2015 issue [current-page:url:args:value:2]

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Obama to require background checks on gun sales

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CFB Halifax security leaks spur call for probe

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Screening at Regina courts regularly locates weapons

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European capitals step up New Year's eve security

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U.S. parts keeping Canada's SAR choppers airborne

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Canadians Internet traffic at risk

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Drone crashes into Ontario vehicle

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Killing of black people by U.S. police drew spotlight

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Most Canadians support ISIL air strikes

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Federal government considering new IT security

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Coalition kills ISIS leader connected to Paris attack

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Top public safety apps for emergency workers

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U.S. steps up checks for airline/airport employees

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Chief's comments about racism fuel tension

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Pilot project aims to help Ottawa's smallest patients

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Tokyo police using flying net to capture illict UAVs

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No one reason drives a person to terrorism

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Canadians with pot convictions call for pardons

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NB police commission to probe handling of murder

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Ottawa paintballer spied on ISIL network

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Statistics overstate threat of Ottawa violence

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Prison agency amends solitary confinement policy

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Contactless cards spark security fears

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Human behaviour biggest threat to security

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Withdrawal of decon vehicles 'risks security'

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Supreme Court upholds sentence for drunk driving

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Montreal teen guilty of attempting to help ISIL

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B.C. Auditor General faults computer security

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U.S. debate: National security in spotlight

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U.S. may review immigrant's social media

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CATSA lists airport security no-nos

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'Islamic military alliance' to fight terrorism

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Ontario now a major hub for sex trafficking

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Union alleges coast guard vessels are unsafe

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Scots teaching the U.S about gun-free policing

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Canadian businesses to monitor cyber threats

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Canadian security level not raised despite reports

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Winnipeg police buy new armoured vehicle

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Defence Minister mum on Afghan security funding

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RCMP boss wants to rid force of racists

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ISIL cyberattack on airplane unlikely

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C4i and CDEMA partner on disaster management

© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol #, No #)

C4i Consultants have signed a memorandum of understanding with the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) to support the "One Million Lives" project.

In collaboration with C4i, CDEMA is embarking on a multi-phase project to create a world-class emergency disaster management training facility with remotely deployable classrooms. C4i’s Emergency and Disaster Management Simulation (EDMSIM) software will be used to equip trainees with realistic tabletop exercises.

The facility and training resources intend to have a positive impact in the area of comprehensive disaster management (CDM), with specific measurables in capacity building, multi-agency collaboration and integration, and training the CDM leaders of the future.

At the conclusion of the one-year project, there will be ongoing activities and support to ensure the benefits create lasting and sustainable programming for CDEMA, its member states, key stakeholders and partners. The goal of the project is for one million lives to be saved as a result of proactive emergency training.

 


Denean Tomlin, Project Manager, C4i Consultants, shakes hands with Ronald Jackson, Executive Director, Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) at the CDM Annual conference in Nassau, Bahamas.

 

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Canadians unsure about ISIS bombing

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Heartbleed bug more serious than disclosed

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Warships conclude successful deployment in Pacific

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Her Majesty's Canadian Ships (HMC Ships) Brandon and Whitehorse recently concluded their participation in Operation CARIBBE 2015 with a substantial contribution to the multinational campaign against illicit trafficking in the eastern Pacific Ocean.

Since leaving their home port of Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt on October 23, the Royal Canadian Navy ships assisted the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) in the seizure and disruption of approximately 9,800 kg of cocaine in international waters of the Eastern Pacific Ocean off the coast of Central and South America.  Cases involved intercepting suspected smuggling vessels and locating floating bales of contraband at sea.

“The collaborative effort between both ships and the United States Coast Guard ensures the continued success of these types of operations in the region," said Lieutenant-Commander Landon Creasy, Commanding Officer, HMCS Brandon. "I could not be more proud of the professionalism, communication and skillset of all the members involved in these disruptions.”

The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) have conducted Operation CARIBBE since November 2006 and remain committed to working with Western Hemisphere and European partners to address security challenges in the region and successfully disrupt illicit trafficking operations.

Since deploying in late October, each ship, with 38 crew aboard, has patrolled waters in joint operations involving ships from the USCG and various maritime patrol aircraft. The crews accomplished a total of seven disruptions during the deployment, resulting in approximately 9,800 kg of cocaine being seized or disrupted.

HMC Ships Brandon and Whitehorse, each with a U.S. Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment aboard, worked jointly on four of the seven cases. HMCS Brandon is credited with two additional interdictions, and HMCS Whitehorse with one, during the deployment.

“I am tremendously proud of the dedication and hard work displayed by everyone involved in this operation," Lieutenant-Commander Shane Denneny, Commanding Officer, HMCS Whitehorse. "This demonstrates the strength in teamwork and working as a cohesive unit to suppress criminal activity in the region.”

Counter-smuggling operations involved coordinated patrols and interdictions involving U.S. military and law enforcement agencies as well as partner nations in the region. Additional details on individual interdictions are not available at this time due to ongoing investigations, law enforcement activity, or legal proceedings.

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Ottawa cops are tops: Statscan survey

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Liberals to give RCMP collective bargaining rights

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Wrong-number calls lead to drug bust

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Quebec to create its own gun registry

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British Army called in after severe storm flooding

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Obama urges gun control, not divisiveness

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FBI investigating U.S shooting as possible terrorism

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Companies fined for illegal armoured car exports

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Alberta police battle against Fentanyl cuts

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RCMP to emphasize intelligence sharing

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Feds reject airline's access to threat assessments

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Canadian startup invents better breathalyzer

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Chicago mayor fires police chief

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NATO to ask Canada to fund Afghan security forces

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Whitehorse police tackle organized crime

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CAF soldier apologizes for upset at girl named "Isis"

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Prime minister's plane at risk?

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Sharia4Belgium plans democratic overthrow

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Protect indigenous women from serial killers: minister

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Goodale avoids questions about online police powers

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Turkey won't apologize for downing Russian warplane

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RCMP looking for 'suspicious' men at Rogers Centre

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Law crimps cyber crime fight: Paulson

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Security a top priority in refugee plan: Goodale

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Military bases on standby for refugee arrivals

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It's now 10,000 refugees by year end: Trudeau

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Russia adds remotely piloted aircraft to Arctic force

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Minister praises quick response to bomb threats

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ICAO to discuss airport security

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U.S. issues worldwide travel warning for Americans

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NATO response to Paris not binding on Canada

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CFB Kingston readies for Syrian refugees

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Toronto temple is a 'cash cow' for terrorists

© 2015 FrontLine Defence (Vol #, No #)

According to a “Secret” Canada Border Services Agency report filed in Federal Court, the Kandasamy temple, in east-end Toronto, is controlled by the World Tamil Movement, which is on the Canadian government’s list of terrorist organizations.

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Emergency Preparedness

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2015 UK Strategic Defence and Security Review and beyond

2015

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UK: Strategic Defence and Security Review 2010

2015

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Climate Change Economics: Tourism and Natural Hazards Management

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Fire Safety on Buses
On behalf of Swedish Transport Agency
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2015 Data Breach Investigations Report
By Verizon
2015

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Minister Sajjan welcomes leaders to Security Forum

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Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan yesterday launched the annual Halifax International Security Forum by underscoring the timely importance of bringing together key defence leaders to discuss a number of pressing global security issues.

“I am pleased to welcome defence leaders from around the world to Canada for this year’s Halifax International Security Forum," the minister said. "In this era of increased and continuous interconnectivity, we must continue to work closely together at all levels, to share ideas, information, and our visions of a peaceful and secure world, and I look forward to the valuable opportunity to do so this weekend.” 

The Forum, which provides opportunities for Canadian stakeholders to engage global leaders and partners on current defence and security challenges, connects more than 300 defence leaders from around the world including Canadian and international figures from government, military, academia, media, as well as the private sector. Over the three days, discussions will cover a wide range of scheduled topics, including the security situation in Central and Eastern Europe, the ongoing instability in the Middle East, terrorism, and the security implications of energy and natural resource shortages, among many others.

Participants include senior officials such as international Ministers of Defence, members of the U.S. Congress, and other elected and military officials from allied and partner nations. As such, the Forum provides an excellent setting for the Minister of National Defence to host bilateral meetings with his counterparts from across the globe.

The Forum is available live at http://halifaxtheforum.org and runs until Sunday, November 22, 2015.

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Sudbury police increase event security

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Paris attacks to dominate Halifax Forum

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Paris attacks heighten security fears for Rio Olympics

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Supreme Court upholds military justice system

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ISIS working on chemical attack, officials say

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Cyberattacks on infrastructure a 'major threat'

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Experts says Canada can vet refugees quickly

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Terror travellers getting harder to spot: RCMP report

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Calgary man added to Interpol wanted list

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Peel police shoot man over suspected explosives

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BC Hydro wins Airbus “Innovation in Safety” Award

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BC Hydro has been awarded the 2015 Airbus Helicopters Canada “Innovation in Safety” Award for their dedicated and collaborative approach to ensuring many years of safe operations.

This award is presented to a nominee or organization whose business initiatives have demonstrated a great impact on the overall goal of safe flying operations, including skill development, training and committing additional resources to safety programs. The winner, determined by an award selection committee, receives a $10,000 prize.  

“Safety will always be our number one priority.  We ensure this by honouring innovative safety practices which exemplify what the future of our industry should be,” said Romain Trapp, President and CEO, Airbus Helicopters Canada.  “We applaud BC Hydro’s dedication to safe flying practices. These practices drive the industry forward in the field of safety and we are proud to recognize BC Hydro’s efforts through the presentation of this award.”

Supplying over 95% of the power to the province, BC Hydro’s mandate is to generate, purchase, distribute, sell and deliver power to meet BC’s electricity needs; the helicopter is a critical tool to support these efforts.

“We are honoured to receive this award and to be recognized for this work in making our use of helicopters as safe as possible for our employees, contractors and the public.” Said Greg Reimer, EVP of Transmission, Distribution and Customer Service at BC Hydro. “Safety is a core value in our business and I’d like to thank Airbus Helicopters Canada and all of our partners in aviation for supporting our efforts in helicopter safety.”

BC Hydro has earned a reputation across North America as having one of the highest standards for safety in rotary wing operations by implementing key mandates for safety.  Key safety initiatives they have implemented include:

  • Mandates the use of state of the art twin-engine aircraft with sufficient OEI capability to maintain flight on one engine.
  • Performs pre-flight risk assessments on each and every trip its employees are involved in from routine powerline patrols to complex maintenance and repair activities.

In November 2015, BC Hydro participated in Airbus Helicopters’ Canada’s 2nd International Powerline Symposium in Vancouver where they shared their approach to safety with a wide variety of organizations involved in hydro operations.

The helicopter industry committee includes: Robert Erdos, Chief Experimental Test Pilot, National Research Council of Canada; Fred Jones, President and CEO, Helicopter Association of Canada; Matt Nicholls, Editor, Helicopters Magazine and Wings Magazine; and Mike Reyno, Photojournalist and Group Publisher, MHM Publishing.

Mr. Greg Reimer (left), Executive Vice-President, Transmission, Distribution & Customer Service, B.C. Hydro Mr. Treg Manning, Vice-President Sales and Marketing, Airbus Helicopters North America. Photo: Dave Hiebert

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Canadian security landscape differs

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Refugee security screening 'paramount': Philpott

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Trudeau on refugees: security is top priority

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France's 'massive' air strikes hit ISIL in Syria

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Study: Internet plays role in terrorism

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No refugee vetting system is perfect: Goodale

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RCMP proposed to tail journalist in 2008

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U.S. law professors to Obama: End gun violence

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With gun violence in the United States at epidemic proportions, a group of the nation’s top constitutional scholars, organized by the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy (ACS), sent a letter to the White House calling on President Obama to take executive action to curb gun violence. 

The law professors note there are numerous actions the administration can take which are fully consistent with the constitutional limitations on the President’s power, which preserve the Second Amendment rights of Americans, while reducing gun violence and saving lives. 

“These top law professors make a powerful legal argument for executive action at a time when people are dying and gun violence goes unchecked,” said ACS President Caroline Fredrickson. “The president has implored Congress to act, but it is clear the leadership will instead pander to the fringe gun lobby. He can take the steps, which are fully within his constitutional power, to fight this epidemic.”

In their statement to the White House, the group of 23 law professors highlights several important actions within the administration’s power that would ensure the federal gun laws are applied consistent with congressional intent. Among these steps are:

  • Clarifying which gun sellers are “engaged in the business” of dealing firearms, and therefore must obtain federal licenses and conduct background checks on would-be gun purchasers. Just as services like eBay and Craigslist allow Americans to offer a broad range of goods for sale online, numerous Internet services facilitate the sale of large numbers of firearms by unlicensed dealers, frequently without conducting any background checks. The failure of these high-volume sellers to obtain licenses and conduct background checks creates a ready source of firearms for dangerous criminals and other prohibited persons, and fuels the illegal gun trafficking that arms criminals and undermines efforts to reduce gun violence. The Administration should act to close this dangerous loophole.
  • Directing the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to identify which prohibited persons are most likely to commit crimes after failing a background check when attempting to buy a gun; to prosecute these individuals for illegally attempting to obtain firearms; and to inform state law enforcement whenever a prohibited person in their state fails a background check. It is common sense that law enforcement has a strong interest in knowing when anyone the law deems too dangerous to buy a gun attempts to do so. The Administration should act to ensure prompt and appropriate follow-up by law enforcement when prohibited persons attempt to buy guns.
  • Issuing guidance to ensure that the federal statute prohibiting gun possession by persons convicted of “misdemeanor crimes of domestic violence” is interpreted broadly to prohibit gun possession by convicted abusers, regardless of their marital status. In 2009, and again just last year, the Supreme Court made clear that Congress intended the federal domestic violence misdemeanor statute to be applied broadly to protect victims of abuse from gun violence. To effectuate this Congressional directive, the Administration should clarify that the term “similarly situated to a spouse” in the domestic violence misdemeanor law should be interpreted consistent with the Violence Against Women Act.

The American Constitution Society for Law and Policy (ACS), founded in 2001 and one of the nation's leading progressive legal organizations, is a rapidly growing network of lawyers, law students, scholars, judges, policymakers and other concerned individuals dedicated to making the law a force to improve lives of all people. For more information about the organization or to locate one of the more than 200 lawyer and law student chapters in 48 states, please visit www.acslaw.org.

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One of the largest hacking schemes ever

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Trudeau's decision on security file promising

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Record registration for student UAS competition

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Students at Canadian Universities have responded in record numbers to the 2016 Unmanned Systems Canada Student UAS Competition. A total of 18 teams from across Canada have registered for the event. 

First time competitors from Western, Guelph and McGill will add excitement and new input to this 9th annual challenge. In search of a greater competitive edge, Concordia, McGill and Toronto have each registered two teams. The competition takes place in two phases with Phase I, a design report from each team due January 15th, 2016 and Phase II, the flying demonstration, April 29th – May 1st 2016 in Southport, Manitoba. To be eligible students must be registered in a full time program at a Canadian university or college, and design and successfully fly their UAS. 

The purpose of the competition is to promote and develop Canadian expertise and experience in unmanned systems technologies at the university and college levels. Teams will be graded on the quality and completeness of their design report and the results of the aerial demonstrations – there will be separate prizes for each phase.

To give the students real life UAS experience, the scenario for this competition combines problems encountered by the agriculture sector. Each team is a “company” hired to use their UAS to determine the health of a local farmer’s crops. They must identify the crops’ location, type and health and map them with an airborne sensor system. The farmer accepts the validity of using crop probes to measure soil conditions in specific locations to validate the aerial results obtained via the image system. Various symbols and small structures are set out in the flying zone to simulate the scenario. A written report on the findings is also submitted to the judges. 

The competition is designed and judged by a dedicated group of Unmanned Systems Canada experts, and supported by local volunteers and industry sponsors. Through various student activities, the association is helping to foster greater success in Canadian UVS ventures. 

Once again Southport Manitoba will open its doors to host the competition. This thriving community, an hour west of Winnipeg, features an airport, aviation and aerospace training facilities, and on-site accommodation that allow easy access for early morning starts and late night discussions. 

Thanks to enthusiasm and support from past sponsors, the competition has been able to raise the bar and increasingly attract first class teams with innovative ideas. The competition serves as a job interview scenario and a number of UAS competitors have been hired by a sponsoring company. Sponsorship opportunities are available. To become involved as a sponsor as we support and celebrate the best and brightest of the Canadian UAS sector, contact competition@unmannedsystems.ca

2016 UAS Competition Teams

  • Carleton University - Blackbird 
  • Concordia University - Phénix 
  • Concordia University - UAV 
  • École de technologie supérieure - Dronolab 
  • Guelph - Jeramiah in the Sky 
  • École Polytechnique - Smartbird 
  • McGill - Aero McGill Drones 
  • McGill - Robotics 
  • Ryerson University - RUAV 
  • Simon Fraser University - Guardian 
  • Sherbrooke - VAMUdeS 
  • University of Alberta - AARG 
  • University of British Columbia - UAS 
  • University of Toronto - AeRo 
  • University of Toronto - UAV 
  • University of Victoria - AERO 
  • Waterloo - WARG 
  • Western - Western Engineering Aero Design

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German intel agency reportedly spied on FBI

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DHS to discuss cybersecurity with Chinese

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Global aviation security crackdown looms

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The future of internet security

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RCMP to honour 20 people for Oct. 22 bravery

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Border warning: ISIL's Canadians may return

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Liberals to review mandatory minimum sentences

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Liberals to review mandatory minimum sentences

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Military-grade security in an app

© 2015

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Military-grade security in an app

© 2015

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Rethink security by focusing on resilience

© 2015

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New British passport praised for security

© 2015

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Goodale named Minister of Public Safety

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10 ways SMEs can boost security for less money

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Security exercise set for Calgary airport

© 2015

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Goodale named Minister of Public Safety

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New British passport praised for security

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Andrew Leslie resigns from board of security firm

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Security exercise set for Calgary airport

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71 Quebec schools targeted by bomb threats

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10 ways SMEs can boost security without spending money

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Privacy and Video Surveillance in Mass Transit Systems

(Executive Summary) In addition to outlining the results of an investigation into the Toronto Transit Commission?s plans for the expansion of its video surveillance system, the report provides a review of the literature into the effectiveness of video surveillance, as well as an assessment of the role that Privacy-Enhancing Technologies play in protecting privacy.

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Securing Mass Transit: A Challenge for Homeland Security

(June 2008) Securing America's mass transit systems presents a real challenge for federal, state, and local agencies and for the transit systems themselves. Long routes and open facilities make the systems vulnerable and very limited financial resources make it difficult for systems to reduce those vulnerabilities.

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Report into the London Terrorist Attacks

(March 2006) On the morning of 7 July 2005, three explosions rocked the London transit system. This Report examines intelligence and security matters relevant to those terrorist attacks, and focuses in particular on: whether any intelligence which may have helped prevent the attacks was missed or overlooked; why the threat level to the UK was lowered prior to the attacks (and what impact this had); what lessons were learned on the back of the attacks; and how these are being applied. https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/224690/isc_terrorist_attacks_7july_report.pdf

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State Department 2008 Annual Report

(April 2009) In an annual report on terrorism, the State Department says "Al-Qaeda remained the greatest terrorist threat to the United States and its partners" even though its structures have weakened and public support has waned. And it warns that Al-Qaeda "has reconstituted some of its pre-9/11 operational capabilities" by using the Pakistan border areas, replacing key leaders, and restoring some "central control" by its top leadership. The report notes that since the September 11 attacks, Al-Qaeda and its allies have moved from Afghanistan into Pakistan where they have built "a safe haven to hide, train terrorists, communicate with followers, plot attacks, and send fighters to support the insurgency in Afghanistan."
Download HTML Report at http://www.state.gov/s/ct/rls/crt/2008/index.htm or PDF Report at http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/122599.pdf

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EU Terrorism Situation and Trend Report

2015

(July 2015) The European Union Terrorism Situation and Trend Report, better known as the TE-SAT, aims to provide law enforcement officials, policy makers and the general public with a fact-based understanding with regard to terrorism in the European Union (EU). In addition to the presentation of facts, it seeks to identify trends in the development of this phenomenon.

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The Search for a Jihadi Identity in Europe

(March 2009) Norwegian Defense Research Establishment Research Fellow, Petter Nesser, presented this paper at the conference ?Understanding Jihadism: Origins, Evolution and Future Perspectives? Oslo, 19-21 March 2009.

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Ideological Influences and Patterns of Jihadism in Europe

(February 2009) Petter Nesser (FFI) ? After the invasion of Iraq, European nations that joined the Bush Administration?s War on Terror became targets for terrorist cells composed of people with varying ties to al-Qaida, many of whom were Europeans by citizenship, or ethnicity. What were the ideological influences and patterns of jihadi terrorism in Europe?

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Suicide as a Tool of Insurgency Campaigns

(April 2009) This paper by Luis de la Corte and Andrea Gim?nez-Salinas offers a short review of the recent scientific literature about three main issues related to suicide violence.

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Perspectives on Terrorism
By the Terrorism Research Initiative
2015

(Vol 9, No 5, 2015) This open access journal in the field of terrorism- and counter-terrorism studies offers numerous peer-reviewed articles on the topic of terrorism.

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Ethno-Religious Conflict in Europe

(Feb 2009) This paper addresses sources of societal tensions and violent conflict involving minority groups of Muslim culture in contemporary Europe. Six country studies are presented: Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Spain, Russia and the United Kingdom.

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Terrorism in the West

(July 2009) A review of terrorism trends, incidents, and landmark court cases. (Foundation for the Defense of Democracy, Center for Terrorism Research)

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French Approach to Counterterrorism

(Jan 2010) There are a number of reasons why France has not suffered a terrorist attack in more than a decade. One reason is due to the successes of the country's experienced and well-established counterterrorism apparatus.

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Getting it Done in Foreign Policy

(April 28, 2009) In this address to the Canadian Airports Council, Derek Burney, former Ambassador to the US and CDFAI Senior Research Fellow, argues that in the midst of this global recession and time of uncertainty for geopolitical institutions such as NATO and the G8, Canada must reinvigorate its relationship with the United States if it is to have meaningful global influence).

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A Recommended Canadian Aerospace Policy

(February 2009) The Canadian Society for Senior Engineers (CSSE) ranks the various Canadian Aerospace program areas, and makes strong recommendations to the Government of Canada. Included among them is a call to increase R&D funding in these areas.

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National Security Strategy? UK

(March 2008) The UK has published the first annual update of the National Security Strategy which sets out an updated assessment of the national security threats facing the UK and includes proposals for combating threats to cyber security.

