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Responding to a Heightened Global Threat part 2

6th August 2015

Sungard Availability Services recently collaborated with TerraVenta – which specialises in providing training and support services for government agencies and companies – to share some of their knowledge at a well-received customer event.  Which we are now bringing with our readers.

Following on from Monday’s blog post – in which we revealed insights in recognition of the UK’s increased risk following the recent terror attacks in Tunisia, Paris and Copenhagen – we’re pleased to reveal hints and tips that could make a difference should you ever be caught up in any of the following…

Marauding gunmen/terrorist attacks

  • Don’t wear company ID out in the street as it makes you a target for someone wanting to gain access to the premises or with a grudge against the business.
  • Vary the time, day or place of regular meetings (In this year’s Paris shootings the gunmen knew Charlie Hebdo magazine always held its editorial meeting on the same day in the same office at the same time).
  • If someone points a gun at you run away at a 45 degree angle to their left as this limits their angle of fire forcing them to turn, which could give you valuable seconds.
  • Don’t run in a straight line but zigzag as it is harder to hit a moving target.
  • Keep away from walls to minimise the risk of being hit by a riccochet shot.
  • Keep running and always look for the emergency exit sign – don’t hesitate to use that door, even if it is in a restricted area.

“Don’t wear company ID out in the street as it makes you a target for someone wanting to gain access to the premises or with a grudge against the business.”

— Terraventa

Air travel

Be aware that the risk has shifted from airside to landside. In the 1970s repeated hijackings by Palestinian terror groups meant airline passengers were at greatest risk once airborne. Today, improved security measures mean passengers are in most danger before they have cleared security so move through the process as quickly as possible.

This means:

  • Removing belts, shoes and jackets before you reach security to reduce delay.
  • Go around the corner to put your clothes back on – if a bomb is detonated in the security queue you will outside the direct line of the blast, reducing your risk of shrapnel injury.
  • While waiting for your flight to be called avoid the main concourse as the opportunity to cause mass casualties makes it the biggest, most attractive target for an attacker.

Road traffic accidents

Statistics show although our initial instinct is to escape, it is actually safer to remain in your car after an accident due to the likelihood of being disoriented. Studies show 20% are hit by oncoming traffic because they are dazed, resulting in death or injury. Conversely, less than 5% of people involved in accidents die in a fire in their car so in most cases it is safer to wait for a few minutes and work out what to do rather than react instantly.

TerraVenta believes physical security can only go so far: people need to know what to do to detect potential threats or if caught up in an attack, whether in the office, commuting, travelling further afield, on the street as a bystander or even at home.

This extract is taken from an article which first appeared in our customer newsletter AVAIL, from which you can access more news, views and details of our forthcoming events.