Module 4.6 – Decide and Implement Measures

SRA Model module 4 decide an implementMost responses to threats may be thought of as either prevention or mitigation measures (or both). Preventive measures are aimed at reducing the likelihood that an event will occur; for example, by declaring an area off limits or seeking to raise image and acceptance among a sensitive population. Mitigating measures seek to reduce the impact of the event; for example, equipping a vehicle with anti-mine ballistic blankets, first aid kits and proper communications equipment probably will not decrease the probability of encountering a mine, but they may lessen its effects. Some measures can both prevent and mitigate; training is an example of this.

Different security response measures can be grouped into several generic categories. It is important to remember that a well-conceived response to security threats will normally require a mix of the alternatives below. In certain cases however, specific choices may be mutually exclusive, as is sometimes the case with specific protection and acceptance measures. In such cases, managers must balance the advantages and disadvantages of each possible measure in the context of their specific situation and the operation as a whole.

  • Planning for security protocols and responses in readiness for response to potential threats.
  • Coordination, both internally among staff and organizational units, and externally with other organizations.
  • Hardening measures such as walls, Razor wire, Sanger positions and strong gates and doors etc.
  • Deterrence measures such as armed guards and police.
  • Image- and acceptance-improving measures such as public outreach campaigns and immediate organizational recognition measures like flags and large decals for buildings and vehicles.
  • Communications equipment and readiness for use by all staff members.
  • Vehicles, their drivers and the associated equipment and procedures for using them.
  • Risk transference strategies, such as insurance policies and hiring others to undertake dangerous tasks.
  • Staff knowledge and skills that guide them in avoiding unnecessary risks and prepare them for emergency response if need be.
  • Reducing exposure by reducing staff in the field, the amount of time that they are in harm’s way, or the areas in which they work and travel.

The criticality assessment process, and the range of preventive and mitigating measures available to a manager, are discussed in module 8 – Risk Reduction Measures.