Author: Tony Scotti

From Moro in the late ’70s, to Herrhausen in the ’80s, and Reso in the ’90s, and more recently Omar García Harfuch in 2020, there has been a common denominator. In each of these attacks, surveillance detection has played a significant role in the scenario’s outcome.

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Science of Driving - What if - scenario base driver training

Many times, when we examine a vehicle ambush, the discussions will always ask the question “What If.” What if the driver moved the steering wheel a half a second sooner – applied the brakes a second earlier – made a decision quicker – had the ability to use more of the vehicle capability.

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Job Opportunities

July 10th Global Director, Corporate SecurityCompany Name Whirlpool CorporationCompany Location Benton Harbor, Michigan Sr Program Manager, Executive SecurityCompany Name T-Mobile Company Location  Bellevue, WA, US Residential Security Team…

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These are the results of the Coronavirus Survey.

The number of participants makes the survey statistically accurate for our association, but not for the general EP/Secure Transportation community.

The demographics of ISDA are not similar got the profession in general; Hence I would estimate the data is not statistically accurate for the security professional.

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security driver training and braking

We strongly suggest that anyone who attends a Security Driving training program is measured in accordance with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 135. This is the standard that is used to measure vehicle braking performance. As a security driver, you must be able to perform at a much higher level than “minimum” (it is what you get paid to do).

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Marketing by Innuendo

Security Driving Marketing by Innuendo

Over the last few years there have been a few training providers and security driver instructors that use the standard and methodology I created, and by association attach me to their training or instructor credentials. Some have used the phrase “Scotti-Certified Instructor.” With some, that may be correct, but the question is “When did I teach them?” So let me set the record straight.

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Security Executive Council

Security Executive Council

The Security Executive Council is a research and advisory firm that focuses on corporate security risk mitigation strategies and plans. Among the services they offer is a free series of videos covering all aspects of security.

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Security Industry Publications


The Security Industry has its own set of publications. This is a short list that covers a broad spectrum of publications. The list includes Circuit Magazine, a publication for Bodyguards which many of our members are contributors, and the Harvard Law School – National Security Journal.

View the Security Industry Publications

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U.S. abduction Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai

After dawn prayers Oct. 5, 2013, Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai, a wanted al-Qaeda terrorism suspect, returned to his family’s home in Tripoli, Libya.

He stopped his car in front of the house, nestled in an affluent neighborhood in the coastal capital city. It was 6:38 a.m. and still dark.

A white van trailing Ruqai pulled alongside his car. Then at least three men, with guns drawn, jumped out of the van as another car blocked Ruqai’s escape and a third vehicle idled down the street.

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Vehicle Static Stability Factor

Science of Security Driving

To ensure the safety and security of the principal, security drivers and secure transportation providers should understand that all vehicles have inherent characteristics that decrease the performance of the vehicle, and create a dangerous scenario for the principal. One of those characteristics is the vehicle’s static stability factor (SSF).

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When vehicle violence occurs, the Security Driver needs to have all three side of the ”Security Driver Triangle” working for them. However, there have been scenarios where two sides of the triangle (The Driver and the Vehicle) overcame weakness in the third side (The Environment), none better than the 1995 motorcade attack on Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze.

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ISDA Podcast


As you may have noticed, we have been posting Executive Protection and Secure Transportation flash briefings via Social Media. In short, it is a podcast.

We created the Executive Protection. and Secure Transportation news brief podcast on April 1st. The goal is to create a new marketing platform that allows our members to take advantage of the growing number of people that use podcasts as a source of news and educational material.

A little more than a month into the briefings, the metrics are encouraging. Over 2,700 listeners have downloaded the Podcasts from 57 countries, and the numbers are increasing exponentially.

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ISDA has created the Member Spotlight Program. We will be posting an ISDA member every week or twice a month, depending on member participation. The Spotlight is created from your profile as it appears in the membership directory.

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ISDA Member Directory

The goal of the Member Directory is to get your information out to the ISDA Network. Whether it be about your company, you, your history, what services you offer, or training you offer. Keep in mind that ISDA is relatively new, but our Network is 40 plus years in the making, we have been communicating with that network, via the newsletter for approximately 30 years. Long before there was Social Media (Decades Before), there was a Scotti School Newsletter. We suggest you fill out your bio for the member directory.

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One of the advantages of age – and so far the only advantage I have found – is that I have been a witness to some of the events that changed the way the industry works and trains. These were “game-changing incidents”–vehicle attacks that rewrote the rules for close protection and security driving.

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When Stuff Happens Part One


For decades our mantra has been, “When Stuff Happens, You Can’t Be Average.” This is the first in a series of articles that will cover that moment in time “When Stuff Happens.”

