to whether or not your site is being observed.

These simple tips will add to the security of your property, reducing crime and vandalism, and ensuring the safety of your tenants or employees.

If you’re looking for more information about ways you can secure your property, view our website to see how we help businesses with our security officers. You can also contact us or call us at 323-722-8585.




Remote Monitoring Gives You Peace of Mind…And is Easier on Your Budget

remote monitoring security for los angeles businesses

Business owners and property managers in Southern California deal with many issues. One that might keep them up at night is worry over what is happening at their property after hours, while they are not there.

One answer that might help is having a security guard on the premises. But because of budgetary concerns, that is not always the right solution for all businesses.

But, as it has done in other industries, technology can provide an alternative.

Recent advances in wireless and internet technology have made remote monitoring a more affordable security option for businesses.

Today’s technology allows for smaller cameras with better resolution that can operate wirelessly. This means that cameras can be placed anywhere, without the need for running electric and video cables.

Remote monitoring security company in Los Angeles

To make use of this advanced technology, American Security Force upgraded our entire technology infrastructure.   The upgrade included new modems and fiber optic cable to increase video download speeds. In addition, we created an advanced, command center that will allow us to remotely monitor the properties of our clients who enroll in our Remote Monitoring service.

It provides an affordable alternative to 24-hour, onsite security guards for clients with budget constraints. The service is simple and straightforward.

We install high-resolution, wireless cameras around your business property. Our staff will then monitor your property remotely, at our command center. If there is a problem, we will call the proper authorities.

As part of our Remote Monitoring service, we also offer a reception service that can take calls for your business after hours.

Our Remote Monitoring service provides property managers and business owners with the peace of mind of knowing that their property is being monitored when they are away. It is also an attractive alternative for those with tight budgets. You won’t spend the additional money to have a security guard onsite after hours.

To learn more about our Remote Monitoring service, visit our website You can also call us at 323-722-8585 to speak to one of our representatives.

One St. Louis Suburb Used Private Security to Protect Their Property During the Ferguson RiotsSecurity, Security guard, Security officer, American Security Force

Ferguson, St Louis riot for Michael BrownA grand jury’s decision not to indict white Police Officer Darren Wilson in the August fatal shooting of an 18-year-old African-American, Michael Brown, resulted in rioting, fires and looting Monday night in the City of St. Louis, Missouri and its nearby suburb, Ferguson.

Eighty-two people were arrested in the two municipalities. Local police reported hearing over 150 shots fired throughout the night, and Missouri National Guardsmen were called out to secure the Ferguson Police Department. Angry residents displayed their frustration over the decision by confronting police, looting stores, and burning strip malls.

Both Ferguson and St. Louis geared up their respective police forces for the possibility of rioting in the preceding months. The police in Ferguson spent over $100,000 since the August riots purchasing body armor, tear gas handcuffs and other crowd control items, expecting the worst.

Interestingly, the grand jury responsible for the decision did not meet in Ferguson or St. Louis. Instead, it convened in the wealthy suburb of Clayton. Because of that fact, the predominantly white residents did not just rely on law enforcement to protect them from rioters, but took extra precautions to do the job. They hired private security firms.

Private security guards contracted to protect Ferguson and St Louis from rioters.

Businesses and individuals have contracted with several St. Louis-based security companies in the last few weeks in preparation of the decision. One was Asymmetrical Solutions. Their plan was to send operatives to areas they believed would be flashpoints.

Their philosophy of riot preparedness and response is markedly different from that of leaders in Ferguson and St. Louis. There, armored police were sent out to confront rioters with teargas. Asymmetrical Solutions chose not to put fighters in the field, but to instead send “thinkers and managers.”

Another area firm, Securitas, posted officers at malls, banks power plants and businesses. They also offered an elevator escort service for corporate officers. Their escorts could either be armed or unarmed. With the buildup to Monday night’s rioting, the requests for unarmed were nearly nonexistent.

Private firms also monitored social media for threatening mentions against their clients, and developed alternative driving routes for corporate employees to get to and from work. One firm removed any moveable items that would be found outside of a business, such as statues or waste cans, because they could be used to break glass doors and windows.

The security that Clayton residents and businesses employed costs money. But the cost is significantly less than that of rebuilding a home, a business, or a life.

Private security firms offer much more in the way of service than public law enforcement ever could. The philosophies, the strategies and the tactics employed are forward thinking, not confrontational. Private firms also provide a level of one-on-one personal service that is unimaginable from law enforcement today.

Riot footage from Feruson

Simply put, private security looks after the interests and the well-being of their clients. In life- and property-threatening situations, isn’t that the peace of mind that you are after?

