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Speaker Interview: NEXCOR LLC

Speaker Interview: NEXCOR LLC

You will be speaking at the Crowded Places conference at SCTX 2019. Can you give us a brief insight into the areas you will be covering in your address?

My presentation will cover the use of “scripting” as a potential data-creation tool in establishing patterns that can be analyzed to possibly better prepare for lone wolf type attacks. From this process, which many local US law enforcement agencies use effectively in crime control, data can be processed through a proposed structured intelligence system, actually a system of systems, by which, with today’s advances in artificial intelligence, may be able to better prepare for the defense of such lone wolf type attacks, specifically in larger, crowded spaces.

The conference theme is ‘Delivering effective protective security to accessible public spaces’. What do you believe are the major challenges in providing effective security to accessible public spaces?

In my opinion the primary challenge is to provide security without negatively impacting the form and function of the space, it’s occupants/patrons/customers, and the general environment. The security needs to be “in the background” as much as possible and not overt. Yes, of course there is an element of deterrence with overt show of force of security, and there is also a valid perception of safety and actual safety for those within the environment, but in many cases it can become “too much” and start affecting those who are legitimately within this environment. Thus, technology is a tremendous factor in putting all this “behind the scenes”. Recent advances in technology have enabled law enforcement agencies to excel in both targeted and comprehensive approaches to such situations. However the human side of the equation is equally important. An example of a great balanced approach (between technology and human factors) can be seen at Ben Gurion Airport in Israel, a crowded place that has established an optimal balance in terms of safety and security, with “personal freedom” of its users.

How do you think the threat landscape has evolved in recent years and in what ways, if any, do you expect it to change in the near future?

I would say that there has been an increase in complexity with a decrease in intensity. The threat has increased in complexity because terrorism has purposely fragmented into smaller and smaller, more independent action. In my opinion, the kind of planned and highly coordinated event we saw with 9/11 (intensity) will most likely not occur again based on efforts of law enforcement. Instead we see more and more individuals take these actions. In my opinion these border almost on the edge of spontaneity which makes things more complicated for law enforcement, but at the same time the inherent magnitude of the threat is less with such events. So there is a trade off . In the near future, the troubling thing can be when those groups attempt to increase the magnitude impact of these lone wolf type attacks while still maintaining them at the lower, tactical level. For example, say a dirty bomb type attack by an individual. When groups learn how to separate the logistics of preparation, with the actual tactical execution, then things will become much more difficult in terms of identifying and preparing a defense. I believe that the scripting system of systems approach presented may provide some defense in such situations because of its integration properties.

With regards to your own address, what more can soft target and crowded places stakeholders do to better secure their sites and facilities with the current threat landscape in mind?

The key concept is intelligence which is the central theme of my presentation. Gathering, analyzing, as well as establishing such “scripting” scenarios and scenario planning within today’s technological capabilities coupled with strong human interface points, I feel provides the optimal approach. This is because there is a proactive factor in such an approach. Yes of course we can establish safety and security perimeters, guarding, and various other physical and human barriers, but for the most part these fall under the “passive” category. The approach we outline is more “proaction” rather than reaction. Thus, what can be done further......establish a comprehensive back-end system of systems that handles data (appropriately together with human interaction) and provides for a customizable approach to such venues in terms of safety and security prevention, especially for those potential lone wolf type attacks that are, in my opinion, growing and more complex to handle.

What can delegates expect to take away from your session?

My presentation is essentially geared towards providing a way for those responsible for such venues to think about and approach the way these crowded places type venues can be guarded especially against lone wolf type attacks with a strong measure of preemption. I believe that once such attacks begin, even if the impact is minimal, there remains a serious problem that safety and security may be suboptimal. Our approach is a preventive type approach that takes it a step back. Of course there are many details that need to be worked out but the concept can be a way for individuals in leadership positions to begin thinking of a more optimal way for safeguarding such venues.  

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