STANDARD 16: Security Measures

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STANDARD 16: Effective security measures [design, controls and policies] must provide the appropriate level of security for objects

[Placeholder intro] For even the most robust and stable objects, the possibility of theft remains a serious threat. The disappearance of an object is the ultimate failure in terms of object care. A stolen object is usually lost permanently; and even those that are recovered may have suffered damage from exposure to rough handling or harmful conditions. Failure to provide adequate security can thus result in the loss of a museum’s collections, damage to the institution’s reputation, and, in the case of loaned objects, legal difficulties. Providing appropriate security is therefore a primary concern for exhibits.

The Conservation Requirements for a particular exhibit will help to establish the risk of theft, vandalism, and incidental touching for that exhibit and will indicate the level of security that should be provided. A security risk assessment will help to identify security deficiencies within the exhibit space. Primary security strategies include security staffing and controlled access to the exhibit space; the use of alarms and monitoring devices; and exhibit design, specifically the use of enclosures, which are particularly important for institutions where extra staffing is impractical.

In general, security for an exhibit should be provided through the combination of a human presence, a monitored security system, and well-designed cases.

[The following subject headings and information are placeholders.]

Guideline 16.1: Museum policies and procedures promote object security

What institutional practices promote security?
When should extra personnel be hired to provide security?

Guideline 16.2: The appropriate security hardware is utilized

When should security hardware be utilized?
What different types of security hardware are available?
What types of electronic monitoring devices are available?

Guideline 16.3: Design strategies are used to enhance security

What are the security advantages of a well designed exhibit case?
When must a case be utilized for security reasons?
What design strategies can aid security?
What architectural modifications can aid security?