CSAA’s John Lombardi Considers How the Economy Will Affect the Industry in 2012

Politics and Legislation

Lombardi: As the world of security has gone global, the politicians and legislators have to think and legislate on many levels. The challenge is having the legislators understand the industry’s positions and then passing appropriate legislation. From a regulatory standpoint, new standards are constantly being developed. Each standard typically results in advancements to a system’s design thus offering new opportunities.

Risks and Threats

Lombardi: 9/11 changed the entire landscape of the security industry. It took months for our industry and the rest of the free world to fully digest those events. It caused a shift in consumer thinking from having security as a convenience to more of a necessity has impacted many walks of life. Although industry changes have been slow, they have been steady. Due to the increasing sophistication and brazenness of illegal and terrorist acts, the industry must vigilantly and aggressively learn to apply smart technologies in a preventative manner rather than in a reactive manner. As these new technologies, their integration and applications become the core of the industry’s future, they should be readily accessible and affordable to the public. Additionally, our goal is to continue to develop preemptive technologies and products that expose these acts before they materialize.

Ongoing Challenges

Lombardi: The market is now inundated with service providers offering a changing means of alarm signal communication and the mechanisms that process signals. Our challenge is to embrace these new technologies while remaining the dominant force in the market. Additionally, our industry image is sorely lacking in the marketplace. We are not recognized as security professionals nor does the public at large equate our services with value. Due to the fact that much of the security alarm market has become commoditized, we have lost our perceived worth in the eyes of the consumer. The industry as a whole needs to begin taking steps to permanently and positively change this perception.

Projecting 2012

Lombardi: Overall, I am expecting a better year ahead. The market has been reluctant to invest in security for the past four years due to economic circumstances. The market is, however, beginning to appreciate the value in video surveillance as a method of reducing costs and controlling situations. With traditional security systems, moving forward, the consumer will and should expect to benefit from the new technologies. However, they may be forced into making some decisions based on the current changing communication environments and mandated system upgrades.

Final Thoug

Lombardi: The changes moving forward are not going to be immediate or even obvious; however, they are going to occur. The most effective way to meet change is to prepare. Education and continuing education for all employees is paramount. Participation in industry associations provides a broader perspective to work with.


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About the Author


Scott Goldfine is the marketing director for Elite Interactive Solutions. He is the former editor-in-chief and associate publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He can be reached at [email protected].

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