Original Date: 05/01/2000
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Best Practice : Security Education and Ethics Awareness Committee
Prior to 1995, Northrop Grumman Defensive Systems Division’s (DSD’s) security education and ethics awareness were handled by two independent committees, respectively. Aside from the different subject matters, both committees followed similar lines of action and disseminated information through annual mass briefings. However, this approach generated redundancies in effort and cost. To resolve the situation, Northrop Grumman DSD merged the two groups and created the Security Education and Ethics Awareness Committee (SEEAC). The SEEAC is a formally chartered committee with a precise structure, operating guidelines, and a mission statement: education instead of punishment.
The SEEAC provides, conducts, and sponsors security education and ethics awareness activities so that employees are aware of and comply with corporate, sector, division, government, and customer requirements. The cross- functional committee is composed of employees from various business elements including Security, Engineering, Business Management, and Operations. The integrated team approach enables the SEEAC to reach all employees with the greatest possible impact. The SEEAC uses various publication sources (e.g., Security Awareness Program, Northrop Grumman News, Intranet website) as well as awareness events to communicate information to employees. The annual Security/Ethics Awareness Week features a Security and Ethics Challenge contest that quizzes employees on their security and ethics knowledge in a game-show format. The SEEAC’s efforts lend visibility; demonstrate a serious corporate commitment to security and ethics; and address emerging issues with broad dissemination. Government representatives, as well as Northrop Grumman DSD management, favorably view the SEEAC approach and subsequent benefits.
The success of the SEEAC demonstrates Northrop Grumman DSD’s strong commitment to security education and ethics awareness among personnel. Defense Security Services’ audits have shown an 18% improvement in security discrepancies to a low of 2%. In 1997, Northrop Grumman DSD received the James S. Cogswell Award for Industrial Security Excellence. The SEEAC’s performance and impact were credited as contributing factors to this achievement.
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