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Emergency Management - Public Safety Canada

(Fall 2009) Public Safety Canada is responsible for coordinating the management of emergencies among federal departments and agencies. This includes establishing policies and programs for the preparation, testing and exercising, and implementing emergency management plans; monitoring and coordinating a common federal approach to emergency response along with the provinces – an "all-hazards" approach incorporating prevention and mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery; and coordinating the protection of critical infrastructure. This report examines how Public Safety Canada carries out these responsibilities and its efforts to enhance emergency response and recovery in coordination with six other departments that have specific roles in emergency management. This audit covers performance of federal departments and agencies and events (2005-2009).

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The Role of Local Police

(April 2009) Striking a Balance Between Immigration Enforcement and Civil Liberties. This report presents findings and recommendations from the Police Foundation's year-long national effort that examined the implications of immigration enforcement at the local level. The project brought together law enforcement executives, policy makers, elected officials, scholars, and community representatives in a series of focus groups across the country and at a national conference in Washington. The report includes research on the rights of undocumented immigrants and the legal framework for enforcement of immigration laws, demographics, immigration and criminality, evaluation of federal efforts to collaborate with local police on immigration enforcement (287(g) program), a national survey of law enforcement executives on immigration issues and local policing, the experience of undocumented youth, and a survey of law enforcement executives attending the foundation conference about their views on local immigration enforcement issues.

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Physical Evidence Handbook

The need for proper recognition, collection, and preservation of physical evidence is apparent to all who are involved in the criminal justice system. Physical evidence can directly or indirectly lead to the solution of a crime. Charging and prosecution decisions may be affected by the quality of the physical evidence supporting the case. United States and Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions have placed great emphasis upon physical evidence in criminal cases. This handbook is offered in the belief that increased knowledge leads to understanding and that understanding leads to excellence. It was written to provide information regarding the legal and Laboratory requirements surrounding collection and preservation of physical evidence, it is a general procedural guide outlining methods for collecting and preserving physical evidence.

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Wisconsin Physical Evidence Handbook

The need for proper recognition, collection, and preservation of physical evidence is apparent to all who are involved in the criminal justice system. Physical evidence can directly or indirectly lead to the solution of a crime. Charging and prosecution decisions may be affected by the quality of the physical evidence supporting the case. The Wisconsin State Crime Laboratories provide an important link between collection and court presentation of such evidence. This handbook is offered in the belief that increased knowledge leads to understanding and that understanding leads to excellence. It was written to provide information regarding the legal and Laboratory requirements surrounding collection and preservation of physical evidence. This handbook is a general procedural guide outlining methods for collecting and preserving physical evidence.

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News Reports of Natural Disasters and Extreme Weather

2015

(current updates) Coverage of the latest news and comment on natural disasters and extreme weather around the world.

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Great Shakeout Earthquake Drills

(July 22) Simple actiities and games designed to increase student knowledge about earthquake science and preparedness.

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Earthquakes, Insurance, & Loss Prevention

Your guide to understanding insurance coverage of damage from natural catastrophes including hail, flood, storms, wildfires, wind, lightning and earthquakes.

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Emergency Planning - Protect Your Pet
By Robin Tierney

(July 22) Being prepared is critical to saving your pets when disaster strikes. The following tips include information from the Humane Society of the United States, the American Red Cross, United Animal Nations and other sources.

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How to Prepare Your Home for an Earthquake
by Dylan Chalk
2015

(July 22) This article will give you practical tips on how to prepare for The Big One.

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Red Cross Disaster Safety Checklist

(July 22) The American Red Cross has created this Disaster and Safety Library to assist you in preparing your home, school and workplace in the event of a disaster or emergency. Here you will find fact sheets, preparedness checklists, recovery guides and other helpful information to keep you informed and safe.

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Global Homeland Security, Defense & Intel Markets Outlook

(May 2009) The new report details the future Technology and market trends of major HLS-HLD market sectors including: Biometrics, Aviation security, Maritime security, Information. Technology and Cyber terror security, CBRN security, Infrastructure security, Counter terror intelligence, the private sector HLS, RFID based systems, Border security, Perimeter security, First responders, HLS-HLD C3I systems, Nuclear-Radiological screening systems, and more.

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Global Spying: Probabilities In Modern Signals Intelligence

(July 2009) This article presents insight to the realistic possibilities of mass Internet surveillance by refuting the common argument is that there is too much traffic to be able to "listen" to all chatter.

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Industry & Defense Applications Forecast 2010-2015

(Feb 2009) High Altitude Aerial Platforms & Payloads: New in-depth report includes detailed analysis of today?s persistent market, its inhibitors, drivers, and opportunities, combined with penetrating technical examination of both flight platforms and payloads. The report covers a wide spectrum of upcoming military and private industry business opportunities in areas as:

  • Counter IED
  • Missile Defense
  • Tactical Communications in Urban and Mountainous areas
  • Commercial Communications such as Cell Phone and Internet
  • Mobile Internet Protocol Television
  • Border Protection and Maritime Patrol
  • First Responders Communication and Surveillance Support
  • Satellite Radio without the Satellites
  • Google Earth-type Imagery on demand

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Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality - Studies & Reports

(March 2009) AHRQ has developed more than 60 emergency preparedness-related studies, workshops, and conferences to help hospitals and health care systems prepare for public health emergencies. Many of these projects were made possible through collaboration with ASPR and other federal agencies. For more information, contact AHRQ Public Affairs: 301-427-1859 or 301-427-1855.

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Cdn Assessment of Vulnerabilities and Adaptive Capacity

(2009) Events have illustrated that both under-developed and developed countries can be overwhelmed by climatic events and that people living in Canada may be vulnerable to climate risks.

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Health Canada Climate Reports (various, updated)
by Health Canada
2015

Health Canada has released numerous reports on topics related to Climate Change and Health, including a Heat Alert Guidebook. For a compendium, check this web site.

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Arctic Sovereignty Report for Canada

(July 2009) Canada's Northern Strategy focuses on four priority areas: exercising our Arctic sovereignty; promoting social and economic development; protecting the North's environmental heritage; and improving and devolving northern governance, so that Northerners have a greater say in their own destiny.

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Latest Earthquakes in the World

(updates daily) This site lists the latest global earthquakes with magnitudes of 2.5 or greater in the United States and Adjacent Areas, and a magnitude of 4.5 or greater in the rest of the world.

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Initiatives on Banking and Government

(Aug 2009) CDFAI Fellow, Colin Robertson describes how the Canadian banking system and good government initiatives have helped the nation weather the economic recession and garner the rare distinction as the only country in the industrialized world that has not faced a single bank failure, nor called for bailouts or government intervention in financial and mortgage sectors. CDFAI is now called the Canadian Global Affairs Institute.

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Article: Cyberwar is Inevitable

2008

(Dec 2008) When it comes to a future cyberwar, the issue is no longer if it'll happen. Instead, the concern is when it'll happen, how bad it'll be, and how many attacks we'll have to withstand.

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Managing Large-Scale Security Events

© 2015 FrontLine Defence (Vol #, No #)

(2013) This is a planning primer for local law enforcement agencies. When law enforcement executives are tasked with managing a large event, they can maximize their efforts by learning from other agencies and adopting proven practices. Too often, however, past lessons learned are not documented in a clear and concise manner. To address this information gap, the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance worked in partnership with CNA to develop this Planning Primer, which synthesizes salient best practices pertaining to security planning for a large-scale event, specifically pre-event planning, core event operations, and post-event activities. This document includes detailed information on 18 core operational areas that law enforcement executives can give to lead law enforcement planners as supplemental guidance. This guidance can be used as a foundation for coordinating area-specific operational plans and can be modified to accommodate event security requirements and existing protocols. Furthermore, supplementing each operational area presented in the Planning Primer are actionable templates, checklists, and key considerations designed to facilitate the planning process.

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Chemical Risk Benchmark Report

(2009) Marsh's Chemical Practice has produced a 2009 benchmark study that compares the risk management and insurance programs of more than 220 chemical industry buyers in the United States.Marsh's Chemical Practice has produced a 2009 benchmark study that compares the risk management and insurance programs of more than 220 chemical industry buyers in the United States.

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Updating the Secure Border Action Plan

© 2015 FrontLine Defence (Vol #, No #)

(June 2009) This document updates the Secure Border Action Plan from 2006 and reviews other important areas of interest that have emerged and which require investigation and action.

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The Arctic Ecosystem
By Environment Canada

(Ongoing Updates) Environment Canada has prepared numerous reports on the Arctic Ecosystem in relation to Climate Change and Conservation Strategies.

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Northern Strategy Report for Canada

© 2015 FrontLine Defence (Vol #, No #)

(July 2009) Canada's Northern Strategy focuses on four priority areas: exercising our Arctic sovereignty; promoting social and economic development; protecting the North's environmental heritage; and improving and devolving northern governance, so that Northerners have a greater say in their own destiny.

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Access Control Market Report 2007

© 2015 FrontLine Defence (Vol #, No #)

(April 2007) This report discusses access control for a site, building or area, as opposed to access control for data or computer networks. Physical access control products include: audio and video entryphones; keypad entry systems; card- and token-based access-control systems (including Wiegand cards, magnetic-stripe cards, barcode cards, proximity systems, long-range/ hands-free systems, systems to control vehicle access, smart-cards and dual-function cards); and biometric systems. Some systems incorporate more than one of these technologies for added security.

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Position Papers on Access Control Application Scenarios

© 2015 FrontLine Defence (Vol #, No #)

(February 2010) W3C has published a report and full minutes of the Workshop on Access Control Application Scenarios, held in Luxembourg on 17th and 18th of November 2009. Participants from 17 organizations examined the current limitations of access control, privacy enhancement, distributed handling of access control, and other challenging use cases.

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UK: National Security Strategy Update

© 2015 FrontLine Defence (Vol #, No #)

The United Kingdom's National Security Strategy provides a comprehensive basis for planning and delivering the most important responsibility of Government – protecting the country and safeguarding its people and way of life. This 2009 update documents guiding principles and a strategic framework. It outlines the why, who or what, and how these strategies will be implemented.

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Trudeau pressured to reverse Harper-era security policies

© 2015

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Regulate prying eyes in the sky: privacy czar

© 2015

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Regulate prying eyes in the sky: privacy car

© 2015

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Trudeau pressured to reverse Harper-era security policies

© 2015

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Public safety network has spectrum but no funds

© 2015

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U.S. and U.K. to hold joint financial cyber security exercise

© 2015

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How Trudeau can improve national security policy

© 2015

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How to create a cyber security plan in 5 steps

© 2015

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U.S. fears threat from North

© 2015

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RCMP officer’s widow urges support for first responders with PTSD

© 2015

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Ontario to ban carding practice by police, Impose new rules

© 2015

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Province House defends post-Ottawa shooting security measures

© 2015

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PQ calls for Public Security Minister Theriault to step down

© 2015

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Two men posing as Calgary cops demand money

© 2015

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Is Russia planning to attack undersea cables?

© 2015

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Bill C-51 gives CSIS mandate to disrupt

© 2015

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Anti-terrorism drill rocks the streets of Montreal

© 2015

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Three Canadians arrested in $5-billion money-laundering scheme

© 2015

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Human trafficking investigation leads to rescue of 20 people

© 2015

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Ottawa shooting had lasting impact for MPs, staffers

© 2015

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Alleged sexual assault by Quebec police against native women

© 2015

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Tests show some firearms can be converted to fully automatic

© 2015

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More changes to Parliament Hill security possible

© 2015

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Liberals plan swift overhaul of anti-terror law

© 2015

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Gunned-down soldier remembered one year after Parliament attack

© 2015

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Ottawa shooting inflated the rhetoric of 'homegrown terrorism'

© 2015

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Commemoration of the events of October 2014

© 2015

The Government of Canada will hold a ceremony at the National War Memorial on October 22, 2015, at 11 a.m., to commemorate the assault on Parliament Hill one year ago.

The event will also honour the sacrifices of Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent and Corporal Nathan Cirillo, and the bravery of the first responders.

His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada, and other dignitaries will attend the event. Dignitaries will lay wreaths and His Excellency will deliver an address on this occasion.

A 21-gun salute will be fired by 30th Field Artillery Regiment, Royal Canadian Artillery from the lawns of Parliament Hill around 11 a.m.

Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18 Hornets will conduct a flyby in the missing man formation over the National War Memorial at 11:20 a.m.

Members of the public are welcome to attend.

When: Thursday, October 22, 2015, 11 a.m.

Where: The National War Memorial, 30 Wellington Street, Ottawa

What: A ceremony to commemorate the assault on Parliament Hill and the deaths of Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent and Corporal Nathan Cirillo.

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Security lapses noted before Oct. 22 Parliament attacks

© 2015

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German police agency receives Airbus H145 helicopter

© 2015

The federal-state police of Baden-Württemberg have taken delivery of the very first H145 in police configuration at Airbus Helicopters’ industrial site in Donauwörth. The aircraft is the first of an order of six to be handed over to the launch customer.

“It is of the utmost importance for our police to be able to rely on the quality of their resources in order to meet the challenges of their daily missions. With the acquisition of a total of six new police helicopters we guarantee the high quality standards of the squadron. I’m particularly pleased with the fact that with the world’s most modern police helicopter H145 Baden-Württemberg is once again a pioneer in terms of technical innovation in our country”, said Reinhold Gall, Minister of the Interior of Baden-Württemberg.

As the new reference helicopter for law enforcement, the H145 features all-in-one capabilities: deployment of Special Forces units, VIP transport, external load, as well as observation and reconnaissance. It is equipped with a modern mission management system by Euroavionics that facilitates the multi-role capabilities in police missions. The MMS, in combination with comprehensive connectivity options such as LTE and Wi-Fi, makes the aircraft the most modern police helicopter on the market.

Its primary surveillance mission is supported by forward-looking infrared (FLIR) and daylight cameras, controlled by an on-board operator who also handles communications and data exchange with ground-based police resources.

“Now entering service for law enforcement operations, the Police Baden Württemberg will be using the H145’s capabilities for its most challenging missions” explained Wolfgang Schoder, CEO of Airbus Helicopters in Germany. “In line with our company’s commitment to customer satisfaction, we have set up a dedicated logistic team available 24/7 to support mission execution of Police Baden Württemberg.”

As one of the three largest German States in size and population, comprising the major cities of Stuttgart, Karlsruhe, Freiburg and Mannheim, the helicopter will cover an area of roughly 36,000 km2. The H145 is the latest member of its family, incorporating new Arriel 2E engines and the company’s Fenestron® shrouded tail rotor, along with upgraded main and tail rotor gearboxes, as well as the innovative digital avionics suite Helionix® with 4-axis autopilot. The federal-state police of Baden-Württemberg currently have a fleet of two EC155 and six MD902, which is to be succeeded by the H145. Police forces throughout the country will soon be operating an all-Airbus Helicopters rotorcraft fleet.

Airbus Helicopters is the global leader for the law enforcement market with 45 percent of the deliveries in the last ten years. In Europe, the light-twin H135 and H145 families are the most successful helicopters in this segment with approximately 40 percent of the in-service fleet.

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IAI unveils new ground-based systems to counter UAVs

© 2015

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Ottawa event to mark anniversary of Parliament Hill attack

© 2015

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Threes suspects in custody after Peel police officer shot

© 2015

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Outdated GPS maps put public at risk, say paramedics

© 2015

The Peel Paramedic Union, OPSEU Local 277, is warning that your family members' lives may be endangered if paramedics cannot find your location in time due to outdated maps on ambulance GPS units.

The Paramedic Union has repeatedly informed management that the maps in the GPS units are unacceptably out of date. In March, Paramedic Managers were confronted with GPS units that had not been updated since 2010. Management indicated that maps were updated frequently and denied a systemic problem. Six months later, no updates have occurred and the majority of maps are out of date by more than two years.

With Caledon, Brampton and Mississauga growing so fast, entire subdivisions are invisible to older GPS units and that could mean delays to the lifesaving treatment provided by paramedics.

"Paramedics are experts at providing complex prehospital medical care, but we can't provide that care if we don't know where the patient is," says Dave Wakely, President of OPSEU Local 277. “Our Paramedics want to be able to find you as fast as possible. Seconds can make a difference, and no one should risk death because of a five-year-old map in the responding ambulance.” 

For further information or comment please contact: Dave Wakely, President, OPSEU Local 277 media@peelparamedics.com / 905-601-3208

  • Peel Paramedics respond to approximately 500 emergency calls per day. 
  • Peel Paramedics respond to 100,000 emergency calls annually.
  • 550 Paramedics are employed by Peel Paramedic Services.

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Israelis reach for firearms in wake of attacks

© 2015

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Thales celebrates launch of innovation Experience Centre

© 2015

Mayor Jim Watson along with leaders from Thales in Canada and members of the Ottawa academic and business communities, officially opened Thales’ new Experience Centre today.

“As a leader in R&D investment in Canada, Thales has designed this innovative new space to support the development of new technologies and help build the next generation of solutions, with our partners in key areas such as urban security, smart mobility and urban computing,” said Siegfried Usal, Vice President, Strategy and Communications. "For Thales, this dedication to co-innovation is the only efficient model to create shared value and growth for our customers, partners and ourselves.” The goal of the Thales Experience Centre is to foster local collaboration while supporting the co-design solutions of the future in urban security and defence, together with industry, start-ups and academic institutions.

“The launch of this Experience Centre demonstrates Thales’ commitment to the research and development of new technologies right here in Ottawa, and is a vibrant example of a thriving high-tech company in our community,” said Mayor Jim Watson.

The local, real-world testing capacity of the Experience Centre leverages Thales’ leadership as a founding partner of the Joint Research Unit in Urban Science located in Quebec City, taking a citizen centric approach to local challenges and together creating solutions that will improve the way key assets including water, electricity, urban spaces and infrastructure are managed.

Consistently ranked among the top 100 R&D spenders in Canada, Thales, with its Experience Centre, will also support the growth of Ottawa’s world class high-tech knowledge sector with planned addition of up to 50 new positions at Thales in Ottawa over the next five years.

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Harper government withholds millions budgeted for crime prevention

© 2015

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Harper "exactly" followed protocol during Parliament attack

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Mounties who helped end Parliament attach still not recognized

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Transport Canada revokes clearance of worker because of ex-husband

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RCMP probe dangerous drone flight near Vancouver airport

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Former police commissioner warns against carding reform

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Ex-officers file suit against RCMP for releasing records

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Parliament security may consider niqab rule

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U.S. security fears led to Syrian refugee case slowdown in Canada

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National Defence seeks car hacker

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Liberals promise new gun control measures

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Thousands of hackable medical devices exposed online

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Trump dismisses U.S. gun control measures

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Police: Oil price dropped, crime increased in Edmonton

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92% of calls to RCMP terror tip line are "non-sensical"

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Conservatives would create list of criminal groups

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Court refuses to stop public service security screening

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Tories may strip other criminals of citizenship

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Tories to strip citizenship from Canadian-born terrorist

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Concerns over 'research chemicals' on illicit drug markets

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DHS selects Raytheon to protect U.S. government networks

© 2015

Raytheon will provide full lifecycle development and sustainment support under a new contract with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that could be worth approximately $1 billion. DHS and the 100+ federal agencies using its infrastructure will draw upon the company’s broad cyber capabilities and 30 years of experience working with defense, intelligence and commercial customers.

As prime contractor for the Network Security Deployment Division (NSD), Raytheon will help safeguard the .gov domain. The U.S. government has noted that cybersecurity is one of its biggest national security challenges, and the White House has said the country must take "aggressive and decisive steps to protect our networks and information.“

“Today’s cyber threats are increasingly pervasive and serious, and our government and private sector institutions require the best protection possible,” said Dave Wajsgras, president of Raytheon Intelligence, Information and Services. 

Defending a nation against continuous and evolving cyber threats involves securing the hardware and software within its Internet domain (think websites and email addresses that end in “.gov” for the United States). To accomplish this, Raytheon will support government efforts to develop, deploy and sustain systems that monitor, analyze and mitigate cyber threats to .gov networks.

“With today’s technology, an infinite amount of data is at our fingertips, and this increased access brings increased risk,” said Valecia Maclin, Raytheon program director. “As a premier provider of computer network defense to the nation, we are deeply committed to delivering unrivaled innovation to the federal government.”

Raytheon’s capabilities stem from decades of mission experience and the acquisition of more than 12 cyber companies over the last ten years. The company’s innovations in information sharing, predictive analysis, forensics and situational awareness address multiple areas of national interest.

“Raytheon has invested more than $3.5 billion in recent years to build our cybersecurity capabilities, and we’re looking forward to bringing the very best and most innovative solutions to the Department of Homeland Security,” Wajsgras said.

With threats continuously evolving, nations around the world need protection against inevitable cyber attacks. In partnership with the federal government, Raytheon is helping DHS secure the United States today and tomorrow.

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Police report pot possession incident every 9 minutes

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CFO role expands in age of digital security

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Investigation shows cracks in anti-terrorism strategy

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A year-long Calgary Herald/Postmedia investigation reveals underlying cracks in Canada’s strategy to prevent homegrown terrorism.

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Ottawa SIU abusing power, board told

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Atos and Airbus Defence and Space sign cyber security agreement

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Tory budget surplus came at cost to public safety

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Budget "insufficient" to meet security needs of embassies

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Tests for recidivism broken: judge

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Calgary man who joined ISIL charged with terrorism

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Cyber security investing grows

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Hidden security cameras deterring crime in Atlantic Canada

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Canadian border agency readying for Syrian refugees

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Balancing public safety with the public purse

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Security spending will reach $75.4b worldwide: Gartner

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Data breach puts millions in B.C. at risk

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Passports exposed to security risks under new system

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New airport security training centre to open in Quebec

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Getting hacked is 'inevitable'

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Teen arrested by counter-terrorism police released

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Paramedics, firefighters at odds over 'symptom relief' meds

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Pentagon to build nation-wide security database

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Political leaders shift focus to security and foreign affairs

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Press the reset button on security

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B.C. public safety concerns raised after Surrey shooting

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Cyber-security partnership capitalizing on car-hacking fears

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17 ways to address Canadian security issues

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B.C. pharmacies face new security measures

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New security measures at Calgary City Hall

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Oilpatch crime on the rise, says security expert

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Emergency services: Winnipeg strives for innovation

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False security: new book blasts anti-terror law

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AM General to build Humvee ambulances for disaster relief

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Toronto police planted heroin to justify illegal search

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Planned passport renewal change opens door to fraud

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U.S. spies says ISIS intelligence altered

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Former minister: Security threat no reason to block refugees

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Anti-terrorism focus distracts from bigger border security woes

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PS anti-terrorism branch dysfunctional prior to terror attacks

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Which Canadian region spends the most on IT security?

