End Users '20 under 40' 2014—Zachary Bettencourt

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Thursday, December 11, 2014

Zachary Bettencourt, 29

Global security programs manager, Facebook

As the manager of Facebook’s Global Security Programs team, Bettencourt’s responsibilities include driving the global security strategy through formal development and implementation of directives, processes and best practices; creating global learning and development training; and the maturity of security knowledge resources, communication and company security awareness initiatives. His team also enhances risk mitigation through the application of physical security design and standards and defines security routines, documentation, assessments and compliance. All of the Global Security Programs team’s initiatives are enabled through cross-company collaboration, engagement and internal/external partnerships. 

What inspired you to get into the security industry?

I started in the security industry at 17-years-old as a part-time uniformed retail security officer. My older cousin was the one who initially got me interested in the field, enticing me with stories of CCTV, investigations and some of the most interesting and unique situations that “you just had to be there” for. However, what inspired me to stay in the industry and make this my career is the impact and footprint that I believe our industry makes on the companies and, moreover, the people we protect.

If you could have any technology you wanted, without regard to budget, what would it be?

Coming from a security programs background, I am not as interested in the technology as I am in how it works in partnership with the human element. The most important aspect to me is that we are receiving a return on investment from our technology implementations to enable security teams to be more productive. For example, a fully integrated active and passive monitoring system that allows a security officer to elevate routines, enhance mobility and increase their responsibilities outside of active monitoring alone.  

 

What’s your biggest physical security challenge today, and what do you think it will be five years from now?

The biggest challenge the security industry faces today is the ability to quickly innovate. Physical security has slowly begun to evolve from the cliché view as “guards, guns and gates,” however, now more than ever, I view this as a mixture of technology solutions with a supporting officer element. The challenge now is how we make both of those solutions more proactive and productive and make them part of the physical security strategy. As security professionals we should assess and align our security programs to the values of a company, ensuring alignment at the core to drive the overall business forward. Then we should review the security strategyholistically, identifying where we can add innovation, challenge the status quo and develop a program that is no longer a cookie-cutter approach. A thought-provoking question I ask myself often is, “How do you secure a car without locking the doors?” This I feel is synonymous with the challenge over the next five years.