Community Resiliance, Personal Safety, Personal Security

Security Risk Management, Terrorism, the Civilian Populace and Resilience

Security Risk Management, Terrorism, the Civilian Populace and Resilience

As a risk management consultant every morning I wake up and check the morning news while I drink my morning coffee as I am sure most of us do, I can only speak for myself but the news has become one bad news story after another. I will not focus on all the stories but I will talk about the growing threat of Terrorism against us. It is on the rise in mainland Europe and now even Germany has announced that they believe that ISIS cells have infiltrated their nation. We can see from the recent events in France and Belgium the devastating effect they (ISIS) can inflict on a nation. Not just in the act of terrorism itself, but how it affects the people exposed to it, their family members, the community and national psyche.

So as a Security Risk Management Consultant I see this and I start to think how can we stop or lower the risk of this happening on the home-front, or if it does can we start to build some resilience into our community’s so that we can potentially react and recover faster, and lower the loss of life and disruption.

Our mindset has to change and evolve with the times!

I am sure we have all heard stories from our grandparents about back in the day, telling us things like; when I was your age you didn’t even have to lock your doors at night. Or how children could play in the street and there was little to no danger of anything happening to them, was this due to there being no danger? I doubt that, but communities use to look after each other and interact more; so, everyone was looking after everyone.

So here we are, we have accepted that we need to lock our doors. I would say most of us have more than one lock and we keep real close eyes on our children. Our cars and modes of transport have alarms and locks and stronger roll bars and systems in place than ever before. We accept and expect this.

Understanding the threat

When it comes to a potential terrorist attack on our home front, which let’s face it; is a likely eventuality; what’s our thought process?

  • It will never happen to me.
  • Its scare mongering.
  • The government, intelligence services, and police are taking care of that – They are looking after us.
  • If it happens someone will be able to help me.

With this as a mindset we continue in our daily lives, and do nothing to prepare for the “what if”.

This is very dangerous as it’s a reactive mindset and the problem with it is, that once this once in a lifetime event has happened it’s too late to do anything about it. It’s the same as fitting an alarm or an extra lock after you have already been burgled the event has happened and you have lost something of value to you.

Will questions be asked – like did anyone see anything? Did anyone notice anything out of the ordinary? Someone must know the person or people that committed this crime against me? The answer to most of these questions is more than likely “yes”, but it was not their business or they didn’t want to get involved. But I have to ask the question what if they did (get involved)? Would it make us as a community and nation less vulnerable?

The UK current threat level which is set by M15, the people we trust to know and look after us within the British intelligence services; who are experts and 2nd to none; have set our threat  level to SEVERE so what does that tell us? It means it’s not a question of if there will be a terrorist attack on the UK, but more of when.

IRA Brighton BombingThis reminds me of a famous statement made by the IRA back in 1984 after the Brighton bombings when they tried to kill our PM at the time, Margaret Thatcher…

Today we were unlucky, but remember we only have to be lucky once. You will have to be lucky always!

It is my understand and belief, that everyone has the right to self-defence the protection of themselves their family and the community. It’s written into our laws and it’s a basic human right. Therefore we need to start to train our populace to be able to detect these possible threats; no matter whether these threats are from criminal or terrorist organisations.

People need to be more active and willing to act; to be the eyes and ears of the security services. If people were more willing to do this, this would be a big deterrent to any would-be criminals or terrorists; as all eyes would be on them – not  just those of the government and intelligence services. If we can achieve this and work together the chances of a successful attack against us will be lower.  Working together, we would be detecting threats sooner. That will deter criminals and terrorists, potentially delaying their activities long enough for the intelligence and police to stop them. In effect denying them the opportunity to stage a successful terrorist operation against us.

Your Security and that of your community is everybody’s responsibility. 
You could be the difference!

Till the next time ~ Stay Safe!

Damien Heim




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