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The Computer Chip in Your Butt

Computer chip in your butt

When a vehicle is approaching its limit of adhesion, a driver has two conflicting signals. The first signal is the steering wheel getting light, which means that it requires less effort to increase steering input (turn the steering wheel). The reason for this is that the adhesion the tire makes with the road is getting increasingly smaller – quickly.

The second signal is the vehicle load the driver feels at the back of the seat (their butt), which at the limit of adhesion is high.

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Science of Security Driving

Using 80% or above of the vehicle’s capability would more than likely only happen during an emergency (accident or ambush). But what percentage of the vehicle does a Security Driver use while maneuvering through the day to day mundane chore of moving the boss from Point A to Point B, such as driving up to an intersection and slowing down – stopping at a red light – driving on an off ramp or around a corner?

To answer that question, ISDA conducted an experiment.

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What does a lot of knowledge look like? How about two, two-inch-thick books?

A while back Joe and I decide to put all our articles, posts, white papers, and research not yet published, together in one document.

The goal of collecting the information was to determine if we had enough material for a book. When the information was collected, the results were two, two -inch-thick books. So I guess the answer is yes. The attached is a picture of one of the books, the table of contents is three pages long for each book.

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Blink of an Eye Metric Version

Security Driving is a decision-making process that requires the driver to manage time and distance, and anything that slows that process down can and often does become an emergency. Whether driving the boss to work, in a low-risk environment or driving an armored vehicle in a high-risk environment, understanding the basic principles of managing time and distance is life-saving knowledge.

Our frame of reference for measuring time and distance is the speedometer which supplies information in units of kilometers and hours – KPH. The driver does not have an hour or a kilometer to make life-saving decisions; in a vehicle emergency, Kilometer Per Hour is an irrelevant unit of measurement.

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Driving in the Middle East

driving in the middle east

According to the U.S. State Department, motor-vehicle crashes – not terrorism or crime – are the No. 1 cause of death of Americans traveling abroad. Driving in environments similar to the Middle East can lead to serious issues. A duty of care requires some simple precautions.

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These pictures are taken from the Al Qaeda magazine Inspire, Issue 16. This issue of the magazine offers lessons on building a pressure cooker bomb and where, when and how to detonate the bomb for maximum effectiveness. The picture outlines the four steps in building a successful pressure cooker bomb.

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The EP Skills Gap


A Skills Gap is defined as the difference between what the market wants and what is available for skill. This is a common problem in all industries. In an attempt to get a better understanding of the Skills Gap that exists in the Executive Protection/Secure Transportation profession, ISDA researched the job market. Our goal was to determine the skills, education and training, and experience that are the most sought after by the Executive Protection job market.

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The recent video of a Secret Service Agent driving the Presidential Limo in reverse around Lime Rock Race Track took the social media by storm. According to some reports the video received 40 Million views. The majority of those viewing the video were under the impression that the video was real, but actually, it was an excellent animation. Truth be told, the first time I looked at it, I thought it was real.

The video did create many questions concerning the skills needed to drive in reverse.

So for those working in the Secure Transportation profession; some thoughts on backing up.

Here are some quick points on backing up when the objective is to escape the Kill Zone

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Principal Protection - Rick Colliver

Finally, a book for both public and private sector protection professionals who are required to manage protective operations with a minimum of headcount and budget, in an increasingly complex and demanding environment.
As the title suggests, this book is about the lessons learned through several thousand years of trial-and-error, creating and adopting best-practices, striving to provide protection for persons of public interest and others at risk.

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Inside the Bubble is a new book authored by ISDA Member Mark James. Mark came to the Protective Services Profession via the corporate community. He is a former corporate executive and performance consultant to Fortune 500 companies and now executive director of a full service protection agency, Panther Protection.

Although Mark is emphatic that his book is not about “Protective Services”, and we agree, it is a book that should be read by all security practitioners.

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Job vs Career

Are you training for a career or a job?

It seems that one of the most asked questions on social media is – What EP/CP training program should I attend? Those that ask that question need to ask one of themselves – What are my goals? Are you looking for a career or are you satisfied with a job? What is it that I want from the training program and what will be my training ROI? It must be noted that many of the high-level EP Practitioners have never attended an EP Training program.

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Stop Gaps by Tom Taylor

If you enjoy reading and are involved in the profession, ISDA Member Tom Taylor supplies you with a great reading and learning experience. Tom as authored a series of novels based on the EP profession. Tom takes the day to day tasks of a protection team and turns them into a page turning work of fiction. All of Tom’s novels are executive protection handbooks, masquerading as novels. We (ISDA) are a bit prejudice, but in our minds Tom’s novels are better than many EP books.

EP Novels By Tom Taylor

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