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Defence and Election 2015: the Conservative Party’s view

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Terrorists getting Pakistani ID cards

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Canada's first Arctic patrol ship now under construction

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Millions affected by U.S. government hack not yet informed

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Ontario safety minister vows to end ‘arbitrary’ police checks

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Why Israel dominates in cyber security

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New Ontario traffic laws now in effect

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Paid police suspensions cost Ontario more than $13,000/day

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Canada to install SAR repeaters on U.S. satellites

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Mulcair to unveil plan to end violence against women

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RCMP database on missing persons Is overdue, overbudget

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Canada’s police chiefs want to seize mail

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Border wall between Canada and U.S. worth looking at

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Police seeking power to de-activate dealers’ phone numbers

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Conservatives using ex-soldiers for extra security

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Fredericton police chief disappointed with recent suspensions

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Surveillance cameras in Vancouver used to deter violence

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European ministers to discuss rail security after attack on train

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Four security metrics that matter

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Senior police officer found guilty over Toronto G20 arrests

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Senior police officer found guilty over Toronto G20 arrests

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Airbus and PAL sign collaboration LOI

© 2015

OTTAWA

Today, Airbus Defence and Space and Provincial Aerospace signed a letter of intent which facilitates the exploration of extending their relationship internationally. Provincial Aerospace had previously been announced as Airbus Defence and Space's primary Canadian partner for its C295 aircraft in its bid to replace Canada's fixed-wing search and rescue (FWSAR) aircraft. This agreement will go well beyond that.


Simon Jacques (Head of Airbus Defence and Space, Canada), Pablo Molina (Head, Airbus Defence and Space Military Aircraft Canada), Derek Scott (Vice President, Program Development, Provincial Aerospace) and Richard Poole (Business Development, Provincial Aerospace) sign a letter of intent to facilitate the exploration of extending their relationship internationally. (CNW Group/Airbus Defence and Space).

"The ability to leverage the FWSAR program to create jobs and economic growth in Canada is a must," said Pablo Molina, Head of Airbus Defence and Space Military Aircraft Canada. "Airbus Defence and Space firmly believes that successful partnerships must extend beyond any one procurement program or contract. This agreement reinforces that commitment."

"Airbus Defence and Space is compatible with export-oriented Canadian companies such as Provincial Aerospace", said Keith Stoodley, Chief Development Officer of Provincial Aerospace. "This, combined with their demonstrated commitment to Canadian industry, presents the best and lowest-risk opportunities for Canadians to maximize economic benefits from the FWSAR program."

Through this letter of intent, Provincial Aerospace and Airbus Defence and Space, agreed to explore international collaborations for in-service support, mission systems integration, and aircraft modifications. The companies are committed to supporting and developing global supply chain opportunities for Canadian industry.

Provincial Aerospace and Airbus Defence and Space have demonstrated their ability to meet their obligations to Canadian industry. The C295 team is poised to do the same once again for the FWSAR tender. Airbus Group has a strong industrial presence in Canada, directly employing more than 1,800 people. In addition, Canadian companies are within the top 7 Airbus Group suppliers.

The C295 is the proven, reliable and low-risk solution for Canada's FWSAR program. It is the market leader in its segment with 155 aircraft sold so far to 21 countries. This will provide Provincial Aerospace and the rest of Canadian partners, including Pratt & Whitney Canada, CAE and L-3 Wescam, with access to a real and growing export market.

"This announcement showcases the extension of benefits to Canadian industry from the FWSAR program. With our Canadian partners, we look forward to continuing our record of success in Canada, and contributing to substantial economic growth well into the future", concluded Molina.

About Airbus Defence and Space

Airbus Defence and Space is a division of Airbus Group formed by combining the business activities of Cassidian, Astrium and Airbus Military. The new division is Europe's number one defence and space enterprise, the second largest space business worldwide and among the top ten global defence enterprises. It employs over 38,000 employees generating revenues of approximately €13 billion per year.

About Provincial Aerospace

Provincial Aerospace is a fully integrated, international aerospace and defence company with a focus on mission systems design and integration, aircraft modifications, surveillance operations, logistics and in-service support. Having flown maritime surveillance aircraft for over 35 years for government, military and industry clientele, Provincial Aerospace has evolved into a world leader in intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance (ISR), maritime patrol aircraft (MPA), and search and rescue (SAR) operations and in-service support.  Backed by over 200,000 hours of airborne special mission operations, Provincial Aerospace offers our customers an unparalleled degree of experience and flexibility.

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It can’t happen here! Can it ?
TIM DUNNE
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 3)


Canadians should take warning from the events in Paris on 13 November. Too often, Canadians dismiss terrorist threats, warnings and close calls with the usual attitude that “Canada is not important enough to attract terrorism,” or that “it can’t happen here.” That kind of thinking is dangerous. It can happen here, and it has happened here.

The FLQ Crisisof October 1970, when the Québec separatist group, Le Front de Liberation du Québec conducted a campaign of bombings, and kidnapped British trade commissioner James Cross and Québec labour minister Pierre Laporte. Not about to be bullied, Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau decisively invoked the War Measures Act suspending civil liberties, and offering a $150,000 reward for information that would lead to the arrest of the kidnappers. Laporte was killed but Cross was released after a tip was sent to police. Some of the kidnappers were exiled, others tried and convicted for kidnapping and ­murder.

The Squamish Five, also known as the Vancouver Five, were “urban guerrillas” active in Canada during the early 1980s. As disenchanted activists, Ann Hansen, Brent Taylor, Juliet Caroline Belmas, Doug Stewart and Gerry Hannah adopted the name “Direct Action” and followed the philosophies of the Anarchist movement, believing that by conducting “propaganda by the deed”, they could motivate people into popular action. They vandalized the headquarters of a mining company, and the offices of the British Columbia Ministry of Environment. On 30 May 1982, they detonated a bomb at BC Hydro’s Dunsmuir substation, causing $5 million in damages. In October, they stole a pick-up truck and loaded it with 550 kg of dynamite and drove to Toronto, where they detonated their explosives at Litton Industries on 14 October 1982, causing an estimated $3.87 million in damage. They returned British Columbia and, on 22 November 1982, fire bombed three Red Hot Video outlets in the Vancouver area. 

An Armenian terrorist group attempted to assassinate Turkish trade attaché Mr. Kani Güngör, who was attacked in the parking lot of his home on 8 April 1982. No arrests were ever made.

A few months later, on 27 August 1982, Colonel Atilla Altikat, Turkey’s military attaché to Canada was assassinated in Ottawa as he drove to work. The Armenian militant group, Justice Commandos Against Armenian Genocide, claimed responsibility for this attack.

A few years later, on 12 March 1985, three extremists of the Armenian Revolutionary Army attacked the Turkish embassy in Ottawa, shot and killed 31 year-old Claude Brunelle, a University of Ottawa student working as the embassy’s security guard. Gunmen blasted open the embassy’s front door and assembled some 12 hostages, including the Turkish Ambassador’s wife, his teen-age daughter, and embassy staff. Ambassador Coşkun Kırca escaped by jumping from the second floor window. The gunmen told Ottawa police they intended “to make Turkey pay for the Armenian genocide” of 1915.

The bombing of Air India Flight 182 on 23 June 1985, killed 329 people, 268 of whom were Canadians. This was the largest mass murder in Canadian history. The cause of the crash was under investigation for years, but airline officials suspected Sikh extremists of planting a bomb on the aircraft. On the same day, an explosion in the baggage handling area of Japan’s Narita Airport was also attributed to Sikh terrorists, and may have been related. 

Four Sikh extremists wounded visiting Punjab Chief Minister Surjit Singh Barnala in a botched assassination attempt in Gold River, BC, on 25 May 1986. 

Members of the Jamaat ul-Fuqra were arrested on 3 October 1991, for attempting to bomb a Hindu temple, a movie theatre, and a Toronto East Indian restaurant. 

Letter bombs were sent to the Alberta genetics laboratory on 11 July 1995, and the Mackenzie Institute in Toronto 13 July 1995 (reportedly by radical animal rights groups).

In its 11 October 2002 edition, The Economist wrote that an Egyptian suspected of being an al-Qaeda terrorist, was discovered hiding in a sea container in the Italian port of Gioia Tauro. Had he not been discovered, his voyage would have taken him to Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Members of the terrorist group dubbed “The Toronto 18” intended to use three rental U-Haul panel vans filled with fertilizer bombs to damage or destroy the Toronto Stock Exchange, Canada’s spy agency, and a southern Ontario military base, to affect the Canadian economy, kill and injure Torontonians and cause chaos in downtown Toronto. Their objective was to force Canada to cease its military operations in Afghanistan. They were arrested in June 2006.

In August, 2010, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police discovered and prevented a terrorist bomb-making plot by three men, one with possible links to the conflict in Afghanistan. Investigators found schematics, videos, drawings, books and manuals for making explosives. “A vast quantity of terrorist literature and instructional material was seized, showing that the suspects had the intent to construct an explosive device for terrorist purposes,’’ they said.

In April 2013, Canadian police stopped a passenger-train attack in Toronto that was believed to be associated with al-Qaeda.
There have also been single-perpetrator events in Canada, such as:

Canadian Army Corporal Denis Lortie, unhappy with policies of the Québec and federal governments, entered Québec’s Assemblée nationale on 8 May 1984 and shot three government employees and wounded 13. A Canadian Forces supply technician, he intended to kill Premier René Lévesque and other members of the governing Parti Québécois.

In 1997, a Québec man drove up the steps of Ottawa’s Parliament Buildings.

In 1989, another man hijacked a bus and drove it onto the grounds of the Canadian Parliament and discharged a firearm, without injuring anyone.

A 25-year old man struck and killed Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent on 20 October 2013 with his car. Two days later, another man shot Corporal Nathan Cirillo, aged 24, in the back as he stood sentry at the tomb of the Unknown Soldier, then rushed to the Centre Block of Parliament where he was shot to death by Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers. Both young shooters claimed to have been influenced by ISIS.

These latter examples are open to questions of whether they actually constitute acts of terrorism, perpetrated by so-called “lone wolf” assassins and would-be assassins, or by disturbed people suffering from mental illness. 

Terrorism is not a single, unrelated political event but one step in a continuum of political activities that can be undertaken, at the center of the spectrum of political activities, by those with extreme motivations. In truth, no one feels safe from the capricious violence of terrorism. It plagues all communities, afflicts all people, and all governments. No government is immune to it, and virtually every government has taken some precautions against it.

We need to ask ourselves, are we taking enough precautions? 

====
Tim Dunne is FrontLine’s East Coast correspondent.

© FrontLine Security 2015

 

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Editor's Corner
Towards a Safer and More Secure World
A Request to FrontLine Readers
JONATHAN CALOF
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

It has been an interesting first few months for me as the new editor of Frontline Safety and Security. I have spent the last few months meeting with organizations tasked with, or interested in, keeping the public safe – let’s call them partners in safety and security. These have included various intelligence organizations, associations, first responders, and Universities. I have also attended a variety of security and intelligence conferences. The reason for these get-togethers was two-fold:

First, I wanted to find out what issues are confronting these important members of our safety and security community. What issue do they need written about? What do they need help with?

Second, I wanted to reach out to potential partners who would be willing to work with Frontline Safety and Security to help shape this important publication as it heads into its second decade as a forum for the public safety and enforcement communities that protect our security writ large.

In addition, as part of my regular travels over the last few months, I have met with safety and security professionals from Israel, South Africa, United Kingdom and elsewhere. This community, while guarded in many respects, is also anxious to share their approaches to safety/security in an effort to strengthen all response to myriad threats that can jeopardize a peaceful way of life.

There are great practices and experiences around the world in safety and security that need to be shared, and I am working hard to ensure that Frontline Safety and Security becomes the “go to” publication for sharing these practices. Readers will see a bit of this in this issue with Noam Gilutz’s sharing of some of Israel’s success in developing cyber entrepreneurs, with more to come.

What struck me during all of these encounters is the sheer breadth of the groups involved in helping to keep their country’s citizens safe and secure. What surprised me, however, was the commonality of concerns among these varied organizations.

Perhaps the breadth is best exemplified in the Canadian Safety and Security Program’s “communities of practice”, which includes chemical, biological, radiological-nuclear, explosives, forensics, biometrics (for national security), border and transportation security, critical infrastructure vulnerabilities, resiliency and interdependencies, e-security, emergency management systems and interoperability, psychosocial and community resilience, and first responders (fire, paramedics, police and law enforcement). Adding to this exhaustive list of players and categories, are the associations who represent members within these communities of practice (for example the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries), and the academic institutions that provide training in these areas such as the George Brown College School of Emergency Management, or University of Ottawa’s Telfer School of Management, which are actively engaged in police, intelligence and crisis management training.

And let’s not forget the wide array of government departments and agencies, at all levels, that are dedicated to North American safety and security: federal agencies such as the overarching FEMA and DHS in the U.S., and the department of Public Safety in Canada; and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, which is tasked with maintaining food safety and security; and private organizations such as NavCan, which is responsible for navigation safety in Canada; State and Provincial Emergency Management offices, the U.S. National Guard, and so many others.

There are numerous volunteer organizations, such as Search and Rescue groups and the Airport Watch program which was spearheaded by an Ottawa RCMP officer and is now an international group of volunteers dedicated to assisting authorities with perimetre surveillance.

Without exaggerating, it truly is impossible to list them all but, in the spirit of interoperability, FrontLine does its best to cover the issues of importance to each and every one of our readers – because none of you work in silos during an emergency!

As I mentioned earlier, the second thing that struck me was the commonality of what is seen as the priorities in safety and security. The top two that surfaced at all of my meetings was cyber-security (a focus in this issue) and critical infrastructure security.

These two areas were front and center with the government people I met with, associations and even private sector groups – and is a topic readers will see a continued focus on in future issues.

Each of these groups also has sub-topics that are also of key importance. For instance, an important concern for first responders is that of identifying and treating mental health issues, including PTSD – a problem all first responder leaders are faced with. As one Police Chief said this month, you can’t separate policing and health. This important issue will be increasingly addressed in our pages. The category of “responder health” writ large also encompasses pandemic preparedness, as was recently in the global consciousness when medical practitioners flocked to Africa to battle Ebola. I am reaching out to all groups to let me know what their sub-topic area(s) of importance are.

All of these organizations need to work together to ensure the safety of our citizens, and all have concerns that need to be addressed within the pages of FrontLine Security and Safety.

It was not that long ago that Chris MacLean, the publisher, asked if I would be willing to serve as executive editor of Frontline Safety and Security. Her passion for helping create a safer and more secure world convinced me that I would have to get involved, and I hope those who read this column share this passion and similarly are willing to work with me towards this goal and will share their ideas and concerns, and offer me their help.

We will share with readers international best practice and articles addressing key concerns of our safety and security community, in partnership with all of you.

In some cases, we will have to sound the alarm along many areas of Safety and Security. For example, this quote from Michel Coulombe, head of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, in the CSIS annual report, says it all: “There are violent people and violent groups that want to kill Canadians. It’s a sobering observation to make, and there is no euphemistic way of saying it.” Also to sound another alarm, as noted in Canada’s Aid Effectiveness Agenda: Increasing food security is one of Canada’s three priority international development themes, and “Canadians demand food safety and traceability.”

To all of you, who work in these and similar organizations, I offer an opportunity to share your concerns and your knowledge with our readers. Send me what you consider to be the top safety and security issues, what you feel is needed to keep us all safe and secure, and what you think should be covered in FrontLine Security and Safety. I also urge those with products and services, to support the work of this magazine by advertising in our pages.

Join me, let’s work together to create a safer and more secure world. Send me your ideas, requests, offers. Who do you think we should approach to write articles about safety and security? How can you help? I look forward to and welcome your contributions, assistance and comments.

====
Jonathan Calof, Executive Editor
jcalof@frontline-security.org
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Editor's Corner
New Directions
JONATHAN CALOF
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

My first 9 months as executive editor of Frontline Safety and Security has been a great learning process that included meeting with and learning from the people and organizations responsible for keeping Canadians Safe and Secure. The purpose of these meetings was to learn more about their issues, about what they wanted – and needed – to read about in the pages of FrontLine. In response to the question about your top issues, the top three answers have consistently been cybersecurity, critical infrastructure protection and mental health of frontline responders. On this latter, a head of one of our police forces stated “you can’t talk about police without also talking about their safety and mental health, this is a primary issue”.

In keeping with the needs of our readers, our spring edition focused on both cybersecurity and protecting frontline security officers, while this issue has articles about critical infrastructure protection.

In continuing my focus on learning from others, FrontLine will  bring best practices and lessons from around the world to our readers. The more I hear from you, the reader, on what you need to read to help in your important role of keeping us safe and secure, the more I can focus on appropriate topics in this magazine.  Let FrontLine be your partner in keeping the public Safe and Secure by offering innovative ideas from experts on topics of critical importance to you.  

This voyage of learning and discovery has also taught me that Canadian knowledge and expertise is indeed very deep. We are fortunate to have recognized leadership in many areas of safety and security. I was impressed at how, during a conference I attended, senior leaders from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Center for Disease Control cited Health Canada and Canadian Food Inspection Agency personnel as examples of the best globally. These agencies are responsible for keeping our food system (and beyond that) safe for all Canadian’s and are on the front lines in many areas of practice and knowledge. Expect to see articles about these areas in the near future.

In the spring issue, we had an article by James Norrie, formerly of Ryerson University in Toronto and now the Dean of Business and Justice Studies at Utica College in NY – which has the only dually-accredited cyber security & cyber-crime programs in the United States.

In future issues you will read more on infrastructure protection from, among others, globally recognized infrastructure protection programs at Carleton University in Ottawa and Dalhousie University in Halifax.

Canada is also developing a variety of intelligence training programs that you will read more about in coming issues, including significant developments from the University of Ottawa’s Telfer School of Management.

Another important area for safety and security for which Canada is developing extensive expertise, is in the area of Analytics, and readers will be seeing several articles on this emerging field.

Canadian expertise, infrastructure protection, cybersecurity, health and safety of frontline workers, analytics, and food safety, are some of the areas FrontLine will be focusing on as a result of what you, the readers, are looking for.

I encourage all of you to continue emailing me with article suggestions, topics, authors and feel free to propose articles that you want to write. You are not just our valued subscribers, but our partners as well.

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Jonathan Calof, Executive Editor
jcalof@frontline-security.org
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Secure Application Enablement
Lets CSOs Say Yes Instead of No
BY DALE O'GRADY
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

As Canadians, it’s in our DNA to be helpful and to avoid saying “no.” So why is it that “no” is the typical response from a security-minded IT organization when asked to enable a new application on the network? While it may not be the case everywhere, it is certainly widespread enough that in many organizations the CSO is often referred to as the CS-NO. That said, the CSO should certainly have our sympathies because he/she is confronted with a nearly impossible choice when it comes to balancing network productivity and network security. When asked to implement a new application, it’s either say “yes” and have potentially hazardous applications running alongside mission critical applications or say “no” and block entire application families, reduce productivity and drive a wedge between users and IT.

For example, in a distributed workplace it’s not uncommon for employees to utilize remote presentation applications such as Microsoft Lync or Cisco Webex to collaborate with external partners or to deliver remote presentations. The productivity benefits of these applications are obvious, yet many desktop-sharing and file-transfer options can compromise an organization’s security posture. And as lines between personal life and work continue to blur, IT organizations are also struggling with how to handle applications not traditionally associated with business use. Facebook, Twitter and iCloud, while primarily used for personal reasons, either have legitimate business uses or are commonly accessed by employees while at work. The challenge is that most of these applications include sync or file sharing functions that could allow users to upload sensitive company data to servers outside of the organization – either intentionally or by accident. These concerns mean little to the typical employee, but not allowing users to take advantage of applications that make their jobs easier is a sure way for the CIO/CSO to get an inbox full of complaint email.

Fortunately, a development in network security policy and technology, known as secure application enablement, has made it easier for IT to control access to applications and data in a way that doesn’t interfere with day-to-day business operations.

Unlike legacy approaches to security that simply blocked certain ports on the network typically exploited by hackers (an approach any competent hacker can easily work around), secure application enablement is a process in which all applications and users on the network are classified regardless of the network port they use.

Once classified, IT can assign what policies and inspections are performed on an application based on who is using it and what kind of data they are accessing. Secure application enablement also gives IT the ability to implement least privilege controls on users. In other words, access to data can be restricted to only those users with a legitimate need to see or edit it.

Let’s examine a real-world implementation of secure application enablement. File sharing applications are a great way for team members in different locations to share data, and most departments in government have at least one Open Data Initiative (ODI) in place so they can safely disseminate information to various consumers. Because it’s familiar to most users, and free, Google Drive is being used in many government agencies for file sharing.

While Google Drive offers very compelling budgetary and productivity benefits, from a security point of view it can be problematic. What’s to keep a government employee, either deliberately or accidentally, from sharing confidential data with an unauthorized user? Secure application enablement would, by putting certain security policies in place. For example, it could enforce document posting policies that only permitting authorized users operating on the right device at the right time to post only unclassified CSV and PDF documents.

IT could also control how users outside the organization can access that data (business partners, for example) and give them a different level of access (give them download privileges, but no uploading).

So don’t be a CS-NO. Explore how secure application enablement can let your network’s users take advantage of all the benefits that new applications provide without having to make compromises on network security.

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Dale O’Grady is a Security Engineer at Palo Alto Networks.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Public Safety Communications & Training
The Quest for Interoperability
MIKE GREENLEY
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

Public safety, in most western nations, is a multi-agency challenge. Police, fire, paramedic, specialty rescue as well as specialty hazard units exist in various configurations at the municipal, provincial or state, and federal levels.

Each of these agencies has their own organizational structures, their own procedures, their own budgets, and their own equipment and training systems. Establishing effective day-to-day operations is therefore under the management of each individual agency, and largely works well within each individual stovepipe.

However, any emergency event or public safety incident of magnitude requires a multi-agency response. During these events, the various agencies and multiple levels of government must interoperate and collaborate to ensure effective and efficient response. As stated in the Public Safety Canada Communications Interoperability Strategy for Canada: “In the event of a large-scale, complex emergency or event in Canada, no single agency at any level of government would have the required authority and expertise to act unilaterally. A complex emergency or event is one that triggers a variety of mandates, crosses jurisdictional boundaries, and requires an approach that aligns policy and integrates efforts by federal, provincial, regional, and local responder organizations. Such events may also require support from international partners.”

Independence vs Collaboration
It has been well documented that the creation of effective multi-agency interoperability and collaboration is one of the primary challenges in public safety and emergency management. In the 2009 Report to the House of Commons, the Auditor General indicated that the main constraint to interoperability was the ability (or inability) of “fire, police and ambulance services to talk to one another and to communicate across jurisdictions in an emergency.”

The solution for interoperability and collaboration involves commonality. Collaboration can be more easily achieved if various agencies have similar organizational and command structures, have the same procedures, and have either the same communications equipment or products built to the same standards.

