The best security reads of 2018

Here we are on the precipice of a new year. If you’re like us, you found it tough to keep abreast of 2018’s relentless stream of breaking news. Making time for deep reads may have been nearly impossible. No worries. Our editorial team has put together a list of their favorite security-related reads of the year. Take a few minutes to dive into at least one of these stories and you’ll start 2019 better prepared.

What are active shooter drills doing to kids?, The Atlantic

Active shooter drills have been part of school safety protocols for years and widely accepted as critical for keeping kids safe when the unthinkable happens. But this article asks if prompting little kids to imagine a gunman is coming to kill them might have psychological ramifications. Related, this video on Mother Jones shows kids reenacting drills and talking about how drills make them feel.


New in school: A.I.-driven gun detection systems, UnDark

Several companies, including the sponsor of this blog, PatriotOne, are attempting to use artificial intelligence in weapons scanners to stop bad actors from smuggling guns into schools. This story outlines what they promise and how they work.


A scrappy California crime lab is cracking more cases thanks to a technology bigger agencies misuse, The Trace

The National Integrated Ballistic Information Network, run by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives is like a giant fingerprint database, but for guns. But it only works if police officers log all the bullet casings they recover quickly. In most cases, police don’t get forensic evidence back until after their cases are closed. In Contra Costa, a new no-nonsense boss is changing that.


U.S. Law Enforcement failed to see white nationalism. Now they don’t know how to stop it., The New York Times

This year, far-right extremists were behind the mass shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue and attempting mail bombings of CNN and high-profile Democrats. This story by Janet Reitman outlines how fringe right radicalism has flourished in the shadows for 20 years as domestic counterterrorism agents instead focused on jihadi-style threats.


I made a 3D printed gun in my office, Wired

There are plenty of reasons to dismiss 3D printed guns as a distraction: they’re unreliable, incapable of firing more than a few rounds, and costly to make. Plus, they include enough metal to set of weapons scanners. But this chilling video by Wired shows just how it’s done, and as 3D printing technology becomes cheaper and more sophisticated these home-made guns could present a bigger threat.


Rogue drones a growing nuisance in the U.S., Washington Post

In the buzzkill department, this story outlines all the ways drones are disturbing the peace. Consumers love them and public security officials are integrating them into their work. But they also smash into buildings, fly into pedestrians, and in at least one case, smuggle drugs into prison. Don’t worry though, the Dutch are on it. They’re training eagles to take down rogue drones.


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