Royal Malaysian Police Special Branch’s Counter-Terrorism Disvision assistant director Datuk Ayob Khan’s recent statement with regards to the infiltration of terrorist elements within the security industry is no surprise for many of us in the security profession and it is highly foreseeable as over the last few years, several preceding incidences in the country have exposed the vulnerability of the Malaysian security profession and industry weakness in general.

Photo courtesy of The Malay Mail Online

Besides poor background checks and lack of vetting compliance, elements of rampant corruption also needs to be addressed particularly on the appointment of security contractors as a root cause.

One must wonder why companies, including public listed companies are still willing to engage unscrupulous security companies to supply them with security guarding services.

With the high number of illegal guards employed by these security guarding companies, the vast majority of them do not go through proper vetting procedures.

It has become common knowledge and an ‘unwritten rule’ within the industry that under-table money are offerred to certain individuals with decision making positions in order to secure guarding contracts and usually monthly ‘allowances’ or kickbacks are offerred to security managers of the prospective clients in order to ‘take care’ of their assignments, including efforts to ensure that they do not pressure them for work permits and other necessary documents.

Payments between security companies to these security guards to under-table money and monthly ‘allowances’ to irresponsible security managers are typically done in cash in order to avoid detection.

The guards, on the other hand, are paid in cash because the majority of them, especially if they are illegal foreign workers do not qualify to open Malaysian bank accounts.

It is high time that the authorities, especially the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission steps in to investigate and tackle this issue as the concern over compromise in national security matters is a valid point of concern should terrorist elements capitalize on these vulnerabilities.