Having worked in the industry for over 15 years, the core challenge to achieving multi-agency interoperability appears to be the need for any one agency to maintain its independence while at the same time being able to collaborate when required. Independence comes from being able to maintain management over ones organization, to control the organizational structure, to own the procedures, to manage the budgets, and to make resource allocation and purchasing decisions.

The management process to achieve collaboration, while fighting the resistance that the need for independence brings, is very time consuming and, as a result, change is slow. Any solution requires extensive committees across multiple agencies to enable solutions that involve everyone. The resulting solutions end up being rather abstract so that each agency can still have the independence to customize its own solution.

The extent of the effort required is illustrated through the work on public safety communications in Canada. This work began in the late 1990s and early 2000s leading to the 2003 Public Safety Radio Communications Project Report, which was followed in 2005 and again in 2008 by senior government reviews by the Senate Committee on National Security and Defence (SCONSAD) who identified the need for a National Strategy for Interoperable Communications for emergency response. These efforts led to collaborative work in 2007 by the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP), the Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs (CAFC), and the Emergency Medical Services Chiefs of Canada (EMSCC) who joined up with the Canadian Police Research Centre (CPRC) in the Canadian Interoperability Technology Interest Group (CITIG). The CITIG initiated the creation of the Canadian Communications Interoperability Plan (CCIP), resulting in a strategy document in 2011 followed by a 2013/14 Action Plan that is still currently being worked through.

This sequence required a decade-long process to create a multi-agency committee and publish a strategy and action plan, to be followed by who knows how much time to actually implement that plan. This will prove to be difficult as independence continues to be protected – the plan and actions “encourage participation” of all the various agencies, but participation “remains voluntary” to guarantee their independence.

With a comprehensive national communication strategy reliant on voluntary participation, it would seem that all efforts could still be at risk during procurement and implementation. Agencies will need to give up some independence and commit to purchasing against the common standard, or purchasing against a common solution that has been arranged centrally within the country, in order to gain a massive benefit towards collaboration.

Training Presents the Same Risk/Reward as Communications Equipment Procurement
The same challenge seen in communications and situational awareness systems exists in training. Individual and small team skills are developed within the local operational unit, within the local command structures, using local procedures, and exercise the specific equipment of the team.

To develop multi-agency teams that can effectively interoperate in a larger-scale emergency, training and rehearsal must occur at the inter-agency level. Police-Fire-Paramedic teams must first learn to work together at the municipal level, and then with their provincial and federal peers, with each level learning how to interoperate not only together but under the command of the next level of government in anticipation of scenarios where control of the emergency must be exercised by the next level of government.

Once again, the solution to achieve practiced multi-agency response skills is clear. If the community could conduct collective and combined training exercises on a regular basis, using simulation-driven scenarios to create realism, then the appropriate decision-making and team-response skills could be generated.

The challenge to achieve this collaboration returns once again to agency independence. Each agency has its own training plan and budget, which is typically used to focus on individual and small team training within their organization. As a result, there is no one dedicated to multi-agency collective training or combined exercises across multiple levels of government, and there is no funding source for these training activities.

Agencies such as Public Safety Canada state training is an organizational objective, however, there does not appear to be a work force dedicated to developing, training, and testing the multi-agency response across the multiple levels of government – nor does there appear to be funding sources available for combined exercises on a regular basis across the country.

In its Communications Interoperability Strategy for Canada, which identifies Training and Exercises as a core strategic objective, Public Safety Canada states that “In order for interoperability to be effective, the usage of the equipment and familiarity of procedures is achieved through regular training and exercises. This will help establish and maintain competency and familiarity between and across jurisdictions.” However, the challenge remains to identify the coordinator and/or source of this collective and combined training.

In the past, some central programs within the country existed, such as the Canadian Emergency Management College, which Public Safety Canada closed in 2012. Now, private institutions are starting to partially address the market void. The Justice Institute of British Columbia (JIBC) has focused their institution on this market, with a reported 26,000 people completing courses there each year, presumably each funded by their local agency. JIBC leverages simulation enhanced scenario based learning environments for their programs. Algonquin College in Ontario operates the Police and Public Safety Institute reaching out to the broader market, while Assiniboine Community College in Manitoba has appeared to respond to the market need through the creation of a Public Safety Training Centre (PSTC), encouraging agencies to send personnel to their scenario and simulation based training environments.


ECS patient simulation. (Photo: CAE)

In some countries, industrial training firms are starting to fill the market void for integrated multi agency training and exercise management. For example, CAE Inc. of Montreal has created a business in the country of Brunei to establish a Multi-Purpose Training Center (MPTC) which includes a multi-agency Emergency Management training center with a full curriculum, which will provide training not only for the country but also for neighbouring countries that are part of the ASEAN region. In this example, Canadian industry is investing in a Joint Venture with the federal government to create a training facility and curriculum that individual agencies can then participate in, paying as each of their students attend.

This example may have merit in Western nations to resolve the collective training procurement challenge where no central agency exists to generate or procure collective or combined training. Perhaps federal agencies that have a training mandate such as Public Safety Canada could generate Public-Private-Partnerships (PPP) with industry to create collective and combined training centers with mobile multi-agency exercise capabilities. This would create the capacity to meet the collective training need, as long as individual agencies agreed to send their individuals and teams to be trained ensuring that the capacity was leveraged. Once again, agencies would need to sacrifice a little bit of independence to gain a lot of collaborative training benefit.

If this was to occur, the highest levels of agency (Federal Public Safety) with the potentially greater access to resources, could partner with industry to create the training and exercise systems that all levels of government could independently participate in. The only trick will be that the drive for independence and the need to be able to “decide” on an annual basis how each individual and team trains would have to be compromised to some extent. Agencies have to give a little of that independence and commit to a long term training program with a centrally established training and exercise capability in order to ensure that a shared program is funded and available to drive combined and collective agency response skill development. This is all possible, but like the path that the communications community has lived in generating interoperable communication plans, it will take time to change the culture, align requirements and expectations, and affirm a commitment to a shared outcome. Giving up a little independence could generate a lot of collaborative capability.

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Mike Greenley is a 25 year veteran of the defence and security market in Canada. He is currently the Vice President and General Manager of CAE Canada, and the Chair of the Board of the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries (CADSI).
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Care, as a Duty
Significant contributions by real people
BY VIKRAM KULKARNI
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 3)

Globally, Canadians have earned a reputation as devoted humanitarians. As one of the most secure countries in the world, Canada, for the most part, enjoys sufficient flows of capital, labour, goods and services. The evolution of ‘Human Security’ practices is directly related to the values of democracy, tolerance, dignity, and respect. As Canadians, we willingly take on the responsibility to protect people – doing so with ‘Care as a Duty.’ 

The past two decades have seen rapid population growth in Canada, particularly in the four major cities of Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver and Calgary. Such growth brings security challenges and increased demands on public safety officials. 

Fulfilling the duty of care imposed by common law and legislation has become imperative. Breaching this duty may give rise to actions for negligence or even criminal prosecutions of individuals and agencies. 

Despite differing viewpoints surrounding ‘Care as a Duty,’ there are general principles that must be adhered to. Combating opposing perspectives requires mutual understanding and collaborative discussion of ideas and views, irrespective of their source. What is paramount, is that we acknowledge and provide the fundamental protections and services deserved by our fellow human beings.

In Canada, members of the armed forces, fire fighters, paramedics and law enforcement officials, including police and peace officers, are all considered responsible practitioners of public safety. For the record, a peace officer has a limited enforcement authority as compared to a police officer, however, there are vital commonalities. 

All practitioners of public safety are morally and legally mandated to recognize ‘Care as a Duty’. They must ensure the protection of the most vulnerable individuals in society from risk of harm and abuse. There should be a sense of ownership of and commitment to this principle, which includes taking primary responsibility, coordinating efforts, and making conscientious decisions: in short, “doing the right thing.” 

In the western province of Alberta, the Ministry of the Solicitor General and Public Security has successfully put into place measures and directives to improve public safety. There are over 3000 peace officers working with many agencies throughout the province. The Calgary Police Service (CPS) is the police agency of that jurisdiction. Working cooperatively, Calgary Transit Peace Officers (CTPO) have been assigned policing responsibilities on or in relation to transit assets, infrastructure and service.

In the execution of duties and responsibilities relating to transit properties, CTPOs are mandated to respond to every call concerning an individual’s welfare. These calls must be attended by a CTPO who assesses the situation and follows through by ensuring the supervision and care of the person or people involved. CTPOs have the authority to override individuals’ decisions to care for themselves, especially in cases where people might do harm to themselves or are unable to make rational decisions to care for themselves.

A career in public safety comes with risks and inconveniences and responsibility. One recent example was an individual who had been the victim of an assault. This person was intoxicated to the point where he failed to realize he had a deep laceration on his cheek, from which the bone protruded, and which caused a blood trail for about five hundred meters as he kept walking away. The severity of the injury and the inability to make a rational decision by the individual allowed CTPOs to override his choice not to seek assistance. The CTPOs had a duty to recognize this individual was in dire need, and so requested Emergency Medical Services (EMS) to be present, thus facilitating prompt medical assistance. One thing is certain – individuals requiring such assistance and direction are those most ­vulnerable in society. 

Protecting lives and securing the safety of fellow humans is part of the job. In doing so, one is serving one’s community. It is a selfless profession, one that makes a difference in the quality of life and the community one serves. One of the key features of the profession is a public affirmation of an oath identifying the high ethical standards to be applied in a consistent manner throughout an organization. Police and peace officers believe and practice this oath in their day-to-day duties. 

There are approximately one hundred thousand law enforcement professionals in Canada, many of whom are involved in proactive work addressing the complex issues encountered on the job. Training and mediation for citizens and communities are intended to promote awareness, social stability, and peace. 

A fitting example would be RCMP Chief Superintendent Doug Coates who, with his colleague Sergeant Mark Gallagher, were among 82 Canadian police officers assigned to the RCMP’s International Peace Operations Branch for the United Nations Stabilization mission, and had been deployed to Haiti to help train local law enforcement officers. They readily chose to leave the safety and security of Canada and serve the needs of the less fortunate in the challenging and developing regions of the world and, during the earthquakes of 2010, made the ultimate sacrifice. They, along with many others, are indeed real people making significant contributions to ‘Care as a Duty.’ 

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Vikram (Vik) Kulkarni is a Peace Officer Sergeant with the Public Safety and Enforcement section of Calgary Transit. He holds a Masters degree in Human Security and Peacebuilding from Royal Roads University and can be reached at Vikram.Kulkarni@calgary.ca

© FrontLine Security 2015

 

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Israel's Cyber Entrepreneurs
BY NOAM GILUTZ
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

In today’s global cyber security market, Israel is considered a significant player in both R&D and in sales. This success is evident by the many R&D centers launched in Israel by global giants such as Lockheed-Martin, IBM, EMC, RSA, GE, McAfee, Palo-Alto, VMware, and more. The dozens of new startups being launched are attracting hundreds of millions of dollars in local and global venture capital investments; and Israel’s impressive export levels of cyber security services, now stands at about 5% of the global market.

A lot has been said and written about the factors contributing to Israel’s success in the cyber security market. This article will drill down one layer, beyond the titles and the technicalities, to illustrate the core characteristics of the Israeli cyber pro and how this standing in the global arena has been achieved.

This may be an unfortunate analogy, but the seeds for entrepreneurial activity can in some ways be measured and discussed in the same way that terrorists are – by capability and intent. For the cyber entrepreneur, capability is defined by the combined package of skills, experience and knowledge required to become successful. The intent, on the other hand, is his motivation to do so.

The Israeli cyber entrepreneur is the product of a unique environment that both drives such skill sets and creates the motivation to put these capabilities into action. These specialized skills are acquired by: education provided in high schools and universities; during the mandatory army service; and by working in the cyber security market for local and global companies. The motivation – created by the probability of higher financial compensation – is nourished by a social environment that endorses entrepreneurship and holds it dear. The financial eco-system is significant in that it provides substantial funding and support to entrepreneurs who have aspirations to achieve the Holy Grail – the exit – a significant financial compensation by means of an IPO or an acquisition.

The Intrinsic Layer
The majority of technological cyber entrepreneurs in Israel gained relevant experience and expertise during their service in the Israeli Defense Force (IDF). That experience is later applied to creating innovative cyber solutions and tools in the private sector. During military service, starting at the age of 18, young Israelis learn, and put to use, the tools needed to both safeguard and gain access to IT assets for various purposes. The main significant differentiating factor from commercial companies doing the same is that the IDF is operating in a non-for-profit and no-budget-restraints environment where the motivation is national security and embodies a sense of national responsibility for the greater good. This galvanizing combination provides results to some of the toughest problems and most impossible challenges as it pushes the game to a higher playground.

Beyond the technological layer that is being infused into these young IDF soldiers, they are also benefitting from invaluable lessons and hands-on experience (sometimes under fire) in leadership, commitment, mission-driven performance, professionalism, teamwork, collegial spirit, responsibility and discipline.

Cyber education in Israel is available and promoted on many levels – high school, undergraduate, graduate, and advanced academic degrees. In high-schools, pupils can attend dedicated programs for cyber education promoted by the ministry of education, and some are in collaboration with the IDF. All universities offer academic degrees on all levels in cyber security, and also conduct their own research efforts by faculty members or cyber workshops and research institutes.

Cyber security is the day-job of more than 30,000 Israelis in over 450 companies, including startups. A career in the cyber security market usually means a higher than average income with significant room for advancement compared to many other high-tech sub-markets. I call it “day job” because it would not be an exaggerated assumption that more than a few of them are aspiring to create their own venture and are at various stages of doing so. In their day jobs, the cyber professional is gaining valuable experience and expertise in commercializing his knowledge, engaging clients, understanding budget restraints, learning key business trades and gaining in-depth knowledge of the market for cyber security – local and global.


A group of soldiers in the rigorous cyber defense course. “Cooperation is also quite important because the reality is not that each person sits by his or her desk working alone – we must work as a team.” (Photo: Israeli Defense Force)

The Social Layer
The entrepreneurship spirit in Israel is being developed and supported by the vivid, self-nurturing cultural atmosphere of a startup nation. In a country where coffee shops are overcrowded with groups of people working on their laptops, entrepreneurship is the hottest profession. As more people become entrepreneurs, others are inspired to assess similar paths. The success stories constantly announced over the media of young startups raising millions of dollars in investments, or even better – being acquired for hundreds of millions of dollars, are exciting – sparking minds and planting the seeds of motivation.

The cyber community in Israel is both diversified and active. Members of this community have diverse interests and come from a wide range of backgrounds: employees of established companies and of young startups; officials from many government agencies and offices; investment professionals seeking profitable opportunities; clients and users of cyber security technologies; academia and research institutes staff; and more.

Despite the size and diversity of this group, the atmosphere is generally more of cooperation than competition. Attending one of the many cyber security conferences and trade shows in Israel actually feels more like a class reunion than a battlefield of corporate espionage like one might expect. No one will sell or trade commercial trade secrets, but the general atmosphere is collaborative – “who can I ask for help”... “let’s see if I can help you”... “I can put you in touch with”... will be dominant in the discourse. In fact, reaching out to cyber peers for assistance is not uncommon when a cyber-pro or entrepreneur is faced with a problem that despite his best efforts he is not successful in solving. The synergetic nature of this social environment is a key component in Israeli success. This community is very engaged and active beyond the daily activities, with opportunities such as the many conferences, trade shows, and various local networking meetings.

The Money Layer
Money makes the world go round, and the cyber security market too. Funding is a key and substantial component of the needed capabilities to do most anything in today’s modern world. The Israeli cyber security sector enjoys investments form local and global venture capital funds, joint ventures, and strategic investments from local and global corporations, which results in impressive revenue for its goods and services sold in Israel and exported globally.

The number of global corporations and venture capital activity active in Israel in the cyber security markets is astonishing. Venture capital funds, high-tech accelerators and incubators are seeking promising entrepreneurs and startups to invest in hoping for a significant return on their investment. Large cyber security corporations are also looking for those “promising guys”, and seeking to gain untapped market share by acquiring or investing in them.

Financial success stories are a major contributor to the motivation of Israelis to become successful cyber security entrepreneurs. For some time now, headlines in the Israeli media often focus on Israeli companies generating profits, or being acquired for substantial amounts of money, or attracting significant investments. As more and more cyber pros witness these massive financial incentives, especially related to successful entrepreneurs, this success becomes self-nurturing.

The Government Layer
The Israeli government is an important and positive influence on the local cyber security market – national cyber-security related agencies, national R&D programs, government-corporate cooperations, government funding for R&D, government support for cyber companies, educational programs, and more, are all part of the official policy and strategic plan of the government to position Israel as a lead player in the global cyber security market. This government support is contributing to both the capabilities of the cyber professionals and to the overall incentive to join the market and succeed in it.

Incentives
In conclusion, cyber security is a growing, multi-billion dollar, technology-driven market providing significant incentives to successful business endeavours. The market is expected to grow with the internet, particularly as IT becomes more and more embedded in to all aspects of daily life. Israel is fortunate to have multiple unrelated factors that, when combined, form the solid foundations of a successful cyber security industry.

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Noam Gilutz is the Founder and Managing General Partner at DS Strategic Partners (DSSP) in Israel. DSSP’s Investment strategy is focused on disruptive security and intelligence startups.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Belgium: Crisis & Continuity Management
The New Paradigm for Chief Security Officers
ANNICK TREMBLAY
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

The role of a director of security, especially with the added spectre of terrorism, takes a different road with the new trends in lone wolf attacks (as famously experienced recently in Boston, Canada, France, and other parts of Europe). These acts involve self-initiated attacks by individuals, with no demonstrable planning or coordination from a larger organization. As such, this type of threat is challenging traditional ways of securing our environment.


Blast at plant in Southern France. (AP Photo/Stringer)

In Belgium, after the January 2015 Charlie Hebdo attack in France, Belgian Counter-terrorist units blocked what was described as a jihadist plot to stage a “grand scale” attack in eastern Belgium. Two gunmen were killed and another wounded in preemptive raid that resulted in a shootout near the German border.

There are 4 levels of terror threats in Belgian defined by the Coordinating Unit for Threat Analysis (OCAD). After this anti-terrorism operation, Belgian authorities raised the national alert level from two to three on a four-point scale. Belgium is such a small country that they say you can tour the entire country with one diesel refuel. However, it is one of the biggest diplomatic countries; and is a member of major international organizations like the European Union and NATO – both of which are headquartered in Brussels, Belgium.

After raising the treat level to 3, a tense atmosphere could be felt in Brussels, as several police cars could be seen rushing through the city at high speed and with loud sirens. A series of false bomb threats happened during this period. The list of places that had to be evacuated included the European Parliament, the Belgian paper that ran Charlie cartoons, the Belgian Newspaper Le Soir, and one of our company sites.

In my capacity as Director, Crisis & Continuity Management at GSK, a science-led healthcare company, we had already raised our threat level with different security measures, however, an anonymous document was found in February, stating the deposit of a bomb in one of the production buildings at our Belgium site – we had to evacuate 5000 employees to ensure their security.

This experience was different than my previous evacuations in Canada. It was the first time that I needed to operate a crisis committee in a level-3 threat environment – it was not a drill, I had to take into account the possibility of a real bomb. I could not rely on any background experience in this situation. The level of stress was suddenly a factor my decision process, and our crisis committee members were also on edge.


Lock down after terror attack on gas factory.

Even though you prepare to stretch beyond your comfort zone when working in security or law enforcement, decisions have to be made with confidence and trust in the crisis team.

We handled the events in stride but, reflecting afterwards, I realized that, even though I began my career as an operative for the Canadian Security of Intelligence Service (CSIS), I had never been as close to terrorism as what happened while managing crisis and continuity for a private company.

Lessons Learned
One of the best practices, after any big incident, is an After Action Review (AAR). The main purpose is to learn from the experience and take the lessons learned to the next step, or to accomplish related tasks more effectively the next time. Basically, the AAR helps to assess what went right, what went wrong, and create an understanding of what needs to be improved so that a revised list of actions can be developed.

After almost two months at Level 3, the terror threat level dropped back to Level 2. Then in June, after four months of peace in the European countries, a delivery driver with links to ISIS reportedly decapitated his boss, Herve Cornara, before ramming the delivery van into gas cylinders at a gas factory that was often on his route, in an attempt to blow up the building. Cornara’s head was found pinned to the gates between two ISIS flags at the American-owned Air Products gas factory in Saint-Quentin-Fallavier.

All this occurred not far from Belgium and marks a continuation of radical Islamist terrorist attacks in the West. The attacks in Europe highlight the need to fight a different kind of threat: the phenomenon of ‘homegrown’ radicalization.


Police block a street in Verviers, Belgium, on 15 January 2015 after an anti-terrorist raid. (Photo: OLIVIER HOSLET, EPA)

While it might initially appear to us that jihadist terror organizations are a comfortable distance away, in Africa and the Middle East, the fact is, terrorism today is never farther away than a plane ticket or click of the mouse in your neighborhood.

No longer is this a concern of only national enforcement entities. As a security director, our No. 1 concern is now the lone wolf: a person who has become radicalized, perhaps in their own living room, by reading or watching terror propaganda.

What attracts people to join a terrorist group?
It has been suggested that people who join a terrorist group feel a need for belonging, and are looking for acceptance or possibly a new identity for themselves. However, one of the strongest motivations, particularly for the lone wolf, is the desire for vengeance, and is often shaped by a perceived injustice. To fuel these negative feelings, terrorist leaders like to claim the West is hostile toward Islam or in some way repressing Muslims.

In many ways, the various forms of social media serve as a virtual training camp – by instructing how to build bombs, how to join their organization, by sharing information, and creating a sense of camaraderie.

We need to remember that a person does not “suddenly” become a terrorist. Although sometimes a fairly rapid transition, it is an ongoing change process that family, friends, colleagues may notice along the way.

If, collectively, we become aware of how the change is progressing, we can speak up when we observe certain behavioural changes of friends or family, a colleague or employee.

In the business environment, what does the Security Director need to put in place?

A good security program is based on three pillars: prevention, dissuasion/persuasion (barriers, CCTV, procedures), and repression (investigation, sanctions).


GSK facility in Belgium.

Prevention enhances security
An awareness program helps change the mindset of employees and management, facilitating the shift from reactive instinct to an active mode of response. An effective Security Director will anticipate many potential problems to resolve the situation before it occurs. Otherwise, we will always be in a catch up mode of response (repressive action). By improving the vigilance of employees, we develop a responsible partnership by saying: if you see something, say something. One inspiring ‘speak up’ campaign was originally implemented by the New York City Metropolitan Transportation after the 9/11 terror.

