Category: Articles

Free or non member articles

In case you missed it, ISDA has re-launched its much-acclaimed podcast – Executive Protection and Secure Transportation News. Every week we share secure transportation and executive protection knowledge, headlines, trends, educational content, and announcements from the International Security Driver Association and SecurityDriver.Com A new episode is published every Tuesday at 12 PM. You can find it in your favorite podcast app.

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EXECUTIVE VEHICLES ARE CHANGING - ESC

At one time, when bad things happened, it was all up to the driver to control the vehicle. The person holding on to the steering wheel made all the decisions. The driver was the algorithm that determined the outcome of the event.

Now computers control executive vehicles, and in an emergency scenario, accident, or vehicle violence, the executive vehicles rely on the computer algorithm to control the vehicle.

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The Joystick Driver

The Joystick Driver

Any and every security driver who has been out working for a while has been through this, and some go through it every single day. A very frustrating ordeal that could jeopardize the whole protection program and any transportation movement in a moment’s notice. This causes a lack of focus, disruptive lack of planning ahead, frustration, and damage to dynamic teamwork. It undermines the whole effort of trying to escort/transport a principal from A to B safely. I am talking about having a Close Protection Officer (CPO) on the right seat next to you – trying to micromanage every aspect of your driving – like he could control all of your actions and movements with a joystick-like a video game.

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All security drivers need a firm foundation in defensive driving and vehicle dynamics. After all, if you can’t drive, you can’t escape a potentially dangerous situation.

Being a professional security driver means having the ability to drive out of a situation and having the knowledge to use the vehicle to its fullest potential, whatever the weather or vehicle type.

Many security drivers will use a different type of vehicle from on task to another, requiring them to understand the many intricacies and types.

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As someone who has worked in the Executive Protection (EP) industry for more than 40 years, and have operated a licensed EP/Security/PI agency providing Executive Protection and Protection Driving for 30 years, I felt compelled to talk about this topic to clarify some of the issues regarding independent contractors (IC) and employee (1099 vs W2) status as it pertains to our industry.

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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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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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To get a better understanding of the Dangers of Distracted Driving, we can use a phrase associated with security and security driving – “The Kill Zone.” Although the term Kill Zone is used by the security community, it can also describe any scenario that creates an emergency for the driver and passengers. Not looking where you are going for 2 to 3 seconds falls into that category.

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Autonomous Vehicle Levels

It seems that every news agency and certainly every auto-enthusiast magazine and blog are discussing autonomous vehicles and the technology that goes into making vehicles self-driving. What isn’t really discussed or understood is that there are different levels of self-driving.

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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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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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Social Media Metrics

Social Media Metrics

How do you know if all of your efforts on social media are working for your business? You need to measure your efforts and track your social media metrics. You need to look past likes, reactions, followers, connections, etc. as KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators).

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alqaeda

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

the-executive-protection-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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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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Overview of Indeed Job Website

If you are looking for a job, whether it’s to get your foot in the door, or taking your career to the next level, the only person who can find the right job for you – is you. You know all the details about you: what experience and training skills you have, the location you would like to find work, the market/niche you want to work in and with what companies.

But where do you look to find the best jobs?

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intro-executive-vehicle

This is a promotional video of an upcoming series of online training. The series will discuss in detail the decisions that need to be made when selecting an executive vehicle. The ISDA online training are free for ISDA members and offered at a fee to non-members. All recorded webinars and materials will be available on the ISDA website long after the webinar.

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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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newsletters-montage

Starting in the mid 1980’s the Scotti School published a quarterly newsletter for the Protective Services Community. They were hard copies distributed in the old fashion way – US mail. Over the years the newsletter morphed into the ISDA Email Newsletter. ISDA is an acronym for the International Security Driver Association. Although concentrating on secure transportation, the newsletter is of value to all in the protective services profession.
Through the combination of our newsletters and the ISDA Network, ISDA members reach more than 7,500 security practitioners, representing the Corporate, High Net Worth, Military, and government communities. Many of those who read the newsletter cannot be reached via the traditional social media outlets.

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