2017 has seen countless attacks on the general public around the globe, with attackers selecting locations considered "soft targets" as an easy option to cause maximum impact, not only by the physical damage generated, but also in terms of the media coverage, particularly across social media platforms. The personal stories from those present when an incident occurs, and the accompanying images and videos from such attacks spread like wild fire across social media, and instills real fear amongst the public. The incitement of fear is a core aim of such terror groups and at present, this trend shows no sign of stopping.
The atrocities in the UK over recent weeks show that soft-target attacks have become a strategic mainstay for ISIS-inspired terrorists. These have followed a growing list of other attacks targeting mainland Europe, employing mobile attackers armed with firearms or knives, or turning a vehicle into a weapon.
Today I delivered a case study at our Hotel Security Briefing, held at the Movenpick Hotel on JLT. During the case study I tried to outline how a typical Active Shooter Scenario might unfold, by placing myself in the shoes of the perpetrator.
We might assume that an attack targeting individuals within a hotel is carried out at random, with no identified plan of attack, but if we go back a step, we begin to unravel the full scope of the incident and what preventative actions can be taken by the hotel to deter the attacker, and equally as important, what can be done when an attack occurs to minimise the damage inflicted.
Sadly, the world continues to be a dangerous place, with terrorist attacks on the increase, particularly in the MENA region. Hotels have seemingly been identified as a "soft target", as by their very nature, they must be welcoming and friendly establishments as opposed to fortresses. Following the global incidents witnessed in 2016, we outline below the top 5 threats currently impacting security planning and strategy in the hotel sector.
Travelers, whether their trip is undertaken for business or pleasure, demand safe and secure hotel accommodation. How can hoteliers ensure that their property provides as secure an environment as possible?
Hotel security and safety involves protecting not only your guests, but also employees and the physical assets of the property from emergency situations such as criminal activities, natural disasters and terrorism. As Warren Buffet once said: “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”