Campaigns to raise public awareness about the indicators of terrorism and terrorism-related crime is more prevalent in America than Europe. This mindset is not yet ingrained into the European culture, possibly because Europeans still vividly remember the atrocities of World War II. “See and say” is socially counter-intuitive to what they learned as kids. For a long-time employee, to tell on another long-time employee feels like an intimate betrayal of friendship and trust.

To be effective, the security professional of the 21st Century requires both technical and behavioural skills. By developing the skill of influencing and being successful at establishing an Insider Threat Program (ITP) into the organization, the security director will help the company adapt and protect its people against the insider (potentially terrorist) threat.


One difficulty for implementing an Insider Threat Program (ITP) in Europe, is that we do not know how to define the insider who might become a threat. Europeans tend to react to internal threats when we should be proactive.

Defining the human threat requires a change of perception. We’ve done a good job in protecting organizations from external threats, and the technology for physical and IT protection is constantly improving. Culturally, we tend to rely on technology, but it is important to focus more on people and their behaviour, especially with the new face of lone wolf terrorism. Technology will never be as good as human interaction when working with people.

One difficulty for implementing an ITP in Europe, is that we do not know how to define the potential insider. Europeans tend to react to internal threats when we should be proactive.

I believe that my North American culture could bring an added value by mixing our diversity together and developing a better security solution. In this case, we will end up with a concept of creating an Insider Threat Working Group (ITWG) to put the program in place.

Fortunately no bomb was found at our facility, but the bomb threat certainly tested our protocols and our reactions – the incident is still under police investigation.

This very real threat is why one of my main objectives now is to implement the insider threat program for our company. This is quite challenging, but how inspiring!


Radicalized Canadian Michael Zehaf-Bibeau on the day of the Parliament Hill shootings in Ottawa, on 22 October 2014.

I feel incredibly fortunate to be in this position and especially, as a North American, being able to work in Europe. Every day, the world brings more risks and has become more complex. This is why it’s necessary to develop strong networks of like-minded colleagues – to benchmark good practices nationally and globally, see what’s working in other companies, and develop new collaborations. I’m convinced that we will succeed if we follow the time-tested axiom: “Alone we go faster, but together we go further.”  

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Annick Tremblay is the Director of Security, Crisis & Continuity Management, at GlaxoSmithKline located in Belgium. ‬
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Critical Infrastructure: Degrees of Protection
BY ETTORE CONTESTABILE
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 3)

Efforts in infrastructure protection in Canada existed to different degrees before the Sept 11 tragedies, but this event brought to the forefront the need to better define critical infrastructure. At the time, the Canadian Explosives Research Laboratory (CERL) of Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) was particularly active in this field. It had been involved with supporting various law enforcement agencies, tagging of explosives, explosive transport and production accidents, bombings and other incidents involving explosives.


Left: Alexandra Bridge between Ottawa, Ontario and Gatineau, Quebec.
Right: Ambassador Bridge between Windsor Ontario and Detroit Michigan.

Once energy was identified as one of the critical infrastructure sectors, NRCan took the lead in assessing the energy sector at the federal level. That is, in conjunction with Homeland Security, NRCan performed risk assessments which “crossed” the US/ Canada borders, including off-shore facilities.

As a result of this, NRCan funded work from private and educational institutions. One of these was Carleton University where, at the time, Professors A. O. Abd El Halim (Civil and Environmental Engineering) and Martin Rudner (Norman Paterson School of International Affairs), were already active in their fields with respect to security. Together, they had established the MIPIS (Master of Infrastructure Protection and International Security) Program, of which Professor Abd El Halim is the Program Director, and Dane Rowlands is now the Associate Director. 

The idea behind the MIPIS Program was to bring together the know-how of the engineering community with the “intelligence” gathered by those in the field of international studies/affairs, both of which support policy making. Some of the topics covered in this program include terrorism and international security, explosives and blast mitigation, cyber security, transportation security, national security, and intelligence. The program has now been expanded to include all engineering departments and now students can graduate either with MIPIS degree or a Master of Engineering (M. Eng) in Infrastructure Protection and International Security (IPIS). 

A student accepted in the MIPIS Program will need to take core courses from both the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs. Various courses within this Program deal with Critical Infrastructure and Interdependencies. Anyone in the field of security can appreciate that this is a necessity to ensure continuity, resilience, and recovery. As a result, methods of risk assessments and mitigation solutions are the backbone of studies and practices in infrastructure protection.

Having performed many blast assessments, it was often clear that although technical issues were ever present and solvable, the overriding “intelligence” factor that changed hourly/daily was not always readily available. In addition, unlike other countries where terrorist acts were common, Canada did not have many experts in this field (luckily, there was no urgent need) which resulted in government contracts going to foreigners. There was – and continues to be – a need for more professionals in this field. Recognizing this, many universities have embraced the notion of critical infrastructure protection, and have created a variety of robust programs to fill this sector’s requirements.

In general, governments have identified Critical Infrastructure according to what they perceive to be important sectors that maintain their country’s social stability and economy. When these sectors were first identified in Canada, the government suddenly felt the scrutiny and the need to respond to the public’s expectations. Obviously, many were not at all focused on the potential of terrorist attacks. In fact, in security meetings, one could tell that representatives of some of these sectors were totally shocked that such threats existed against them. As a result, the process of “indoctrination” took a long time, and continues today. After all, Canada is a peaceful country and the government cannot come down too hard on these sectors in fear of stifling the economy.

Coincidentally, service providers within certain sectors were well-ahead of the game since they already had meticulously or inadvertently gone through risk assessments in order to provide contractual obligations to their clients. In so doing, they had covered, to various degrees, some of the protection elements needed against potential terrorist attacks. These included physical as well as IT-related security measures. Missing from their new requirement to have terrorism as part of their risk assessment was “intelligence”. Although the government has been sharing intelligence with various entities and individuals, they had not been doing so with most of the critical infrastructure sectors. There just had not been the need! Now, however, daily intelligence updates would be required if critical infrastructure sectors were expected to perform terrorism-related risk assessments and be diligent at maintaining their protection level. In general, service providers in such sectors rarely needed security clearances to deliver their objectives but once counter-terrorism security requirements were “imposed” by governments, individuals had to be designated and obtain the required clearance so that they could receive daily intelligence. This ongoing process takes a lot of time as it is costly to the service providers.

Although these sectors are often listed in no particular order, their criticality is not equal, and changes with internal or external events. In addition, each sector will have its own components, and different criticalities. Their “critical” ratings may be influenced by the country’s internal events but can also be forced upon them by external events. In the end, their ratings and effort to control and protect the particular critical sector will all come down to what the country can afford. All mitigation efforts will percolate down to what money is available.

So when it comes to protecting any asset, someone will need to decide its respective criticality while keeping in mind how much money is available to achieve the desired protection level. Examples of this are GSA and PWC ratings of government facilities. Not all facilities need or must be protected/retrofitted to the same level. It would be too expensive. What must be considered are not just the immediate costs but the liability one is willing to carry forward, because not all threats can be mitigated. Usually, the larger the initial investment, the lower the level of liability is, and vice versa. Unfortunately, unlike the immediate costs, the cost of liability will be uncertain, as future events are not easily predictable. Therefore, a good tenet to uphold is the maintenance phase of any risk assessment. A regular review of a risk assessment will highlight its appropriateness for the time as per its initial design threat or its inappropriateness considering new events. 

People in the field of security are often faced with defining criticalities within the identified Critical Infrastructure sectors. These can include down time/recovery time; losses (clients, money, reputation); deaths/injuries; the economy; and others. Of course, such parameters all need to be considered but, as usual, what a citizen considers appalling (ie death of an individual) and unacceptable, may not be rated as high by the government that may be more concerned with the potential future loss of hundreds of lives. 

Imagine, for example, the bombing of two bridges. The first is a bridge over a main highway in Ottawa. The damage prevents its use for a period of three months. The locals are furious and demand action. They can still get to where they need to go because there are redundancies built into the transportation infrastructure but it takes them a lot longer.

Compare that with an attack to the new (yet to be built) Windsor/Detroit River crossing. A single day of closing would result in enormous costs (considering that about 40% of the Canada/USA goods trade occurs through this point). Who will feel the effect? Depending on the duration of the closure of the crossings, businesses may collapse and individuals may lose their livelihood.

These examples show how events can be highly relevant locally, nationally or internationally and yet entirely non-critical to individuals far removed. Of course, if in these examples there were deaths, the whole sphere of influence changes, as would the people, governments and other institutions that would come to consider the transportation infrastructure as critical and needing special attention.

This superficial look at two similar events (bombing of a bridge) hints at the difficulty in objectively rating critical infrastructure. There are stakeholders everywhere. 

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Ettore Contestabile is an Adjunct Research Professor in the Department of Civil and Envi­ronmental Engineering at Carleton University.

© FrontLine Security 2015

 

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Innovation
UAVs for First Responders
RICHARD BRAY
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 3)

In the Canadianized version of the 1959 short story For Your Eyes Only, fictional spy James Bond is in Canada on a secret mission. A mysterious officer at RCMP Headquarters in Ottawa provides 007 with false paperwork and some advice: “Our Commissioner has a motto: ‘Never send a man where you can send a bullet.’ You might remember that. So long, Commander.” Today, the advice would more likely be something like, “Never send a responder into a situation where an unmanned system would be more appropriate.”

In the air, on and under water, outdoors and inside buildings, unmanned systems have the potential to extend first responders’ capabilities and do ‘dull, dirty and dangerous’ tasks. But public agencies need ‘portable, predictable and affordably-priced’ equipment. At Securetech 2015 in Ottawa, a well-qualified panel looks at the opportunities and challenges of unmanned systems. In the weeks leading up to the event, FrontLine Safety & Security spoke with scheduled participants. 


Panel member Michael Nolan, Chief Paramedic and Director Emergency Services for Ontario’s County of Renfrew knows what he wants when he launches unmanned aircraft: more freedom to operate. “The regulations under Transport Canada are written for everybody. Sounds great in theory, but in practice, maybe it doesn’t make much sense,” he says. “In most jurisdictions, and certainly in Canada, the highway traffic rules all specifically exempt police, fire and paramedic vehicles because the need to respond to emergency situations means they must violate the rules that apply to everyone else.” Just like ambulances and police cruisers, Nolan argues, first responder UAVs are responding to emergencies, and should have ­special exemptions for that.

Nolan explains that operating a UAV is no different from lighting up his truck when he is trying to save lives. “We are not operating these aircraft for fun, and we’re not surveying crops or taking pictures of real estate. So we have not yet had that discussion about easing the limits on our operations.” 

Around the world and here in Canada, industry and government are working to bring the right equipment to the front lines of first response. Unmanned Systems Canada is a national association with a leadership role in unmanned aerial systems development and application. Director Mark Aruja noted that a defining moment on how public opinion was shifting from widespread mistrust and apprehension to optimism and opportunity occurred on 9 May 2013. RCMP Corporal Doug Green had used a DraganFlyer UAV to locate a hypothermic man in the bush near Saskatoon and saved his life. “The story was in such contrast to previous accounts, that Cpl Green subsequently appeared on the Katie Couric show in the United States to a very large audience to describe what was heralded as the first Search and Rescue by a drone,” he commented. 

Steve Palmer, Director of the University of Regina’s Collaborative Centre for Justice and Safety, was host to a large number of Canadian stakeholders last summer at a meeting to draft a national strategy on first responders and unmanned aerial systems. “One of the technical challenges to satisfy is working with Transport Canada to get beyond Line of Sight. That’s probably going to be the next big hurdle on the technical side,” he said. 

Transport Canada requirements state that all “small” UAVs (25 kg or less) “must be operated within visual line-of-sight (VLOS)”. This means that the pilot must have the unmanned vehicle in sight at all times. The regulation further stipulates that visual aids such as binoculars or night vision goggles cannot be used to extend human visual contact.

“An early challenge,” says Mark Aruja, “was to meet Transport Canada’s demand that, in order for them to assign resources to the development of the necessary regulatory framework to govern the use of these aerial systems, a business case had to be built.” 

Years of cooperation and steady progress are finally getting somewhere. Aruja points to a May 2015 announcement by Transport Canada about proposed changes to the aeronautical regulations as the result of eight years of sustained effort. Among the changes, Transport Canada would establish aircraft marking and registration requirements, create new flight rules, and address personnel licensing and training.

“Nonetheless, these regulatory changes apply to operations within Visual Line of Sight, which will enable most first responder operations. The Beyond Visual Line of Sight work is well underway, and with that effort complete, we will truly see dramatic growth in commercial applications.” 

One technical key to advancing all unmanned aerial applications is the ‘sense and avoid’ capability – the ability for an unmanned aircraft to ‘see’ obstacles, including other aircraft, and take measures to avoid collision. Current regulations require a “visual observer” whose primary task is to continuously monitor the UAV and inform the pilot of any potential hazards, in order to avoid potential collision. The next step is to create sensors that can effectively provide this function. “From a technology perspective, we need sense and avoid systems in the Unmanned Aerial Vehicles we launch to meet Transport Canada standards for remotely operated aircraft, explains Chief Nolan. “We have to meet the letter of the requirements, and we very much want to meet the spirit of the requirements.” However, the technology for this weight class is not ready yet. “The machines we operate simply cannot carry the weight of the necessary equipment, and we probably couldn’t afford it anyway,” he admits. 

Palmer says the coordinating costs are not that high and, instead of trying to do it alone, responder organizations would benefit from coordinating their efforts. As a founder of CITIG (Canadian Interoperability Technology Interest Group) Steve Palmer understands how to build national consensus across jurisdictions and organizations. “We are following the same game plan of putting something together, building the leadership organically, getting the people who are most knowledgeable and interested, the ones who will roll up their sleeves and work on getting this to the table.”

Sgt. Marc Sharpe of the Ontario Provincial Police is a UAV pioneer who has been building and flying unmanned aircraft in support of police operations around Kenora in Northern Ontario for almost a decade. He believes there is sufficient goodwill within the first responder community and the aviation community to make a national strategy work. “I have not seen this level of cooperation and information sharing between Police services as I have with UAV technology,” he told FrontLine. “The RCMP have a national program with the most mature organizational structure and, to their credit, are leading in sharing their experience within the public safety community.”

When James Bond of Her Majesty’s Secret Service needs specialized equipment, he turns to ‘Q’, the head of research and development. (“Now pay attention, 007!”) The process for getting new unmanned capabilities to Canadian first responders will be slower and steadier. As Chief Michael Nolan says, “We do need a political champion and we need a willing bureaucrat.” 

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Richard Bray is FrontLine’s Senior Writer.

© FrontLine Security 2015

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Sensor Networks
A Poor Fit For Legacy IT Security Designs
TYSON MACAULAY
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

Sensor networks are not born of the Internet. They are not intended to exist on the Internet and they possess unique security requirements compared to systems and service found on the Internet. For instance, sensor networks will frequently be composed of “constrained” devices: low power, low processing, low memory, and as a by-product of the first 3, low security capabilities. Therefore, sensors will posses vulnerabilities that “regular” internet denizen-devices will not: sensitivity to malicious traffic of all types, and even to sensitivity to merely unexpected or unscheduled data traffic.

As a result, the security of sensor network will often be a matter of applying mitigating security controls in places other than the end-point sensor-device itself.

What are the options? A new control point for sensor networks. Historically, IT architecture could be divided into 3 main parts: end-point devices (desktops/laptops – even phones), network (LAN, WAN, Internet) and Data Centre / Cloud (central applications servers and data stores).

In the emerging Internet of Things (IoT) which in many ways is combining sensor and industrial networks with the Internet, and new architectural element is being promoted from a mere detail to a significant and important security asset – the “gateway”.

For our purposes, a “gateway” is a device that sits on the border between one domain on control and another, or between one physical network an another. A gateway can either transparent to traffic, or it might perform some sort of translation function – like network address translation or protocol translation.

Gateways can be a variety of different devices in a sensor or IoT network, especially carrier networks. Figure 1 illustrates the placement of diversity of devices that are essentially gateways in a large carrier network. By convention, the router at the edge of an Enterprise network might be broadly called a “gateway” by IT and security staff alike; however, there are many other devices which perform gateway functions. Internet service providers put gateways into homes. Wireless service providers have gateways which allow data to flow from radio networks to fixed line network to support mobile data. Many existing sensor and machine networks use gateways to convert from backhaul network-technology to “last hop” protocols which the sensors and machine understand. Increasing, enterprises are installing their own wireless gateways which connect mobile phones to small, localized “base stations” called femtocells or picocells, to offload data traffic (and tariffs) to local networks.

Typically, most gateways are “dumb”. They route or switch data without any form of treatment; but, that was how they were designed. This condition will not be good enough for sensor networks in the future, or the IoT.

Assuming the sensor device is constrained, and the DC/cloud is too remote to provide mitigating controls, then system designers and risk managers alike will start looking at the first relatively powerful element in the sensor network after the sensor itself: the gateway.

One approach is represented by the concept of “white networks”; white as in “clean and pure”.

White networks will be a matter of allowing only very prescribed sensor traffic to and from a sensor or IoT device. A white network is like application whitelisting (where only specifically allowed software may start and stop on desktops, devices and servers), but for networking: only explicitly allowed ports, protocols, sources, destinations, frequencies, volumes and possibly even application payloads and time-of-day, are allowed. (This list could even be extended to empirical criteria like environmental conditions, for instance, rain versus sun). Everything else is denied and sets off alarms.

The most effective place to apply white networking principles is at the point closest to the sensor device: the gateway. The gateway because it can monitor and control not only the traffic coming from the larger network to the end point device (sensor), but also from other surrounding sensors that may need to communicate directly due to latency restrictions.

In contrast to a “white network”, we could assess the regular Internet as “black” - filthy, full of attacks and threats and no place for a small, simple, cheap sensor device which were never engineered for the open ocean of the internet. Most home and small business networks are probably dark grey – unhygienic at best and usually poorly protected; enterprise networks are “ash” – not clean but run as a balance of risk and cost; and perhaps the best military-grade networks are off-white: because there really is no such thing as pure networks. This illustrates the conditions of today’s network environments that sensors will need to be capable of surviving in. The assumption is that even with good resources it is very difficult to segregate a sensor network and keep it “clean”, and if the sensors are going into domestic or small business environments, all bets are off.

It is a hallmark of many type of sensor and industrial device and that they are fragile: they do not respond well to “internet-like” conditions such as regular or occasional network probes and scans by adjacent devices, or seemingly random increases or decreased in traffic volumes, latency and packet loss. Many sensor systems will see degraded network services as a service failure – a very different situation from what most users and applications expect from the internet. Many industrial services will fail or become unpredictable in performance if subjected to even mild forms of reconnaissance or attack over the network.

Similarly, the exploding range of sensors coming onto the IoT will mean likely that the incidence of defective and poorly engineered sensors and devices will increase are manufacturers strive to create the best and cheapest products: expect the result to be defective or poorly made devices entering sensors networks and generating excess or malformed network traffic to the point of making the network unusable. Another affect of large numbers of devices coming on the sensor network will be that some will not be properly secured physically, and will become platforms for unauthorized access my the curiously and malicious. They will become back doors and side doors into the sensors networks and applications. In other cases, administrative errors in network management will see logically differentiated and segregated networks accidentally combined, or linked – with traffic from one “polluting” the other, with uncertain impacts on these fragile networks.

Another aspect of sensor networks in the IoT is that they will increasing support critically sensitive, cyber-physical, logical-kinetic interfaces: information collected from sensors will be used to manage the real world. In these instances, the potential for an IT security issue to manifest as physical harm and damage becomes very real. Already we are seeing instances of the potential criticality of the logical-kinetic interface and the hard that can result from insecure and fragile networks and devices. (See the story about failed in-home, IP-based security systems, or IP-based utilities).

In this piece we focused on growing important of gateways in sensor network security design, and the concept of white networking as a technique that is both effective and efficient.

White networks are highly antiseptic, and a value-added service which might be offered by carriers or service providers. They will need to be configured for the IoT services in question – so they will not be a commodity. And they will need to be established and managed carefully. But, once established they should run and provide substantial assurance in an automated manner.

Security-enabled gateways will also play a role beyond white networking. Aside from the concept of white network, expect that gateways will be required to assume a wide range of security functions that might normally be supported by more powerful devices themselves:

  • The gateway will be important for access control, identification and “bootstrapping” of sensors and other devices as they are deployed and provisioned directly into the field from manufacturers.
  • The gateway will support cryptographic functions on behalf of sensors and other devices too constrained to apply confidentiality safeguards.

For a deep discussion related to security and risk of sensors and the IoT, see an up-coming book called “RIOT Control” where we list several dozen examples of IoT use-cases, and security implications.

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Tyson Macaulay is VP Global Telecom­munications Strategy at McAfee, Part of Intel Security.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Barriers to Implementing Strategic Direction
DAVID WAITS
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)


Strategy is a framework within which decisions are made, which influences the nature and direction of the business. Strategy directs organizations as they make plans, marshal resources and make day-to-day decisions. It is imperative that strategy is clear, concise and congruent; otherwise, organizations and people can be “efficiently” headed the wrong way. Companies lacking a clear, memorable, embraced strategy will struggle with implementation, thwart tactical execution, and blunt their own effectiveness. Take prudence to avoid these barriers to implementing strategic direction.

Barrier: Strategy that is too lofty and non-pragmatic
Head in the Clouds?
Many times, the strategic direction sounds good on paper but it is way too lofty. It is not pragmatic. A direction that is not pragmatic will not move people to action. Vision is a compelling picture of a future state that inspires people to perform. Strategic direction needs to be wrapped into that vision so that it gets off of the paper, off of the posters and out into the trenches where people work. This will start the process of getting the desired results. It is the direction, not intentions, that determines your organization’s ultimate destiny.

 

Barrier: Overly focused on immediacy
Now, Now, Now!
Because of the incredibly fast pace of business in today’s world, it is easy for leaders to get preoccupied with the immediate and urgent things that are in front of them and lose sight of their main outcomes and objectives. Like the story of the little boy trying to put his finger in the dike, leaders can get caught up in moving from one emergency to the next, to the next, to the next. The immediacy of the next report or the next meeting keeps leaders from making sure that they pull back and stay focused on where they want to go. A strong strategy provides the framework for effective decisions.

Barrier: Doing what we like to do
But, I Like It…
The third barrier that keeps leaders from implementing strategic direction is the trap of getting wrapped up in doing the things leaders like to do instead of the things the strategic direction is calling for. Think of it this way, if the strategic direction could talk, what would it be asking to be done today? The answer to this question will determine decisions, establish proper priorities and clarify the next appropriate step to take. Leaders should only be focused on task no one else can do. If someone else can do the task, delegate it, monitor the outcomes, make appropriate corrections and celebrate progress.

