At the usual Monday management board meeting this morning we heard an interesting and rich presentation on the work of our small administrative team responsible for the safety and security of both the European Economic and Social Committee and, because it is a joint service, the Committee of the Regions. Like IT, security is a classic ‘behind the scenes’ service on which we rely fundamentally but which, if uninformed, we risk seeing only as occasionally irksome. As officials or members, we want our PCs to work fast and we want good web access, but we are less enthusiastic when, for example, it comes to changing passwords regularly (though this is of course an indispensable part of modern-day IT security policy). Similarly, our colleagues working in security and safety provide us with the safe and comfortable working environment we require (covering everything from checking that fire extinguishers and alarms work properly through to looking after lost property), but we like it less when, for example, we are obliged to quit our buildings for evacuation exercises or show our security passes. So the presentation today was primarily about information and we were duly appreciative, for our security and safety service is about far, far more than checking people’s passes at the front door.