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  1. the condition of not being threatened, especially physically, psychologically, emotionally, or financially
  2. something that secures.
  3. an organization or department responsible for providing security by enforcing laws, rules, and regulations as well as maintaining order.

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Security is freedom from, or resilience against, potential harm (or other unwanted coercive change) caused by others. Beneficiaries (technically referents) of security may be of persons and social groups, objects and institutions, ecosystems or any other entity or phenomenon vulnerable to unwanted change by its environment. [[File:20151030 Syrians and Iraq refugees arrive at Skala Sykamias Lesvos Greece 2.jpg|thumb|Refugees fleeing war and insecurity in Iraq and Syria arrive at Lesbos Island, supported by Spanish volunteers, 2015]] Security mostly refers to protection from hostile forces, but it has a wide range of other senses: for example, as the absence of harm (e.g. freedom from want); as the presence of an essential good (e.g. food security); as resilience against potential damage or harm (e.g. secure foundations); as secrecy (e.g. a secure telephone line); as containment (e.g. a secure room or cell); and as a state of mind (e.g. emotional security).

The term is also used to refer to acts and systems whose purpose may be to provide security (e.g. security forces; security guard; cyber security systems; security cameras; remote guarding).

Security concepts (examples)

Certain concepts recur throughout different fields of security:

  • Access control - the selective restriction of access to a place or other resource.
  • Assurance - an expression of confidence that a security measure will perform as expected.
  • Authorization - the function of specifying access rights/privileges to resources related to information security and computer security in general and to access control in particular.
  • Countermeasure - a means of preventing an act or system from having its intended effect.
  • Defense in depth - a school of thought holding that a wider range of security measures will enhance security.
  • Exploit (noun) - a means of capitalizing on a vulnerability in a security system (usually a cyber-security system).
  • Identity management - enables the right individuals to access the right resources at the right times and for the right reasons.
  • Resilience - the degree to which a person, community, nation or system is able to resist adverse external forces.
  • Risk - a possible event which could lead to damage, harm, or loss.
  • Security management - identification of an organization's assets (including people, buildings, machines, systems and information assets), followed by the development, documentation, and implementation of policies and procedures for protecting these assets.
  • Threat - a potential source of harm.
  • Vulnerability - the degree to which something may be changed (usually in an unwanted manner) by external forces.

See also

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Security" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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