Yesterday the Palace of Westminster fell under an attack that left four dead, including a police officer, and several injured. In response to the attack on Parliament, STV reached out to SecuriGroup's Operations Director Allan Burnett QPM, the former Assistant Chief Constable in charge of co-ordinating Counter-Terrorism in Scotland.
Allan was joined by Mr Charles Bird, a former UK government diplomat specialising in terrorism and counter-terrorism. Both industry professionals were interviewed by Rona Dougall on the rising threat of terrorism in the UK, and how UK police services and security experts are combatting terrorism.
The threat of a terrorist attack in the UK currently sits at SEVERE, according to the official Threat Level established by the UK Government. Mr Burnett claimed he was not surprised at yesterday's attack, commenting that "the threat level has been at SEVERE for a considerable amount of time and that means an attack is highly likely."
The threat level was upgraded from SUBSTANTIAL in August of 2014, and since then security professionals have been ever vigilant of an attack. Mr Burnett also heralded the efficient job our counter-terrorism professionals have done, managing to prevent 13 attacks since 2013.
The attack on Parliament is now one of many similar incidents that have spread across Europe in recent months, and the tragedy at Westminster Bridge and inside the grounds of Parliament is the attack that security chiefs in the UK have long been preparing for. It is due to this preparation that the situation was diffused quickly, supported by the efficient emergency services in central London.
Due to the increased interest on terrorism, SecuriGroup hosted a counter-terrorism seminar at the Southbank Centre on the 1st of March. In conjunction with LUPC (the London University Purchasing Consortium) Mr Burnett and SecuriGroup Chair Baroness Ruth Henig CBE discussed the PREVENT strategy currently in place for safeguarding people and communities from the threat of terrorism.
Terrorism looks not just to kill and maim, but to create panic and such a sense of disorder so that the general public live in a constant state of fear. SecuriGroup looks to educate our clients and the societies in which we live, by offering our services and industry best practice advice to continue fighting the growing terror threat and the fear surrounding it.
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