Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Reader Comment SOCMA Podcasts

An anonymous reader posted a comment to last weeks posting about the 2011 Chemical Sector Security Summit. Anonymous was responding to my suggestion that DHS provide video coverage of presentations at next year’s Summit, writing:

“Though it's far removed from video coverage, SOCMA posts podcasts on its website conducted with key DHS officials during the summit. You may have to register for access (can't recall) but there is no fee to download it.”
Anonymous is correct, SOCMA (who co-funded the 2010 Summit) provided a link to their Summit Podcast in their post-Summit review. The podcast includes comments from some of the presenters and Summit participants. I thought that I had covered this in one of my post-Summit blogs, but I can’t find any mention in my records.

SOCMA was one of the providers of information from the Summit this year and I hope they do the same next. Tweets and blog posts helped those of us who could not attend follow what was going on. Since this is supposed to be another method for DHS to keep the chemical security community updated on the CFATS process and other chemical security programs managed by DHS, I think it is important that the information be shared in as wide a variety of means as possible. SOCMA certainly helped this year, but it is really DHS’s job to make sure that this happens.

Again, I realize that there may be issues in providing video coverage of some of the industry presentations (though I think that most PR departments would look at it as free advertising), but that would not apply to the presentations made by Federal employees. I also understand that there might be concerns about inadvertent disclosure of security sensitive materials, but I’m not asking for live broadcasts. I would be happy if DHS just posted edited videos of the presentations on the Internet after the Summit is over, much the same way that they post the slides used in those presentations.

A major reason for DHS to sponsor this Summit is to ensure that the regulated community gets the information that they need to comply with the CFATS regulations. Since it is not possible for all covered facilities to have security team members attend this Summit, DHS has a responsibility to ensure that the information provided here has the widest possible dissemination. Providing copies of the slide presentations on their web site was a good move, but those slides are only a very minor component of the presentations. We need to hear the words, the voices of the presenters.

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