American Security Force regularly provides that peace of mind to individuals and businesses in Southern California. We are uniquely qualified to deliver that same level of service and protection during times of local crisis. Our security officers are highly trained and experienced, and can meet a wide range of security needs.

When Southern California is in a time of crisis, or when you just want to ensure your security or that of your business, call American Security Force at 877-722-8585.



Is This The Future of Security for Your Property?

k5 robot security guards the future of security guards

Technology seems to move at an ever increasing pace these days. At times, it seems like we are living in that distant-future that we imagined as kids.

Here’s further proof that we are and it’s impacting the security guard industry.

Meet the K5 Autonomous Data Machine. It looks like a combination of a Dalek from the TV show Doctor Who and EVE from the movie Wall-E. K5 was designed to operate in a security capacity. It has the ability to patrol an area, and recognize and report any anomalies it senses.

K5 has no weapons. But it has been equipped with GPS, laser-ranging technology, and an array of sensors that detect movement, sound and changes in temperature and barometric pressure. If an anomaly is detected, K5 can emit an alarm and uses Wi-Fi to connect with the command center and call for human backup where security guards can respond within seconds.

Are robots replacing security guards?

The Microsoft campus in Silicon Valley is the first business to use K5. They currently have five of the 300-pound, five-foot-tall units on patrol. If someone attempts to tamper with or harass K5 while it is policing an area, it will emit an alarm and contact the command center. Then an operator can talk with anyone there using the proprietary, browser-based software.

The company Knightscope of Mountain View, California developed the security robot. Along with the five patrolling at Microsoft, only two others have been constructed by the company thus far.

Is K5 meant to completely replace security personnel? Stacy Stephens, Vice-President of Sales and Marketing and cofounder of Knightscope says not necessarily. Her description of K5’s role in security is that it, “…takes away the monotonous and sometimes dangerous work, and leaves the strategic work to law enforcement or private security, depending on the application.”

Knightscope is hoping to begin employing the robots widely in 2015. The charge will be just $6.25 per hour.

With a new technology like K5, the real question remains, is it ready for the real-world security challenges it will meet? The following might be an indication that it is not. During an interview for their article on K5, a reporter witnessed one robot roll off a sidewalk and topple over. It needed human help to stand it upright again.

While K5 represents and interesting first step in automated security guards, it is not the final step. K5 can only detect and report. It is not able to intervene, or use good judgment. Only human security officers can offer those services. You probably don’t want to use a K5 in a high-security-risk area, either, because of its limited abilities. Humans would be the best choice. Its physical form of movement, rolling on wheels, also means that it can’t be used well in areas with stairs or sidewalks.

But K5 is intriguing. It offers an interesting look into the future. K5 shows us the possibility of what could be a high-tech, security augmentation that is just around the corner.

For more information about onsite, specialized, security solutions for your business, call us at (323) 722-8585, or click here to contact us.

Are Your Voice Communications Secure?

secure cell phone comminication, mobile phone encryptionCell phones operate differently than the phones most of us grew up with in our homes. Those were landline phones, which are a closed system where the signal travels along a cable. Because the signal never leaves the cabled system, there is a measure of security built into the technology.


Cell phones, on the other hand, are basically a radio. They send a radio signal to a cell tower that receives the signal and puts it into the wider telephone system. Because of the radio frequency (RF) transmission through the air, cell phone conversations can be intercepted through the use of radio scanners, fake cell towers and intercept systems.

For businesses, this can be a disaster, as sensitive information is often discussed across the cellular network.

Watch this video to see how any cell phone can be hacked and how they can listen to everything you say…even when you are not on the phone!

How to encrypt your cell phone calls

There is a way, however, to achieve secure voice communications over cell phones. American Security Force offers a cost-effective, hardware-based solution that encrypts the RF signal making it secure. It’s called Vigilant Call.

The technology works with iPhone, Android, and Blackberry smartphones. The Vigilant Call Micro-SD Engine looks like a typical Micro-SD card. When placed in the card slot of the cell phones on both ends of the conversation, it creates a random, secure encryption key that also authenticates the traffic.

The result is a secure call that travels from the originating mobile device, through the network, to the destination cell phone.

Vigilant Call is certified by the Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS). For the medical, financial or government sectors, it is also compliant with HIPAA, GLBA, SOX and FISMA.

The Vigilant Call encryption module is certified by the National Institute of Standard & Technology, as well. Its CC EAL5+ security level can resist any and all network attacks.

American Security Force offers the Vigilant Call service to business clients looking for secure, cellular communications. The service allows our security guards to communicate with each other, or the client, without the risk of conversations being intercepted or recorded unknowingly.

Contact us today to learn more about the Vigilant Call service with American Security Force.