Today sees the launch of national Counter Terrorism Awareness Week 2015, a campaign from the police service and partners to inform the public about the terrorism threat; what is being done to tackle it; how communities can help, and offering practical advice about how to stay safe and be vigilant to the threat from terrorism whether at home, in business or online.
Visit the National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO) website today and every day this week for information around how to stay safe and how to be vigilant against the threat from terrorism. Follow @Policechiefs on Twitter where will be using #CounterTerrorismUK.
Following the recent shocking events in Paris, it is important to highlight that the threat level to the UK from international terrorism remains at SEVERE, which means an attack is highly likely. The UK has been operating at this level since August 2014 and it is important that following these events all communities remain alert but not alarmed.
The police and security services are working hard to protect the public and businesses from terrorism and this week gives us an opportunity to remind communities about this threat and help them to take the necessary steps to stay safe. The launch today outlines the current threat and what is being done to tackle it.
On Tuesday the focus will be on terrorist attack planning – both online and off – and explains what to look out for and how the public can get in touch with the police if they have concerns or information about suspicious behaviour or activity.
Wednesday will see the conversation move toward how businesses and industry can be best prepared against the online threat from cyber terrorism.
On Thursday efforts will concentrate on the dangers of online radicalisation and how to safeguard those who are vulnerable.
At the end of the week, in advance of one of the busiest shopping weekends of the year, they will highlight useful information that will explain how to keep popular digital gift items safe from unwanted external influences.
To mark the beginning of Counter Terrorism Awareness Week the police service is reminding the public of how they can help us tackle the current terror threat, while providing information and advice on how to keep safe.
Recent events in Paris remind us all of the threat we face, which in the UK is considered as ‘severe’, meaning an attack is highly likely.
The level of threat is complex and ranges from lone actors intent on carrying out crude and violent attacks to sophisticated networks pursuing ambitious and coordinated plots – as we saw starkly demonstrated in France and other parts of the world.
This increased level of activity is matched by increased action by the police and security services, who are working on hundreds of active investigations and making an arrest a day.
Advice for Business’s via the CPNI
For guidance that can provide you with a starting point for reviewing your own security procedures take a look at http://www.cpni.gov.uk/
Stay Safe Advice: What to do during an attack: RUN, HIDE, TELL
The “Stay Safe” advice issued by the British Government comes after the recent Isil (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) incidents in Paris. It marked an escalation in the scale of Isil attacks and the new advice sets out what people should do in the event of a similar attack.
- Escape if you can
- Consider the safest options
- Is there a safe route? Run, if not hide
- Can you get there without exposing yourself to greater danger?
- Insist others leave with you
- Leave belongings behind
- If you can’t run, hide
- Find cover from gunfire
- If you can see the attacker, they may be able to see you
- Cover from view does not mean you are safe, bullets go through glass, brick, wood and metal
- Find cover from gunfire e.g. substantial brickwork / heavy reinforced walls
- Be aware of your exits
- Try not to get trapped
- Be quiet, silence your phone
- Lock / barricade yourself in
- Move away from the door
- Call 999 – What do the police need to know?
- Location – Where are the suspects?
- Direction – Where did you last see the suspects?
- Descriptions – Describe the attacker, numbers, features, clothing, weapons etc
- Further information – Casualties, type of injury, building information, entrances, exits,hostages etc
- Stop other people entering the building if it is safe to do so
What to do if you notice activity that may be suspicious?
You may feel it’s probably nothing, but unless you trust your instincts and talk to the police, they won’t be able to judge whether the information you have is important or not. Specially trained officers would rather take lots of calls which are made in good faith, but have innocent explanations – rather than not getting any at all, all information passed to the police is treated in the strictest of confidence. It is thoroughly analysed and researched by experienced officers before, and if, any police action is taken. Remember, no piece of information is considered too small or insignificant.
It’s probably nothing but….if you see or hear anything that could be terrorist-related trust your instincts and call the Anti-Terrorist Hotline on 0800 789 321. In an emergency, always dial 999.