Site access and site security

by John Watkins, Senior Security Operations Manager

At MBNL, we appreciate that site access and site security are of foremost importance to our site provider community; and our Operational Security Team have been working tirelessly to raise our standards and performance in this key area over the last couple of years.  MBNL’s Senior Security Operations Manager John Watkins shares how the team have been working to deliver on that mission.

The Operational Security Team work closely with many other teams within MBNL, such as the Health and Safety Team, to make our sites safer and more secure.  The improvement journey is very rewarding, as our efforts help to secure the sites, protect the assets, provide our site providers the assurances they need, and most importantly deliver a resilient network to provide vital mobile connectivity to EE and Three’s customers across the UK.

As part of this journey, at the end of 2020 we introduced the MBNL MyLocken system.  MBNL MyLocken utilises mechatronic locks to provide rigorous site access management, allowing us to record and monitor real-time activity as engineers and contractors attend sites.  One year on, we are confident site activities are being securely logged across the MBNL estate; from engineers visits to maintain the network equipment, through to activities required to upgrade the equipment, enabling MBNL to provide EE and Three with best-in-class mobile connectivity round the clock to serve their customers.  The continued rollout of the MyLocken locks also gives us important data on some significant areas relating to site visits such as visit pattern and trend, and contractor behaviour, which will provide us with useful insight for improving both our ways of working and the experience of our site providers.

Another milestone achievement of our journey is the establishment of the MBNL Physical Security Operations Centre (PSOC) in January.  The PSOC keeps an eagle eye on the MBNL estate via both the MyLocken system and also CCTV systems and has been very effective in helping to prevent attacks and incidents on our CCTV-monitored sites.  We have been extending the deployment of CCTV systems across our estate to better monitor and secure vulnerable sites against theft, vandalism, and unauthorised activity, supplemented with the use of asset marking solutions such as SmartWater Spray.  Our ability to install CCTV is only possible due to the continued support of our site providers in approving installation on their sites.  The support we have received so far is really encouraging and greatly appreciated.

As we progress into 2022, we will continue to install more MyLocken locks and CCTV systems where necessary to ensure the continued improvement of site access and security to safeguard and benefit all involved in our sites – whether site providers or our operatives.