Barrier: Lack of congruency at the top, and commitment from the middle
Congruency & Commitment
It is important to have buy-in from the middle. Many postulate that leadership starts at the top, maintaining that what is at the top filters down. There is certainly truth in that axiom, however, without buy-in from mid-level leadership, implementation of the direction will be thwarted and ultimately blocked. It is important to have congruence at the top, so as a senior leadership group, there is a clarion message that is common to all top leaders. Otherwise, there will be mixed messages being sent.

When there is a commitment at the middle level, with congruency from the top, the lower level of leadership will help catapult strategy into success.

Barrier: Not reviewing often enough
The Blinding Fog
The last barrier that impairs consistent implementation is caused simply by not revisiting the strategy consistently. The consequence of this lack of continual review results in a loss of focus creating the calamity of operating in a dense fog. If strategic direction is not kept front and center, the forward driving force of the implementation is forfeited. Organizations and people move towards what they are focused on. Without this regular focus on strategic direction, efficient and effective implementation is impeded, if not stopped altogether.  

Strategy implementation can be a long process. To implement strategic direction, first pinpoint clear messaging that is vibrant, specific and memorable. If implementation is going to be embraced and enacted, marketing your message internally to your team to facilitate buy-in from top to bottom is a critical necessity. Secondly, identify tangible milestones. Have definable indicators of the targeted results of each step of implementation and build in accountability measures for each milestone.

Thirdly, capture memories along the way to record the progress from where you started to where you are now. Many parents periodically mark a door frame or chart, capturing the growth history of their children because it’s so easy to miss both the subtle and the dramatic development of each child. Do the same in business – chart steps, set-backs, solutions and victories throughout the process as a reminder of the progress you have made. Looking back at successes brings hope as you move through challenges in the future.

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David Waits, founder of Waits Consulting Group, helps his clients create a thriving organizational environment that facilitates rapid growth, innovative development and on-going profitability.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Innovation & Simulation
RICHARD BRAY
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 3)

For instance, during some winter test flights near Quebec City, Dr. George Leblanc and his team discovered a new and unexpected ability to get important data from recently disturbed snow. 

“Quite honestly, this was one of those things that just fell into our laps,” he told FrontLine. After imaging human footsteps in snow during one test flight, they scanned the same place the next day, after a snowfall. “When we analyzed the data, we found that some tracks in the snow were really prominent. They were disturbed tracks, but there were many other disturbed tracks as well.” In fact, the difference between the tracks was time. The more prominent ones had been laid down later than the originals. “When we went back to the people who were laying out the targets they said ‘oh yes those were the tracks we laid last night’.” As Dr. Leblanc said, “It was one of those things that doesn’t happen very often in science. It was a big, red bull's-eye.”

The benefit for Search And Rescue operations during the Canadian winter is clear. To focus on the most recent path could allow searchers to eliminate false leads. Dr. Leblanc is careful to explain that the capability is still in the very early stages of development. “It shows promise but it isn’t ready for prime time. It still has to be put into an operational context,” he says. “We still need to do a lot of research on it, but what we have done so far is a nice case because we basically had a snowfall in between, so it was nice and new, and it actually worked out really, really well.” 

It is one thing for a team of scientists to demonstrate a capability but it could be a long time before it is available to first responders. The technology supporting the application is available, and it could even be scaled down to a usable size for real world applications but, not surprisingly, cost is an obstacle. “The technology is there for these smaller, lighter, faster things,” Dr. Leblanc says, “they’re just expensive.”

Parallel developments of the technology for commercial applications could eventually deliver the capability to the first responder community. “That being said, there is no reason why there can’t be private entrepreneurs who develop similar technologies that can be called in,” he suggests. “It’s a model that sometimes works, and for the first responder community, you don’t have to invest in this technology, you just call it in, really. It is expensive technology.” 

Perfecting the capability will require time, money and leadership. “It is one of those things that has to find a home,” he says. “It has proven to be quite difficult, actually, to find a home where we can properly package it up and do a little more research.” So, has Leblanc been talking to producers from CSI: Nunavut? “No, not yet,” he laughs. 

While Leblanc’s research focuses on the outdoors, his colleague Dr. Steven Gwynne looks at human behaviour inside buildings and other enclosed spaces – the factors that influence evacuee and responder performance. He examines people movement, particularly evacuation and pedestrian dynamics. “basically it’s about how people move in and around structures, given that they have a location to get to and tasks to perform.” 

During their careers, most first responders will encounter situations where groups or individuals are confronted with situations in which they need to escape. Understanding such behaviour could allow emergency personnel to make better decisions about evacuation. “This kind of research leads to safer environments,” he says. 

For example, law enforcement was one of the first groups to recognize the value of simulated weapons training such as offered by Meggitt Training Systems of Quebec, where whey can train for everything from basic marksmanship to use-of-force scenarios in a safe environment. 

“We look at it under different scenarios. It could be under a safety scenario, like an emergency evacuation. How long did it take someone to get from a position in the building to a place of safety? Or it could be part of a normal operation, so how long did it take people to get around a shopping mall, given that they wanted to visit locations? Or it could be a security procedure. How long did it take people to get through a checkpoint or how long do we expect the queues to be, given that new procedures are always being put in place.”

A large part of Dr. Gwynne’s work involves using simulation tools to quantify human performance, to model how long it would take someone to get to a place of safety or how long it takes to get through a new security checkpoint. “The value of those numbers or those times or those insights is certainly apparent to emergency responders, but it also has value for people like designers and engineers,” he said. “So, for instance, if you are designing an airport how could you improve that design, given the time it takes to evacuate to a place of safety or given the time it takes to get through the airport during a time of normal operations or indeed through security.” A safety manager in a facility that is looking to invest in a new notification system, or develop a new procedure, would look to simulation tools to provide evidence to support a business case. “If you can quantify performance, it doesn’t answer the question for you, but it does provide evidence that support answers to the question.” 

NRC scientists are using the simulation tools to examine both the procedures that are identified, the safety operations and security, and the interaction between them. “This is where these tools become particularly useful,” Dr. Gwynne explains. “At an airport, you have obvious security procedures in place and there are obvious safety measures in place. There are procedures to evacuate or to get people to safety, should an incident occur. But it is also important to see how these things interact, how the changes in one procedure might influence another.” For instance, what works well during normal operations might break down in a heightened state of security, or changes in the structure may mean the emergency evacuation procedure should also be updated. 

“These tools don’t provide the answer, but they allow you to investigate questions, and they produce evidence that can then be either handed off or used as part of an analysis that helps uncover an answer.”

Simulation tools allow a range of decision makers to look at a range of different scenarios that might not be possible to study using the standard tests that involve testing with real people in different environments. “Sometimes you can’t put people in the situations that are of interest because of ethical concerns or because the facility is in constant use, like an airport. Some of these tools do allow you to experiment and come up with evidence for a particular position given that the tool itself is credible and produces reasonable results based on testing and validation.” 

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Richard Bray is FrontLine’s Senior Writer.
Photos courtesy of the National Research Council of Canada

© FrontLine Security 2015

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Waging "War" Against the Cyber Threat
JAMES NORRIE
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

For generations, academics in the fields of philosophy, linguistics, communications and culture have debated the nuances of metaphor and rhetoric. But for those of us with an interest in the realm of cyber security and its proper practice, perhaps the more important question on which to dwell lies in determining when our use of a metaphor simply becomes the rhetoric?

At the crux of globally important issues, we find that public debate matters. Yet public debate too often occurs in an information vacuum – such as when a minimally-informed audience’s surface understanding of a metaphor or analogy hampers a truer, deeper understanding of the phenomenon itself. And so this article poses and begins to answer a provocative question: “What is the value of using a war metaphor to stoke public debate about cyber security?” I argue in three steps that the war metaphor, while provocative and tantalizing to some, may be detrimental to understanding the complex social and legal issues related to cyber conflict, and especially insider threat, that get overshadowed by the use of the term “war”.

To begin, let’s dissect the common vernacular of various metaphors used to define cyber security concepts. For instance, the term “cyberspace”, already embedded in the popular lexicon for a decade or so already implies a geophysical metaphor. For that matter, so does the phrase “the web”. Over time, we began to avail ourselves of other useful geophysical metaphors in discussing the “domain” we work in: “building a moat” around our systems or talking about “barriers to entry” and “back doors” and such; we didn’t want to “open the floodgates” to the bad actors; and Michael Wynne, in his capacity as U.S. Air Force Secretary, announced in 2006 that: “cyberspace is a domain in which the Air Force flies and fights”.

These early analogies helped the public understand effective cyber security regimes as mostly focused on protecting a “place” or “space” from unauthorized access. This initial geophysical metaphor applied because early efforts (pre-cloud, mostly) often included physical infrastructure security and information systems security as inter-related efforts. Such metaphors also seemed to simplify the virtual network complexity we were tasked with striving to protect, rendering it understandable. But it may also have over-simplified many of those same concepts in the mind’s eye, perhaps making the total effort seem deceptively simple.

As our security efforts improved to accommodate the increasingly complex nature of technical architecture, and as new global information security threats emerged, the geophysical metaphor was far too simplistic and incomplete. And so we turned to the world of science for help in describing this shift. The result: we were now dealing with “contagions” – “things were going viral” and we started to perform systems “health checks”. We needed to protect our systems from “viruses” by “cleansing” them and using “anti-virus” software to remain “infection-free”. We used “penetration tests” to detect “weakness” and “points of entry” into our systems and we began to practice “safe computing”. Almost instantly, the conceptual intrusion of the biomedical metaphor was complete. We had again prevailed in persuading the greater public that the systems-related protection tasks we undertake were as complex, serious and important as protecting their own health was – and worth significantly higher investments of time, energy and costs by organizations as a result.

One recent survey had these organizational costs growing in excess of 17% this year and has done so for consecutive years. Again, this newer and more expansive metaphor seemed apt, and had a larger purpose and value for us. Yet it wasn’t long before it too seemed incomplete, lacking the ability to capture intent.

A virus, while inherently aggressive, still emerges from nature and spreads biologically through organic mechanisms to enable disease and, perhaps, death. But a computer virus is not that: it is computer code that has been manipulatively created by humans to disrupt or destroy systems, often in intriguingly targeted ways. This suggests the biomedical metaphor was also incomplete; as any chosen metaphor likely is. It could not adequately explain a deliberately aggressive act, not associated with nature itself but derived from the deliberately threatening posture and actions of a perceived enemy. And so, the hunt for a new metaphor was underway.

Cyber professionals then began embracing a war analogy to describe our work world. They made a case for “digital warfare” with “nation states” promoting “cyber terrorism” and lawless “bad actors” engaging in “offensive cyber” with the sole intent of destroying our way of life. There is “threat escalation” to contend with, and corporate “war rooms” to repel “coordinated attacks”, and apparently new “cyber weapons” being born in top secret labs by the government-endorsed military-industrial complex. There seems no end to the positioning of this latest metaphor in the natural trajectory of the public debate about cyber security, and many important public constituencies believe we are now engaged in a cyber war. Are we?

Is this leap of logic appropriate, and this metaphor helpful to our cause of securing our digital activity? I suggest not in its entirety. One wonders if such inflammatory rhetoric isn’t mostly self-serving in our quest to satiate an appetite for increased professional importance.

No doubt we can all agree that a “clear and present” online danger exists; but it is debatable if that translates to being “at war”. Let’s examine this more carefully: it is true that cyber weapons exist and have already been used offensively. A good example is the July 2010, “attack” of a nuclear facility in Iran by a computer virus called Stuxnet. Although no responsibility was ever admitted to, it was widely suspected to be “act of cyber war” by the either the U.S. or Israeli governments (or both). Neither of these countries was at war with Iran, so the attack was, at best, sabotage or subversive, but does not meet any traditional definition of warfare.

Historically, acts of war were politically motivated and perpetuated by nations against each other, and were transparently authorized and publicly undertaken. In addition, “war” always involved killing opponents. Were the adversaries “at war” in the Stuxnet case? Or was this act, while admittedly an authorized covert effort, more properly characterized as cyber espionage, subversion or sabotage instead?

Looking at conflict in the 21st century, we have to realize that much of the violence today is unconventional, meaning it is not nation against nation with inherent “rules of engagement” but instead groups of radicals that are often difficult to identify such as terror sleeper cells around the world, or radicals hiding in plain sight among peaceful civilians. Such attackers exploit the weaknesses of those they oppose, and society’s near-total dependence on cyber connectivity has made it an appealing target for disruption. Terrorism is thus a better description for these acts than traditional Warfare.

Online efforts to spread propaganda, court public opinion, and to recruit to a cause, appear to be a current rendition of typical war tactics, but their more insidious motive is terror and chaos, for which the term “cyber terrorism” is more accurate. These literal distinctions are critical because times of war demands ruthless, exceptional activity that often suspends the rule of law. But espionage and subversion are – they are quite unexceptional actually.

Consider the defensive side of cyber: the Chinese have built entire systems to “protect” themselves from the free flow of information, which they perceive as “threatening” their society’s stability. Many would draw parallels to defensive weapons systems, but again, there may be a flaw in this analogy because this is an attempt to restrict flows of information, regardless of the country of origin and not specifically tied to any one nation or set of nations in conflict.

More frightening, and perhaps the reason our field initially leaned towards adopting a war metaphor, is that the motives of the actors involved have changed. While the intent of cyber hackers was primarily economic gain through theft of intellectual property or online digital assets, we now see political, religious and other activist motives for cyber interruptions. What happens when the purpose of a conflict is not to win a war but to continuously wreak damage? This would call forth the less inflammatory but more accurate metaphor of “cyber terror”.

Questions arise when we extend this idea: for instance, when countries like China willingly lend state-sponsored assets to local efforts designed to steal economically valuable information from private companies, why shouldn’t western nations do the same? But practically speaking, what if that descends into governments helping its national companies steal corporate secrets from companies in other nations? What would this new cyber regiment look like politically and practically? So many questions…

While the nuances of these positions are clear to those charged with national security who regularly identify a growing list of nation states supporting, directly and indirectly, efforts to attack private and government computer networks, perhaps we are missing an important point. It may be more crucial that these definitional nuances are understood by our all-important broader public constituency if we want to address the real looming cyber threats to come.

The war analogy, while having some utility descriptively, would seem to tilt the public perception once again toward the presence of definable external threats with clear geopolitical motives and our need to vigilantly guard against them, winning at our expense.

But, as most of us have come to realize, the bigger and growing threat we face is not an external threat but rather an internal one – from a trusted insider. Does this mean we are at war with ourselves? This risk arises from sophisticated social engineering efforts, especially related to ethno-centric, religious and cultural targeting of like insiders to corrupt cyber security practices. There is no doubt that many groups will use any tactic to accomplish their objectives and that their conduct, whether online or not, is supporting terrorism rather than oft-stated loftier goals such as gaining or protecting religious freedom.

This intentional disrespect for the rule of international law may actually be the act of war. And the analysis of that dilemma most often leads to the uncomfortable conclusion that international counter-measures are necessary in order to prevail against these tactics. But do any of us believe an offensive cyber war alone could ever be a path to victory in such a situation? Or is the use of offensive cyber tactics only a potent adjunct to a multi-faceted war that any nation or hostile group might declare and execute?

So we are clearly not at war in cyberspace in any traditional sense. Can you imagine the resulting public outcry and outrage that would arise if an organization actively decided to use ethnic, racial or religious criteria to profile their employee base as a way to counteract the rising threat of social engineering by those same targets to harm us from the inside out? What if individual religious affiliation were seen as an inherent employment risk factor to be actively explored during the hiring process? This is an almost unimaginable conversation to have in many countries where notions of political correctness prevent meaningful conversation, not to mention that civil rights and HR laws in most countries prohibit any open use of such tactics. Yet those national laws cannot prevent the use of nefarious and seditious tactics against us offensively by others. If we were “technically” at war, would this loosen our range of response?

But we are not at war and so we can’t respond in kind. And caution demands that a thoughtful, transparent public debate must occur – and soon – to answer questions such as: What practical, legal, and ethical boundaries should govern the actions of cyber professionals globally?

I believe the metaphors we choose professionally, and the rhetoric it creates, should be more nuanced and less inflammatory so that we get the result we all want: a truly safer online world. My theory is that this will only happen with educated public debate and coherent national action, and we can help or hinder that effort individually and collectively with a more considered and nuanced use of metaphoric language that, while perhaps still provocative, is also accurate.  

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James Norrie is the Dean of Business and Justice Studies at Utica College in NY, which has the only dually-accredited cyber security & cyber crime programs in the United States.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Critical Infrastructure
Protection to Resilience
PHILIP J. BOYLE
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

Despite its ambitious mission, will the revived National Strategy for Critical Infrastructure be able to sidestep long-standing problems associated with private sector ownership of critical infrastructure and the limits of emergency management in a federal system that may undermine it’s effectiveness while also raising fresh questions regarding the strategic concept of resilience?

In 2009, Public Safety Canada released the long-awaited National Strategy for Critical Infrastructure. A product of extended consultation between federal, provincial and territorial governments and private sector stakeholders, the National Strategy and it’s associated Action Plans (2009 & 2014) are a renewed attempt on the part of the federal government to develop a comprehensive framework to address the challenges of critical infrastructure (CI) security. Traditionally a matter of civil defense against military threats, the Strategy seeks to establish an all-hazard framework to mitigate complex and unpredictable risks facing Canada’s physical and cyber CI today.

The National Strategy defined critical infrastructure as “processes, systems, facilities, technologies, networks, assets and services essential to the health, safety, security or economic well-being of Canadians and the effective functioning of government.” While the term ‘critical infrastructure’ is relatively new, the protection of assets such as industrial facilities, transportation hubs, or power grids has been a longstanding problem for any modern nation state. In Canada, the protection of such assets has historically come under the purview of the Vital Points Program. First initiated in 1938 by the federal government, the Program sought to catalogue all key infrastructure assets essential to protecting Canada’s industrial capacity during times of war and, as the Cold War progressed, aid in the continuity of government in the event of a nuclear attack.

The Vital Points Program was initially administered by the (then) Department of Justice but was transferred in 1949 to the Department of National Defence, and then to the Emergency Measures Organization in 1960, which itself was reconfigured into Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada (PSEPC) in 1981 and then renamed to Public Safety Canada in 2003.

The main features of the Vital Points Program remained fairly consistent throughout this history. The program was managed by an inter-departmental steering committee composed of various federal departments, each of which would recommend public or private facilities from within their respective portfolios for inclusion on a list of vital points known as the Vital Points Ledger.

The Ledger itself was divided into three categories according to a scoring system devised by the interdepartmental committee and administered by the RCMP. According to the 1991 Vital Points disruption of operations in a Category I facility would have a “disastrous effect upon the security and continued efficient functioning of the country.” Disruption of Category II and III facilities (which could overlap provincially-maintained Vital Points Ledgers), are described as able to “seriously affect” or “adversely affect” the security and efficient functioning of the country.

The RCMP was to maintain and ongoing regime of consultation and inspection for all listed vital points, and assume direct responsibility for the protection of Category I vital points during national emergencies under direction from Cabinet.

The Vital Points Program was a product of concerns unique to the geopolitics of the WWII and Cold War era – the sabotage of vital points by enemy operatives on Canadian soil ranked particularly high as a threat to be protected against. In this context, and as noted by Martin Rudner in a paper published in the International Journal (2009), the Vital Points Program constituted a regime of physical protection in which “guards, gates, and guns” assumed a prominent role.

A 1988 review of the Vital Points Program on behalf of Emergency Preparedness Canada (the lead department of the program at the time), concluded that this protective approach had clear shortcomings – even if the RCMP were able to discharge its duties mandated under the program. In light of the “staggering” number of vital points on the federal Vital Points Ledger that had been listed by 1988, the review concluded that the changing nature of foreseeable threats, including the emergence of “computer crime” and “mass destruction terror,” required a “radical change in thinking,” yet found “little evidence of such change permeating the Vital Points Program.”

Changes
The review recommended that Emergency Preparedness Canada forgo seeking to specify “precise arrangements for a specific crisis situation” in favor of fostering an “ongoing state of good security” across public and private sectors that blended protective measures with contingency management and crisis response that would be “generally applicable and adaptable to any crisis scenario.” In this framework, Emergency Preparedness Canada would function less as a guarantor of protection in favour of taking on the role of a coordinator of efforts and champion of best practices for the public and private actors directly responsible for managing their own ‘ongoing state of good security.’

In 1993 a PSEPC Report to Parliament stated that the Vital Points Program was under review in order to “bring it in line with the changing international situation,” however, no public record of the program exists after that time.

The Y2K problem renewed concerns for the security of vital systems – under the new moniker of critical infrastructure – leading to development of the current National Strategy, which is broadly congruent with the recommendations of the 1988 Vital Points review.

Most notably, the defensive stance underpinned by the Vital Points Program has given way to all-hazards resilience in the National Strategy in which fostering the capacity of private sector owners of CI to ‘bounce forward’ from disruptive events (regardless of their initial cause), is the strategic focus.

This shift from protection to resilience is a two-part recognition that disruptive events come in many forms, and that not all disruptive events can be prevented. The hierarchical nature of the vital points committees and the taxonomical Vital Points Ledger have been replaced in the National Strategy by industry-specific forums and a national cross-sector forum convened by Public Safety Canada that are composed of government regulators, private sector partners, and industry associations intended to be participatory in nature.

With responsibility for the resilience of privately owned critical assets in the hands of owner-operators, the RCMP now focuses on providing intelligence support and investigative capacity to private sector owners through the National Critical Infrastructure Team since 2002.

The National Strategy thus seeks to foster a distributed and open-ended condition of readiness within the private sector to not only prevent infrastructural failures from occurring but to nurture the resilience to adapt and recover from failure – this is a marked departure from the regime of physical fortification sought by the Vital Points Program.

Nonetheless, while understanding of the nature of contemporary threats to CI, and recognizing that strategic methods of response have clearly changed, the National Strategy has, so far, been unable to escape two long-standing structural issues that will continue to limit its effectiveness if they do not receive careful consideration.

Trust and Sharing
The first limitation of the National Strategy is that participation in the sector networks and national cross-sector networks by private industry is voluntary. This has wide-ranging implications on the critical issue of information sharing. With the large majority of infrastructural assets privately owned, sharing of information on threats, vulnerabilities, and preparedness measures between businesses and with government is critical. However, the need to share information is often at odds with competitive pressures between firms and a general distrust from business of sharing any form of information with government.

Though the development of non-disclosure agreements and other instruments of confidentiality can aid the flow of information between government and the private sector, the voluntary nature of the relationships involved mean that trust between private sector partners and government plays a crucial role in enabling information exchange.

The corollary of this is that information exchange will be severely inhibited should trust between partners degrade due to information breaches or ill-conceived actions on the part of government regulators that appear to foist costly obligations on the private sector, which in turn will undermine the willingness of private actors to participate.

