Skip to content
Looking back at Security Management in 1985

Flashback to Security Management in 1985

February 1985 | Vol. 29, No. 2


“If one photograph were to characterize international crime during the 1970s and 80s, that photograph would be of a ski-masked figure on the balcony outside the apartment housing Israeli atheletes at the Munich Olympics.” Thus begins Security Management’s February 1985 cover story by FBI executive William Lee Colwell. The 1972 event, when a terrorist group took 11 Israeli Olympians hostage, ended in the deaths of both hostages and terrorists. The article goes on to describe other terrorist events and hostage-takings, and ways that organizations prepare for and respond to them.
Another article on terrorism in the 35-year-old issue describes a theoretical approach to tackling terrorism, by understanding the organizational structure and thinking like a terrorist.

In this April 2020 issue of Security Management, Leland Dean and Matthew Porcelli, CPP, revisit the topic of kidnapping. They describe how the crime has evolved and how to prevent it. One measure is to create a kidnap crisis management team, a recommendation that echoes advice in the 1985 cover article.

Computer Crime Circa 1985

While the Internet as we know it did not exist in the mid-1980s, a 1984 American Bar Association survey found that 48 percent of responding companies had experienced some form of computer crime—theft, embezzlement, fraud, or data destruction—during the previous year. That’s according to “Some Basic Bytes on Keeping Computer Thieves Out of Your System” by Arion N. Pattakos, CPP, published in the February 1985 issue. The article advocates for threat and vulnerability assessments and the implementation of appropriate controls.

Two additional articles advise readers that “Software Thievery Is a Crime” and “How to Choose the Right Computer Software” (finding the right floppy disks). Plus, a small news item reports that computer security managers were earning an average of $43,000 annually, and a guest editorial compares the ASIS CPP© with the IACSS CSSP certification.

In 2020, Security Management includes a monthly “Cybersecurity” department, along with frequent feature articles on cyber topics. This month’s department on page 30 reports on cooperation between government and industry to ensure that software vulnerabilities are addressed.