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Conflict in the Middle East – what does it mean for UK business?

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Over the past ten days, the conflict between Israel and Hamas has continued to intensify. From a UK policing perspective, we are seeing the impact of this conflict through a number of high profile protests in UK cities and a marked increase in hate crime reporting.

On Tuesday October 17th Director General of MI5 Ken McCallum commented that events in the Middle East have, in the past, had repercussions in the way the terrorist threat manifests itself in Europe and other western countries.

He added that the UK terrorism threat level is kept under regular independent review by the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre (JTAC), and that the events we are seeing unfold will be factored into these considerations.

The UK terrorism threat level remains at SUBSTANTIAL, meaning an attack is likely.

We all have a role to play in keeping the UK safe. Attacks can happen in any place and at any time. ProtectUK can support with guidance and awareness tools, to make sure you and your staff are able to protect against the threat of terror attacks and be prepared to respond.

Some important steps to take now include:

1.       Make sure you and your staff have completed the free ACT e-learning. This is a great point to start your counter terrorism awareness journey.

2.       Consider the advice and guidance in The Blue Book. This is a guide to personal security at home, online, at work and when overseas.

3.       The National Protective Security Authority encourage organisations to consider the importance of effective communications to the workforce (a key aspect in the NPSA Insider Risk Mitigation Framework). Messaging from leaders or managers is recommended to signpost to support networks, reinforce how to report concerning behaviour, and remind staff of organisational policies (for example participation in protests and the use of social media to comment on the current political situation).

Should you or your staff be concerned about suspicious activity, people or potential hate crime it is really important that you report the details to your local police force.

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