An early glimpse at these difficulties is found in correspondence between the Commissioner of the RCMP and the Secretary of the Interdepartmental Committee on Vital Points in 1949. In updating the committee on aspects of a survey of vital points being conducted by the RCMP at the time, the Commissioner requested clarification on the federal supervision of privately owned facilities because “these are private concerns and the question of cost is involved.” The Secretary of the Interdepartmental Committee on Vital Points agreed, acknowledging, that “the matter requires careful consideration” as “it might be difficult to implement this program without unduly exciting private industry.

With the majority of CI assets owned privately – estimates range from 80-90% – trust between stakeholders will play as vital role today as it did in 1949. The ongoing work to enhance infrastructure resilience taking place within the National Strategy needs to maintain this trust if it is to be successful.

Municipal Non-engagement
The second limitation of the National Strategy is that municipalities are largely excluded from the framework. As ‘creatures of the provinces,’ cities have historically been disconnected from the federal and provincial structures responsible for emergency management. Disappointingly, this exclusion has been reproduced within the National Strategy – it does not allow municipalities to participate as equal partners in the sector-specific or national cross-sector networks.

Canadian municipalities are consequently shut out from the networks of information that are exchanged and fostered by the National Strategy, with potentially dire results. A prominent lighting rod for these concerns is the shipment of dangerous goods by rail through Canadian cities. Pointing to the risks posed for local populations and first responders should a derailment occur, municipal leaders have long protested the lack of information provided about shipments of dangerous goods through city boundaries.

During consultations in the development of the National Strategy, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities urged Public Safety Canada to enable municipalities to engage as partners of equal standing with other levels of government in the sector-specific and national cross-sector forum, yet municipalities were ultimately excluded in the final version of the Strategy. As major owners/operators of a significant proportion of critical infrastructure and providers of first responders during times of crises, Canadian municipalities need greater representation within the sector and cross-sector forums if greater infrastructure resiliency is to be achieved.

Resilience
A final reservation about the National Strategy concerns the embrace of resilience as a strategic concept for CI security. The concept of resilience is notably absent from pre-2007 public safety and emergency preparedness reviews such as the three volumes of National Emergencies: Canada’s Front Lines released by the Senate Standing Committee on National Security & Defence, and Securing an Open Society released by the Privy Council Office, both in 2004.

It was not until 2007 that resilience was defined in the Emergency Management Framework as “the capacity of a system, community or society to adapt to disturbances resulting from hazards by persevering, recuperating or changing to reach and maintain an acceptable level of functioning,” yet by 2009 this hitherto peripheral concept was entrenched as the Strategic Outcome of Public Safety Canada in it’s 2008-2009 Report on Plans & Priorities.

Given its rapid embrace in the fields of public safety and emergency preparedness in general, and in critical infrastructure security in particular, it is necessary to reflect on the nature of the concept itself.

Resilience is often touted as a response to the problem of unpredictable and potentially catastrophic crises that complex systems can generate (so-called ‘black swan’ events or ‘wicked risks’). Tightly coupled and interdependent critical infrastructure systems and the problem of cascading infrastructural failures are material forms of these concerns. It is no surprise, then, that some of the first articulations of resilience in government discourse in Canada – notably the 2004 and 2005 Departmental Performance Reports of PSEPC – were in relation to the problem of CI security.

While it is sensible to advocate for greater preparedness to unexpected events on the part of critical infrastructure owner/operators as well as on the part of individuals, families, communities, and society as a whole, resilience as a concept contains an in-built fatalism that says we cannot prevent catastrophic events from occurring but can only adapt to their effects. In turn, this fatalism precludes appreciating how factors such as government deregulation or corporate risk taking may ‘set the stage’ for future worst-case scenarios, as well as the unequal socio-economic distribution of exposure to infrastructural failure.

Today’s enthusiasm for resilience in the field of critical infrastructure and business continuity tends to remove these factors from our understanding of the political economics of a catastrophe in favour of accepting them as inevitable outcomes of living in a world of complexity – which sidelines questions about the causes and consequences of catastrophe. Resilience as a principle of emergency management is useful, yet the valourization of resilience as a cure-all for complex risks needs to be guarded against.

Protecting the Future
The Vital Points Program was introduced to protect the industrial capacity of Canada to wage war and aid the survival of the nation in the worst-case scenario of a nuclear attack. Critical infrastructure security today addresses a much more amorphous set of anxieties about malicious attacks, major accidents, and natural disasters, all of which are exponentially complicated by the digital interconnectedness of today’s infrastructures.

The National Strategy is a response to these concerns, yet the long-standing problems identified above require ongoing attention and, with respect to municipal involvement, structural changes to the National Strategy if it is to be successful.

The embrace of resilience poses concerns of a different nature. Championed as a strategy for managing complex risks yet serving to naturalize the political and economic sources of complexity, we may eventually find that what we really want is protection from resilience.

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Phil Boyle is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology & Legal Studies at the University of Waterloo. The author acknowledges the financial support of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Insight Development Grant no. 430-2014-00690 for the research contained in this article.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Managing global infectious disease threats
The Role of the Veterinary Community
DR SHANE RENWICK
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 3)

The health of a country’s animal population – including livestock, companion animals and wildlife – represents a critical link in supporting public health, healthy ecosystems, economic well-being and the safety and security of the population. Recent trends in globalization of trade and travel, environmental disturbances, political instability and climate change create opportunities for the emergence and spread of disease from animals to humans. Veterinarians work on the interface between humans and animals and therefore play a major role in mitigating such disease threats. Consequently, the world veterinary community must be engaged as a key partner with public health and safety and security sectors to protect vulnerable human populations and safeguard the food supply. 

Infectious Disease Threats around the Globe
Over the centuries, human and animal health have been challenged by outbreaks of infectious diseases. Though major technological advances have improved our ability to prevent, detect and control disease, we are still faced with significant threats from often highly contagious diseases caused by viruses, bacteria and other highly adaptable agents. 

What may be surprising to many, is that about 75 % of new, emerging diseases of animals, including those with pandemic and/or bio-terrorism potential, can infect humans. Many such diseases (collectively referred to as “zoonoses”) have emerged in distant parts of the world, sometimes as a result of humans interfacing in new ways with wildlife and domestic livestock populations and their associated disease agents. Others have appeared much closer to home or have found their way to our doorstep as result of factors such as international travel and trade, movement of wildlife, smuggling, genetic change among disease agents and indirect effects of climate change – for example, changing insect and tick populations allowing for the spread of certain agents in new regions. 

Recent examples of diseases that have had direct or indirect impact on the health of Canadians and the economy have included West Nile Virus (WNV) in the 1990s, bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in 2003, sudden acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2003, influenza A virus (pH1N1) in pigs in 2009, several outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza in domestic poultry over the past decade, and Lyme disease that is spread by ticks and whose range is expanding in North America. 

According to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE)

  • 60% of human pathogens are of animal origin.
  • 75% of emerging animal 
  • diseases can be transmitted 
  • to humans.
  • 1 emerging disease occurs every 8 months.
  • Many of these disease-causing agents have the potential to be used as agents for bioterrorism.

Recently, the outbreak of Ebola virus in Africa has driven home the point that agents originating from animals, as Ebola did, can spread to humans and now quickly across oceans or continents and, at the very least, provoke fear and uncertainty among large portions of the population, and at worst, can result in death, disability, civil disruption and displacement of citizens.

Some disease agents do not affect people, such as the virus that causes ‘foot and mouth’, but outbreaks can have devastating consequences for food production, tourism, trade and the economy – as was the case in the 2001 outbreak in the UK which resulted in over 10B Euro in damage, animal suffering and untold mental anguish to citizens who lost their livelihoods. So far, while Canada has suffered some negative consequences from disease outbreaks in animals, it has largely been spared catastrophic impacts that can result from natural, accidental or intentional introduction of infectious agents. Nevertheless the potential for serious outbreaks of disease remains, and constant vigilance is required.

The Global Community
The standards of the World Organization for Animal Health (www.OIE.int) are recognized by the World Trade Organization (WTO) as the reference for international sanitary rules. They are prepared by elected commissions and working groups that bring together internationally renowned scientists – most of whom are experts within the global network of about 300 Collaborating Centres and Reference Laboratories. As one of the world’s major producers and exporters of animals and animal products (e.g. meat, genetic material, etc.) amounting to tens of billions of dollars annually, Canada has strived to be an active member and contributor to OIE in areas of scientific knowledge and animal disease information sharing, food safety and animal welfare and promotion of veterinary services globally. Canada recognizes that the global animal health system must be kept strong to protect all players. 

With respect to global public health, the OIE has developed a strategic alliance with the World Health Organization (WHO), and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, recognizing their respective responsibilities in fighting diseases (including zoonoses) that can have serious health and economic impacts. These organizations have been working together for many years to prevent, detect, control and eliminate disease risks to humans originating directly or indirectly from animals.

Canadian veterinarians in government, universities and the private sector are linked to the OIE and the global community through Canada’s OIE Delegate and Canada’s Chief Veterinary Officer, both located at the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA).

As evidence of international interest in the potential risk posed by disease agents in the current environment, OIE hosted the first Global Conference on Biological Threat Reduction in Paris on 2 July 2015. Key messages included the importance of the animal health, human health, and national security sectors working closely together to use internationally adopted standards are the basis for global infectious disease prevention and control, including early detection and rapid response to biological events whether they be of natural, accidental or intentional origin.

Canada’s Veterinary Community
Though the public most frequently associates veterinarians with companion animal practice, members of the veterinary profession and associated experts, such as veterinary technologists and technicians, occupy positions across the animal and public health domains in Canada. Private sector veterinarians work with food animal producers on the front line to support health and welfare of livestock to protect the food supply and international trade. Along with producers, they are mostly likely to be first on the scene or the first to be consulted in the event of a foreign animal disease incursion. Likewise, veterinarians in federal and provincial governments and associated laboratories conduct animal and zoonotic disease surveillance, diagnostic testing and research; formulate risk assessments and conduct epidemiological studies, surveys and analyses; and develop import and disease control policies supported by science and international. Other veterinarians work in industry and universities to support the development of new technologies and tools, such as vaccines and pharmaceuticals and to apply new scientific knowledge to enhance the management of disease risk.

Canada is fortunate to have a world class laboratory facility that puts animal and human disease diagnostics and research under one roof. Constructed in Winnipeg during the 1990s, the Canadian Science Centre for Human and Animal Health (CSCHAH) facility allows Canadian and international scientists in CFIA and the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) to collaborate on diverse high threat disease agents such as Ebola virus, influenza, and Nipah virus, to name a few. 

Veterinarians and other government scientists at CSCHAH have collaborated extensively during the past 15 years with the Department of National Defence (DND) on research in areas such as the development of rapid diagnostic tests for exotic animal diseases, development of public health and animal health intelligence and surveillance networks, and foresight studies on strengthening the animal health emergency management system. In addition, both table top and field exercises, such as the 2007 Biological Incident Exercise West (Bi-Ex West), have been organized by DND to enhance the capability of organizations such as CFIA, PHAC, DND, RCMP, Public Safety Canada and provincial and local agencies to work collaboratively to respond to bioterrorist events, situation involving a zoonotic agent or disease transmitted from animals to humans. Bi-Ex West enabled participants to strengthen their skills, improve procedures, and identify vulnerabilities. It tested the preparedness of federal experts and their ability to work with other levels of government and emergency responders. It contributed to improving national capabilities to respond to bioterrorism threats.

Given the potential for a rapid disease incursion, day-to-day preparedness is crucial to mitigate risk and minimize damage. Veterinarians are core members of inter-disciplinary emergency teams that exist in government agencies at all levels, with mandates for management of disease outbreaks. More broadly, since 2006, hundreds of Canadian veterinarians have stepped forward as volunteers to be trained the Canadian Veterinary Reserve Program (CVR) to assist federal, provincial and territorial governments in responding to large-scale emergencies in Canada affecting large numbers of animals. The CVR, which is coordinated by the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA) and supported by the CFIA, allows veterinarians to make themselves available to rapidly assist governments in responding to outbreaks of foreign animal disease and other large-scale emergencies and disasters that affect animals.

The Way Forward 
Animal health and welfare is key to all dimensions of health and security – Animal, Public, Economic, Ecosystem, Food Security. There is increasing awareness and action at the international level to strengthen alliances between animal and human health and security communities to reduce threats posed by infectious diseases. In the past, Canada has suffered from devastating losses due to infectious diseases originating in animals, however, catastrophic impacts have not, as yet resulted from animal disease outbreaks s they have in some other countries. With a new government in place, and an energetic Minister at the helm of Public Safety, now is the time for Canada to invest in emergency preparedness, strengthen expertise and provide tools to those on the frontline who are tasked with protecting Canadians from zoonotic disease threat – Canada’s veterinarians. 

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Dr. Shane Renwick is Manager of National Issues & Animal Welfare at the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association in Ottawa.

© FrontLine Security 2015

 

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Event Intelligence
JONATHAN CALOF
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 3)

Why are conference events so good for intelligence? Because they bring the experts together customers, competitors, government regulators, suppliers, ­academics and so forth – experts with information. From a collection perspective, people attend events with the objective of exchanging information, so they are keen to talk.

​Securetech, a tradeshow/conference that brings together 100+ booths exhibiting the latest in safety/security products and services, thousands of expected visitors, four conference tracks (cyber security, counter-terrorism, emergency management, and personal protective equipment), and dozens of experts from private sector, Canadian and Foreign governments including speakers from National Defence, Homeland Security, police forces, municipalities – all talking about topics like unmanned systems for first responders, emergency operations centers, building resilience against terrorism, integrated systems for first responders today and tomorrow, cyber protection and the technical innovation that drives, well, everything. This is an event where security and safety experts and organizations are gathering to share information. Given the sheer number of information collection opportunities at Securetech, I thought this would be a good opportunity to write to you about my favourite area of expertise – competitive intelligence

Described as the act of defining, gathering, analyzing, and distributing intelligence about products, customers, or competitors, competitive intelligence supports executive strategic decision-making. It should not be confused with corporate or industrial espionage, which use illegal and/or unethical methods to gain an unfair competitive advantage.    

Event intelligence is a popular theme with competitive intelligence professionals. Competitive Intelligence Magazine (the magazine for members of the Strategic and Competitive Intelligence Professionals – SCIP) has a regular column on it (I write it). There is a book about it put out by the Competitive Intelligence Foundation, and there have been countless webinars from leading competitive intelligence organizations.  

Intelligence professionals are well aware of the potential of trade shows. For example, Vernon Prior, a well respected, Australian intelligence practitioner wrote in the 90s that, at trade shows, a “Properly organized, competent, well-briefed team should be able to gather more useful information than they could ever hope to collect in a full year in any other set of circumstances.” 

Ten years later, Joe Goldberg (formerly senior director of business intelligence at Motorola, and before that a top notch CIA officer) wrote: “Conference and trade show events are the most concentrated, productive and cost-effective means to spotlight strategic trends, and they often go unnoticed in normal intelligence activities. Trade shows, conferences, and seminars furnish the greatest collection potential in the shortest span of time for the least amount of money. The many formal and informal activities at the event provide a variety of collection opportunities. Over the years, a small community of business intelligence (BI) experts within Motorola has made the most of trade events as a primary collection opportunity”.

I have led many groups on trade show intelligence missions and can attest to the extraordinary opportunity that events bring. So why are trade shows and other events so good for intelligence? Because they bring the experts together customers, competitors, government regulators, suppliers, academics and so forth – experts with information. From a collection perspective, people attend events with the objective of exchanging information so they are keen to talk. Validation of information is also simpler at events. There are always sources to validate information at the event – again, everyone is there. At one event, my task was to validate a rumor about a major technology development happening within the next year. The show attendees included scientists who certainly would be involved in this activity, government officers who are also part of the area, companies with leading edge technology, academics and others who would have been consulted on emerging developments. Validating the rumor was straightforward and quick. 

The key to taking advantage of the opportunities of events such as Securetech for developing important intelligence lies with the start of Vernon’s quote “properly organized”. Event intelligence involves a rigid planning and execution discipline. Here are a few organization tips:

Tip 1: Help your organization focus their intelligence and information needs – help them figure out what they need to know. 
What are the specific intelligence needs of your organization? Do you need to update technology profiles? Customer profiles? Competitor profiles? Are you trying to get a sense of emerging opportunities? Know what it is that you need to know. 

I was at a lab equipment show for a safety and security related company to help them identify potential equipment to be put on their long term acquisition list. They needed to know where the new technologies are heading – should they put off some current potential acquisitions in favour of new technologies coming out in the next 5-10 years? 

The trade show was particularly good for this as all major lab equipment companies were there with their R&D personnel. 

Another public sector client was looking for innovative policy solution-programs for biotechnology. The bio show, with its dozens of government pavilions and numerous ministerial delegates, was a great place to gather this information. 

Tip 2: Overlay your information and intelligence needs with the event activities or, put another way, make sure you know where you will be spending your time at the event. 
The thing about events is that they are very temporal. Once the event is over, there is no going back. Accordingly, it is important that you plan where and when you will spend your time to ensure that you take advantage of the right opportunities and do not waste your time doing things that are not important for your organization. Review all event materials – exhibitors, workshops, presenters, and registered delegates and match them to the information needs you identified under Tip #1. For Securetech, look over all the conference titles. Which ones interest you? Look at who is speaking. Look at all the exhibitors. Which are important to you? Look at all of this from two perspectives:

  1. Does the speaker/exhibitor have the information that I need? Match the booth, speaker, or panel topic to your organization’s information needs.
     
  2. Will the people who will be attending that particular event (eg. people who will attend and listen to the unmanned vehicle session) be people that I want to talk to? Do I want to hear the questions they will ask? If yes, then they are likely going to be at that particular session and you can talk to them either before or after the panel.

Every time you note something in the program that you are interested in, put it in your event plan, but be sure to link it to your objective(s) in attending the workshop, or visiting the booth etc. Have others from your organization (for example senior management) look at pre-show materials to identify areas they would like to see covered. I use a form similar to the one shown here to help summarize everything I want to do at an event. 

Sometimes I have gone to shows with the sole objective, not of collecting information, but meeting people who will be of help to me in future intelligence initiatives – call this creating a new network. It’s still an important intelligence objective for the event but, to figure out who you need to meet at the show, you need to know what your organization’s longer term information needs are.

Tip 3: Find out who will be going to the event and see if they can help you.
No matter how organized I am, I can’t be in more than one place at a time, yet I invariably have identified two or three panels that I want to attend that are occurring at the same time. I also am limited in how much time I can effectively gather information during an event and, given the information opportunities at events, my needs are always greater than the time I have, so I either need to cut down on my information collection objectives or find other people who can help me. The starting point is sharing my plan with others. I let my co-workers who are going to be going to the event know what information I am looking for that they may come across, I let government and association executives know what I am looking for that may be part of their domain. I share. The more eyes and ears you have at an event helping you out, the higher the likelihood that someone will find the information you need.

How do you get these people to help you? Generally, it’s a quid pro quo – you help them with their information needs and they will help you with yours. Most people have collection objectives at events and could probably use the extra help. Also, I try not to overtask them. I ask where they plan to go, what booths they are going to visit, who they are meeting with, what sessions etc. and say to them: “Since you are already going to be visiting that booth /going to that session, would you mind asking a few questions for me?” I did this at one biotech show and ended up having over 100 people 
actively helping me collect information. Networking is important in intelligence, and really pays off at trade shows. 

Tip 4: Contact people that you want to talk to before you go to the show.
Contact as many of your information targets as is appropriate before the show. Since you have already identified people to interview at the event (either by booth number, workshop, or delegate), consider ­contacting them to set up a time to talk at the event, but only if the element of surprise is not important to your plan. Conference time is short and precious. Many delegates have their available show meeting times committed almost a year in advance.

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I have a lot more trade show tips to share, and will do more of this in the future. Also to follow, will be advice how to collect effectively at events, how to use social media to assist in collection at events, the use of analytics at events, what to do after the event, counterintelligence at events, and so forth. But for now, these four planning tips should help get you started. 

Alison Bourey (another competitive intelligence practitioner) estimates that companies waste 30 to 50% of their entire trade show budgets by not having the sort of collection plan and associated mindset talked about in this article. Whether you are going to Securetech this month, or other events are on your horizon, hopefully this article will help you avoid this waste.

To help you prepare for Securetech in particular, this issue of FrontLine includes an article that provides background on the show itself, and an interview with CADSI President Christyn Cianfarani with information about the activities at the event. An article focusing on unmanned systems for first responders is one of the roundtables that are part of the Emergency Management portion of the conference. Another article is based on an example from Securetech’s Innovation Zone, with information from the National Research Council. Call it part of the background research for your Securetech event intelligence program. 

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Jonathan Calof is FrontLine’s Executive Editor.
© FrontLine Security 2015

 

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Protecting FrontLine Officers
KEVIN HAMPSON
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

When four Alberta Mounties were gunned down on a farm just outside the small town of Mayerthorpe in March 2005, it sent shock waves through the RCMP. A fatalities inquiry in 2011 concluded that there was no way such an event could have been foreseen. A decade later, however, some observers say the RCMP still haven’t learned the lessons of Mayerthorpe – even after the similar tragedy in Moncton in June of 2014. These two tragic incidents have become intertwined, both indicative of the inertia that exists when it comes to making changes within the RCMP.

Assistant Chief Judge Daniel R. Pahl, who conducted the Mayerthorpe inquiry, recommended arming frontline members with the Colt C8 patrol carbine to protect themselves against the likes of the shooter who ambushed the Mounties with a high-powered rifle. The force had, in fact, already begun the process of procuring carbines at the time of the inquiry. Yet more than three years later, by the summer of 2014, J Division was only just carrying out its first carbine training course, and none of the weapons were available to Moncton officers on June 4 as a disturbed young man, armed for guerrilla warfare, walked briskly through a Moncton suburb shooting at police. Shockingly, none of the responding officers put on their Hard Body Armour (HBA), and only one brought a shotgun – the others had their 9-mm handguns.

In his report on the Moncton incident, retired assistant commissioner Alphonse MacNeil said the RCMP had taken “far too long” in rolling out the carbines. Released in January 2015, the report noted several instances where officers would have had opportunities to shoot the gunman if they’d had carbines. “This firearm was approved specifically to address this type of call,” he wrote, adding that there were “frontline members of the RCMP who still do not have training and access to the carbine” – despite recommendations after Mayerthorpe.

It appears, however, that this may not change anytime soon. Although the RCMP have expedited the carbine roll-out (one of the 64 recommendations in MacNeil’s report) there is still no plan for all detachments to carry the weapons. Instead, the carbines are being distributed by the force’s regional divisions based on risk assessments in each detachment area. Many observers argue that Moncton would likely have been assessed as a low-risk area prior to the pivotal moment when the city captured headlines world-wide. Is taxpayer money being wasted on number crunchers creating risk charts rather than procuring the weapons for frontline officers at each detachment as a precaution?

