Where would you rather be during an emergency? I pick California…


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I visited the California Emergency Management Agency (CAL-EMA), the combination of the former Office of Emergency Services and State Department of Homeland Security. I was attending the Sacramento Area Infragard Conference.

What is Infragard? you might ask. It is a private-public partnership with the FBI as the key promoter and sponsor of the alliance to help protect critical infrastructure from attack from malicious threat actors and pandemics etc.

AlertEnterprise attended as a vendor sponsor of the event. Representatives from various state agencies, law enforcement, services and security were present at the event to learn about and discuss cyber security, bio-terrorism, and protection of the food supply. Of great interest to all was the discussion of the H1N1 Flu Pandemic and the recommendations from a CDC (Center for Disease Control) expert. I had the opportunity to present the Security Impact Zones that AlertEnterprise adds value to. These are:
1. Securing critical business applications in regulated industries
2. Securing cyber assets for critical infrastructure of national importance
3. Information Assurance and Certification & Authorization for critical assets for Federal,
Military and Intelligence applications.

At the end of the session we got to tour the emergency management facility that sported a huge situation management room. This looked more like the state house chamber with a bank of wall size monitors in the front to display maps, TV feeds and other information. Each seat, in concentric semi circle rows had its own flat panel monitor, mouse, keyboard and a digital phone. Seating was assigned for key representative from various public agencies like CalTrans (California Department of Transportation), CDF (California Department of Forestry), FEMA, California State Police and many more. In the event of a public emergency there is even a place for the Governor of California (that’s right, the Arnold himself) to arrive with his staff and be situated in a private suite located off the main floor. There’s even a special media room for the press separated from main floor so that they can be updated on a minute by minute basis. No shortage of phone lines, data communication cables, satellite feeds, internet connections and anything else that supports staying connected while incidents are unfolding.

My hats off to all the dedicated public employees that are helping us at all times, during work and off-duty to make our homeland a safer place.

Now that’s security!