Security at the heart of construction projects

The threats of terrorism, cyberattacks, assaults and vandalism to public institutions and private-sector companies are growing day by day: security is taking its place at the heart of projects.

Through large-scale projects such as head offices, museums and the new Paris law courts building, the setec bâtiment teams have developed a specific approach with the dual objective of delaying intrusion as long as possible while ensuring earliest possible detection.

The starting point of a security project is consequently a risk analysis to identify the weaknesses of the project and the means of protection according to the specific risks. The security study must also take into account the functioning of the building through the various flows of persons and vehicles. Particular attention is paid to the evacuation issues, often in contradiction with the security objectives.

The implementation of building protection measures is defined rather like onion peel: the most sensitive areas are at the heart of the security concept and the outermost areas are the strongest. This involves taking a global view, encompassing the quality of the walls, the glazing materials and the windows and doors that constitute the facades of the buildings and the different areas.

These are passive measures: they are supplemented by active measures such as access control, intrusion detection, video surveillance, communication devices, motion sensors for exhibits, etc. Active measures are based on connected devices using high-technology application functions (image analysis, encrypted data transfer, etc.).

Beyond the physical aspects, most of the active systems communicate on data networks. This renders them vulnerable to external and/or internal cyberattacks. Consequently, the technical systems are supplemented by data security systems (firewall, VPN, authentication servers, etc.) and by implementation of good practices (password management, technology and software from different producers and of different nationalities, etc.), without which no upstream protection can be effective.


Data/signalling engineer
setec bâtiment
Bruno Pastor is the security strategies and technologies coordinator within setec bâtiment.His experience includes flagship designer projects such as the new Paris law courts, and drawing up security master plans for user customers.