Perimeter security: What you need to consider

According to the latest Commercial Victimisation Survey, business premises in all sectors experienced some form of crime in the last 12 months. This includes:

  • Wholesale and retail (40%)
  • Transportation and storage (40%)
  • Manufacturing (30%)
  • Agriculture, forestry and fishing (24%)
  • Information and communication (15%)
  • Coupled with the current global security situation, risk and security managers at many companies are rethinking their perimeter security as they find that their properties are not adequately secured to prevent breaches. The physical threat of burglary, theft, vandalism, trespass and sabotage means that those responsible for ensuring security must frequently review their existing perimeter security solutions such as fences, gates and barriers. However, before deciding which products are right for any given site, a number of crucial elements must be considered in order to arrive at the best perimeter protection.

    Here are a few aspects of perimeter security you should consider:


    With exposure to changeable weather conditions a daily occurrence, the foundations in which perimeter security elements such as fences, gates and vehicle barriers sit need to be firm to ensure ultimate performance. In locations close to water sources such as estuaries and the coast, specify a specially formulated ‘marine coating' onto galvanised or zinc aluminium coated steel for structural integrity and longevity.

    Also, make sure you design a solution that is away from potential climbing aids, such as overhanging branches, storage bins and vehicle, while the use of natural or artificial landscaping features and road layouts in some locations can affect the level of security required to secure the perimeter.


    There are a number of third party accreditation and ratings that risk and security managers can use as a guide when it comes to specifying security products such as fences, gates and barriers. Accreditation from bodies such as British Standards Institution (BSI), Loss Prevention Certification Board (LPCB) and Secured by Design (SBD) are a good indicator of a secure solution alongside testing and certification to national standards such as LPS 1175 and PAS 68.


    Steel is by far the most common material used to secure perimeters, featuring in many premises where the ultimate aim is to deter and prevent unauthorised access and the look is not as important. To ensure maximum rigidity over the life of the product, elements such as fence posts above and below ground must be at a minimum, hot dip galvanised to BS EN 1461 - inside and out. This process should be ideally carried out once basic manufacturing such as the welding has been done and fixtures are in place. Stainless steel at the appropriate gauge is also ideal. For premises where there is an aesthetic consideration, products manufactured in timber either in isolation or in combination with steel are ideal. Timber perimeter security products must be manufactured from the right part of the right species of timber to ensure rigidity. Additionally, it should be kiln dried sufficiently to accept the optimum volume of chemical treatment against rot and wood boring insects; fixtures and fittings should be manufactured with either galvanised or stainless steel.


    It is vital that tamper evident, single use or integral concealed fixings are used to ensure security is not compromised beyond an initial breach or attempt. This should be supported with a regular inspection schedule that includes a ‘walk around’ the perimeter and checking access points for attempted breaches from within the site and along the attack face. With police and security resources stretched due to budget cuts, it is becoming more important than ever for firms to protect their premises from the incidence of crime. The best perimeter security solutions deter, detect, deny, delay and defend unauthorised access by employing multiple layers of delay and detection to prevent access to protected assets and provide the time and intelligence for an appropriate security response.

    Read our related blog:

    Steps to a successful perimeter

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