Rob Creasser, of the Mounted Police Professional Association, says this is yet another example of senior management’s failure to understand the needs of frontline members in a world that is increasingly dangerous for police. “The RCMP are very slow learners,” he told FrontLine, adding: “Unfortunately, that can have tragic outcomes.”

In 2006, the force began looking into improving their weapons. In 2009, they contracted Carleton University criminologist Darryl Davies to do a feasibility study on adopting the carbine. Davies’ report, completed in 2010, recommended a centrally-run carbine program, with every RCMP member receiving a carbine regardless of where they’re policing. The overwhelming majority of Mounties whom Davies had surveyed said all uniformed officers should have one. Moreover, other Canadian police services were already using it, including the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) and the Calgary police service. However, then-assistant commissioner Bob Paulson found the report inadequate, at least in part because Davies had relied on American studies of the carbine, and so, the report was shelved. It wasn’t until the fall of 2012 that the RCMP finally signed a contract for its first batch of carbines.

Creasser, a retired RCMP officer, believes Paulson was overly picky about Davies’ report, and says this slowed down the process unnecessarily. “It’s kind of the old RCMP way of doing things; if somebody’s already done something and using equipment, usually that’s not good enough. We have to do our own studies, we have to reinvent the wheel, we have to satisfy ourselves. It’s not good enough that other police agencies are already using this carbine and have been for some time. I think that’s a mindset that needs to change.”

Although the MacNeil report doesn’t address the culture of the force’s top management, it does call for a “thorough analysis” of the procurement process for frontline equipment. In its response to the report, the RCMP said that a senior officer from Contract and Aboriginal Policing will lead officer safety initiatives, and “milestones will be set to ensure a specific percentage of members in each division are equipped within a certain period of time.”

Davies says MacNeil’s report is encouraging, but he believes the risk-assessment approach to the roll-out needs to change. “Using their current criteria, Mayerthorpe would most likely have been defined as a non-risk policing detachment, and yet four Mounties were shot dead in this community,” he said, adding that James Roszko, although well known to police, was not deemed a high risk to officers before the shooting.

A former commander of the Mayerthorpe detachment takes a somewhat more sympathetic view of the slow carbine roll-out. “I can understand to a degree why it took so long,” says Kim Connell, who retired in 2001. “It’s a huge cost and trying to get taxpayers’ money to do it.” He adds: “Giving high-powered guns to policemen is a psychological thing within the force, too; nobody wants to do that.”

Indeed, reservations about arming the police with military-style assault rifles are understandable – especially given that Canadians have traditionally perceived their iconic national force as one of cool-headed diplomacy. But wrongdoers today are increasingly better-armed and more inclined to shoot, and many other police forces have been quicker to adjust to this new reality. Davies tried to address potential concerns about the militarization of the police in his report, which included a strategy for educating the public about the rationale behind acquiring carbines. As for cost, Davies says the RCMP should make the case to the federal government that they need more funds if they can’t afford the weapons for all detachments. “The question is, what price do you put on an RCMP officer in this country?” he said.


Police keep watch on a house as they search for a heavily armed gunman following the shooting of three Mounties in Moncton, N.B., on June 5, 2014.

It appears that money might have been saved by purchasing a cheaper carbine. The RCMP opted for a top-of-the-line version, which comes to about $4,500 including all the accessories, the carrying case and the mount for police vehicles. Other police forces have purchased cheaper versions. The OPP, for instance, chose one that was about 60 percent of that cost, according to Creasser.

Inadequate equipment was far from the only problem identified in MacNeil’s 180-page report on the Moncton incident; he also underlined, among other things, shortcomings in training. When the initial call came in – describing a male in camouflage, carrying two long guns and bullets – no shotguns or rifles were deployed. Only afterwards did one member take a shotgun. Additionally, although the detachment had received its HBA in 2013 (as per one of the Mayerthorpe recommendations), it is interesting to note that some officers had never removed the equipment from its original packaging – they were still unopened in the police car trunks. None of the responding officers in Moncton put on their body armour during this chaotic incident.

Several of MacNeil’s recommendations address this, including giving all members a briefing on deployment of the HBA; and having qualified members ensure that available long-barreled weapons are in their vehicle while on duty. The report also makes recommendations for improving officer safety skills and training; these include having trainers and supervisors consider how to mitigate the effect of cognitive biases that can undermine training.

Creasser says that is something most police officers will relate to. “Around Halloween time, we used to get lots of complaints of what sounded like shots fired, but of course it was fire crackers. And you kind of let your guard down.” Calls of a suspicious male with a firearm were common in Moncton, according to MacNeil’s report.

“Unfortunately, complacency does creep into it,” Creasser acknowledges. He barely escaped death in 1991 when a man fired a sawed-off .22 caliber rifle at him during a traffic stop. After the fact, he recognized that he had made several critical mistakes and he says it was pure luck, not his training, that saved him. However, with that sort of danger becoming increasingly common, Creasser says police are becoming more conscious of safety. “Now all we have to do is have the money and the training in place to give us the tools to properly do our jobs, and I’m hoping it won’t take embarrassing the federal government or our managers to get that done.”

The RCMP now has over 2,200 patrol carbines for its 18,988 regular members. “Additional carbines will continue to be acquired by RCMP Divisions as per their individual patrol carbine acquisition strategies and in consultation with our contract partners,” RCMP spokesman Sgt. Greg Cox said in March 2015. There have been 6,000 sets of hard body armour distributed across the country, with another 1,600 to arrive early in the summer.


Annual “C” Division (RCMP) Public Order Unit training in Valcartier. (Photo: Christel Pesant-Legault / 2013)

It’s a start, but there is a long way to go to properly protect the frontline officers that spring into action when public safety is at stake.

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Kevin Hampson is a journalist and freelance writer based in Mayerthorpe, Alberta. He earned a BA in history and political science from McGill University.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Critical Infrastructure Challenges
Cybersecurity Challenges
DOUG COOKE
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

Critical infrastructures (CI) are essential for managing the services and organizations we rely on. Their ability to function securely and without failure is imperative to the well-being of society at large. For cybercriminals, on the other hand, CI is often viewed as a prime target of malicious intent because of its broad reach and interconnectedness.

Despite the growing risks from an increasingly dangerous cyber threat landscape, many of today’s IT professionals in CI organizations believe they are more equipped than ever to face cybersecurity challenges.

A new report by Intel Security and The Aspen Institute, titled, Holding the Line Against Cyber Threats: Critical Infrastructure Readiness Report, supports this premise, while at the same time suggesting a disconnect between CI providers and the current threat landscape. It seems these executives are overconfident or have misplaced faith in their organizations’ abilities to actually be able to effectively respond to an attack.

The report surveyed executives from CI organizations in the U.S., UK, France and Germany and found that executives within these organizations believe that new public-private partnerships that facilitate cyber threat intelligence sharing will be critical to combatting cyber threats in the future. Additional findings from the report include:

  • Perceived improvements: Respondents indicated their own vulnerability to cyberattacks has decreased over the last three years, with only 27% feeling “very or extremely vulnerable” — compared to 50% three years ago.
  • Government involvement encouraged: 86% believe that cooperation between the public and private sectors on infrastructure protection is critical to successful cyber defence. Furthermore, 68% of respondents believe their own government can be a valuable and respectful partner in cybersecurity.
  • Confidence in current solutions: 64% believe an attack resulting in fatalities has not happened yet because good IT security is already in place. Correspondingly, more than four in five are “satisfied or extremely satisfied” with the performance of their own security tools such as endpoint protection (84%), network firewalls (84%), and secure web gateways (85%).
  • Disruptions increasing: CI providers are generally pleased with the results of their efforts to improve cybersecurity over the last three years, but at the same time many (70%) are convinced that the threat level of attacks is escalating. A clear majority (89%) of respondents experienced at least one attack on a system within their organization, which they deemed secure, over the past three years, with a median of close to 20 attacks per year. 59% indicated that at least one of these attacks resulted in physical damage.
  • Loss of life: 48% of respondents believe it is likely that a cyberattack within the next three years will take down CI with potential loss of life, although there were no additional survey questions to determine the circumstances under which respondents believed the loss of life could occur.
  • User error still the #1 issue: Respondents believe user error is the greatest cause of successful attacks on CI. According to the report, user errors from lack of awareness, use of unofficial online services, and use of social media websites at work were most often ranked as the top three causes. Organizations may strengthen their security postures, but individual employees can still fall victim to phishing emails, social engineering and drive-by browser downloads that successfully infect their organizations’ networks. As testament to this, according to a recent phishing quiz survey from Intel Security, Canada ranked 26th of the 144 countries that were surveyed in its ability to successfully detect phishing emails.
  • Government response: 76% of respondents indicated they believe a national defence force should respond when a cyberattack damages a CI company within national borders.
  • Different country perspectives: Significantly more U.S. respondents believe the likelihood of a catastrophic cyberattack on CI, which could result in loss of life, is more certain than do their European counterparts. While 18% of U.S. sources consider this scenario “extremely likely” to occur in the next three years, only 2% in Germany and 3% in the UK think it “extremely likely.”

“This data raises new and vital questions about how public and private interests can best join forces to mitigate and defend against cyberattacks,” says Clark Kent Ervin, Director, Homeland Security Program at the Aspen Institute. “This issue must be addressed by policymakers and corporate leaders alike.”

While Canadian companies were not included in this survey, the cyber threat risks to Canada’s CI organizations are similar. Regardless of which region an organization is located in, an attack can happen anywhere. The reasons for attacks may include espionage, opportunistic data or physical theft, product alteration or sabotage. Similarly, the motives behind these attacks often remain the same: financial gain, data theft, or shutting down facilities.

Over the years, there has been an increase in both the volume and sophistication of attacks, in addition to the number of groups that are spearheading them. As found in the McAfee Labs Threats Report of February 2015, there are 387 new threats every minute, or more than 6 every second. With no sign that threat activity will be slowing down, it is important for CI providers to be prepared to defend against the security risks and potential attacks of today and in the future.

One of the biggest challenges for any organization is being able to defend against every possible attack vector out there. All it takes is one weak point for a motivated hacker to enter any network and begin wreaking havoc. This is why it is important to build a solid security foundation and not rely solely on IT-based security.

What can organizations do?

  • Implement a robust security plan: This includes integrated and intelligent security elements such as endpoint protection, secure Web gateways, data loss prevention, network firewalls, advanced threat detection, intrusion prevention systems and security information event management.
  • Re-evaluate and make necessary changes to security management: To promote greater information sharing and insight on targeted threat intelligence as part of a shared IT strategy.
  • Foster cooperation between government and industry: Closer relationships are imperative to improving the future of the security landscape.
  • Ensure continued user education: On cyber threats, basic user awareness and foundational security practices. Education is key to helping to mitigate user error and risks behind many threats, and is an area where everyone has an opportunity to contribute.

In addition to implementing a security architecture that links protect, detect and correct functions in a continuously updated cycle, collaborating and sharing information and best practices that span organizations is equally paramount to improving the security posture of CI. Minimizing CI risk is a global challenge, so we must all remain vigilant when it comes to securing and protecting the systems and services on which we are so dependent.

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Doug Cooke is the Director of Sales Engineering at Intel Security Canada.
The survey, conducted by Vanson Bourne, interviewed 625 IT decision makers with influence over their organization’s security solutions in France, Germany, the UK and the United States (250 interviews in the U.S. and 125 in each of the UK, France and Germany).
© FrontLine Security 2015

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RCMP members at risk
The Mid-Range Vulnerability
CASEY BRUNELLE
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

Right on the heels of the Independent Review into the Moncton Shooting, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) suffered another violent gun attack on their stretched line of ­operational officers – this time near ­Edmonton – killing Const. David Wynn, and seriously injuring an unarmed Auxiliary officer.

In his 129-page Independent Review of the 4 June 2014 Moncton shootings, former Assistant Commissioner Alphonse MacNeil remarked on the lack of deployed tactical carbines and training, but the Review also highlights inadequate support, communications, intelligence, and supervision during the crisis in which a single perpetrator had Mounties in the Moncton region outgunned and outmanœuvred, not unlike the 2005 Mayerthorpe shooting.

As far back as October 2011, the RCMP officially determined the need for additional firepower for their police officers. This was based on a 2011 memorandum to the membership by then Commissioner William Elliott, where he wrote of “gaps in our operational firearms capabilities.” Yet four and a half years later, the carbines are difficult to find among RCMP patrolling officers qualified to operate them.

It is important to note that C8 carbines manufactured by Colt Canada are already in use by 53 Canadian law enforcement agencies, including the second largest police force in Canada, the Ontario Provincial Police, which keeps one in each patrol cruiser. And yet, after all these years of known shortcomings, these weapons were not deployed in Moncton due to (a) not enough members qualified to operate them; and (b) the few they had were allocated to training and not readily available.

In another example of complacency over officer safety, the hard body armour (HBA) which has been issued to a number of detachments, is rarely employed. HBAs are heavier and carry additional ballistic plates to defeat higher-powered weapons.

In her memorandum to all RCMP officers on 17 June 2014, immediately following the Moncton tragedy, Deputy Commissioner Janice Armstrong – head of the Contract and Aboriginal Police Branch responsible for equipment acquisitions – stated that “HBA has been available to all RCMP detachments since March 2011 […] The HBA is not intended to be part of each members’ personal kit, but made available as needed and when circumstances require.” However, according to the MacNeil report, the members responding in Moncton were neither informed about HBAs nor had they been trained in their use.

Thanks generally to the professionalism of rank and file officers; the RCMP is regarded as a versatile and effective agency with more than 19,000 sworn members who patrol towns, cities, borders, seaways, highways from coast to coast, and into the high Arctic. Most RCMP uniformed officers are alone on patrol in their cruisers, while many isolated fly-in detachments have one or two officers on duty to cover hundreds of square kilometres, so it is essential that appropriate firepower be immediately at hand.

Legacy firearms
To elaborate on the reported “gaps in [the RCMP’s] operational firearms capability” mentioned by Commissioner Elliot, the Mounties use a number of different weapons platforms:

The current long rifle is the .308W calibre Remington 700P bolt-action rifle with a low-capacity, hunting type magazine. Many are equipped with Leupold telescopic sights or use the stock iron sights. The 12-gauge, Remington 870 pump-action shotgun has been a mainstay on detachment for decades and has been produced since 1951. The Wingmaster shotgun, as it is known, equipped with iron sights, pistol grip and folding stock, is normally kept racked inside the patrol vehicle with the limited tube magazine holding SSG pellets and a rifled lead slug or two. But in recent years, there has been less availability of training, and therefore the routine deployment of the shotgun in patrol cars has been reduced more and more.

As for the .308 rifles, they are almost never removed from the detachment lockups. They are traditionally used to dispatch dangerous/injured wildlife or occasionally to hold a barricaded individual until negotiators and tactical units arrive on scene. There is no longer training for this powerful weapon, not even in basic training, at the Academy in Regina.

Other ad hoc weapon choices that were reportedly employed during the incidents at Mayerthorpe and Moncton include privately owned hunting rifles, which were commandeered by the Mounties to supplement their short-range guns.

Interestingly, and perhaps even unbelievably, the RCMP Operations Manual 4.3.4. permits this borrowing of private firearms for operational police use during the aforementioned shootings – for cases when the RCMP’s own arsenal is inadequate to deal with such incidents.

In the tactical context of the open country, a short-range pistol would be ineffective, as would be the shotgun, while the small capacity .308 long rifle with scope – if available and if someone in the detachment is even trained on it – is effective up to 1000 metres. This leaves the reported mid-range gap in both reach and magazine capacity.

Even in the event that there are enough carbines for allocation to all uniformed officers, there is also the pressing gap in training members on its employment and ensuring members have sufficient ammunition for operational contexts. Both of these issues were discussed in detail in the ­MacNeil Independent Review.

Following the murders of four RCMP officers in Mayerthorpe in 2005 by a lone gunman, it was found that calls involving high-powered rifles and assailants are being attended to more frequently, not just by the RCMP but by other law enforcement agencies, as well. Kativik Regional Police officer Steve Dery was shot and killed in March 2013 when a high-powered hunting rifle was used by an armed criminal element in Kuujjuaq, in Quebec’s Arctic region.

In response to the escalation of these types of events, 53 Canadian law enforcement agencies have been employing carbines on patrol for better protection. The RCMP procurement of an equivalent platform has been ongoing for five years, and is becoming an even more contentious process in the light of the Moncton shootings in June 2014. Evidently, gaps have continued to go unanswered in many operational cases.

Safety vs Reality
In Commissioner Paulson’s email to all Mounties in July 2014, just weeks after the Moncton shooting, he stated that the RCMP had “succeeded in getting the first carbine out the door in 2013… [the RCMP has] been carefully deliberate in the rollout and, yes, it may be that some aspects could have gone quicker, but [the RCMP] currently [has] 1,330 out there, another 219 arriving in October and more coming.”

Particularly when operating in remote areas, in which the closest back up can often be hours away, it is hard to believe that having 1,600 patrol carbines allocated to an agency of 20,000 could be considered sufficient to address this safety gap.

With approximately a quarter of the uniformed Mounties on patrol at any given time, this leaves many at a tactical disadvantage, as learned all too well at Mayerthorpe and Moncton.

In the wake of the Moncton tragedy, many within academia, politics, and law enforcement have come to question why these gaps reportedly continue to go unanswered. Following this criticism, Commissioner Paulson stated in his agency-wide email, “that it is a shallow and easy analysis of these murders to link them to absence of the carbine… I ask you not to disrespect [the three murdered officers’] service and their sacrifice by unfairly and prematurely judging how or why they died.”

Six months after the shootings and the commissioner’s subsequent statements, the Moncton shootings’ Independent Review stated that the “patrol carbines would have given a more effective lethal force option and could possibly have influenced members’ risk assessments, tactical approach and confidence levels. This firearm was approved specifically to address this type of call.”

Furthermore, the report states that the lack of this type of weapon, and the training to operate them, was found to be one of the key circumstances that contributed to the deaths of the three officers. Additional conclusions were the lack of HBA, supervisory direction, communications and tactical training by initial responding officers. Even the highly visible yellow stripes on uniform pants were once again noted as factors in aggravating risks to officers.


The Colt Canada C8IUR (Integrated Upper Receiver) Carbine exceeds present standards and will help facilitate the ever-growing need for maximum flexibility in a mid-range option.

Patrol Carbine Project
The C8 Carbine is said to exceed all standards and facilitates the ever-growing need for maximum flexibility, not to mention the reported mid-range gap. With an effective range of more than 500 metres and using a standard high-capacity NATO magazine, this carbine uses a 15.7” floating, hammer forged, heavy barrel of exceptionally high quality. According to the manufacturer, Colt Canada, the barrel, which uses a 1-in-180mm twist rifling, is surrounded by a four-rail attachment system developed initially in 2009 for the armed forces of the Netherlands. The RCMP’s C8s are tested and fitted out by the Force’s armourers in Regina and Ottawa prior to being sent to divisions and detachments. Standard police C8 features also include a forward grip and a trigger activated tactical targeting light.

The initial 2013-2014 fiscal year procurement of approximately 500 C8 carbines for RCMP general duties also included updated armour systems and additional training. Although RCMP headquarters in Ottawa made the initial evaluation, HQ has stated that divisional commands made their individual decisions as to numbers and local deployment.

As is the standard for many of the police variants of the carbine, the RCMP’s choice of optics for the C8 is similar to the U.S. Army’s rugged M68 Close-Combat Optics, in which red-dot sighting is used. It is also compatible with various other technologies if the need arises.

The C8’s pedigree goes back to 1956 when Eugene Stoner first developed the AR-15 under the Armalite brand, then sold the concept to Colt Defense. First issued in 1963 and much more reliable today than its early M-16A1 predecessors, it was used extensively during the Vietnam conflict.

Today, many elite NATO units in the European Union and North America employ the latest versions, including the British SAS. The new RCMP C8, using the 5.56mm in a typical NATO load, is a powerful, highly accurate carbine with a high muzzle velocity at 950 m/s, even when compared to the potent 7.62mm and 308Wcal cartridges.

Future considerations
In the context of operations, this gap can only be realistically addressed once an adequate amount of carbines have been distributed throughout the RCMP and, perhaps more importantly, adequate training and ammunition is there to ensure these platforms are implemented for exactly the purpose for which they are meant in the first place. In consideration of the other glaring shortcomings discussed in the Independent Review by retired Assistant Commissioner MacNeil, to once again see RCMP officers on the evening news struggling for cover behind their police cars, armed just with pistols, while scanning a dense forest for an assailant well out of range, is unacceptable and must not happen again.

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Casey Brunelle is a university student and a member of the Primary Reserves.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Protect Yourself from a Massive Data Breach
BY MAX NOMAD
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

Hackers and cybercriminals are coming up with more and more devious ways to steal every day. Some data breaches are huge, like the attacks on retail store Target and health insurer Anthem, allowing hackers to get access to millions of social security numbers, email address, credit card numbers and other personal information. Some are state-sponsored cyberattacks, like the recent massive data breach that affected virtually every U.S. government agency. The risks of identify theft have increased on a global scale.

Victims of identity fraud can take steps to notify the authorities and credit bureaus. Massive data breaches are different. Being part of a data breach is like losing your wallet at the mall – there is no way to tell who has it, how they will use it, when they will use it, or if they will use it at all. Only one thing is certain: you must take precautions. IT computer consultant Max Nomad offers specific advice for FrontLine readers.

Of course, when it comes to anything digital, nothing is 100% safe – with time and the right resources everything is crackable. The key is to make it so time- and resource-intensive that the rewards of the crack aren’t worth the effort.

The average Password Locker can be considered “safe” because your computer or device would have had to have been previously hacked by that hacker in order to get at your Password Locker files. Many Password Lockers are Open Source, meaning that countless programmers around the world have already gone through the source code and patched up the holes.

Password Lockers use multiple encryption standards for their data. My personal favorite is KeePass2, which uses both AES and Twofish encryption for its databases. Trying to crack the encryption itself with current technology would take centuries.

The only sure-fire way to get into a Password Locker is by brute-force hacking the main password that was set by its owner. This takes considerably less time than cracking the encryption – days, weeks, months or years depending on the length and strength of the owner’s password. More than 99% of the time this is how a hacker will try to break into someone’s Password Locker.

It is important to note that a successful brute-force attack will only compromise one person’s Password Locker. To crack into another person’s Password Locker means starting another brute-force attack campaign. There are crack programs out there for some popular Password Lockers but they’re all brute force, meaning they use trial and error to guess the owner’s password. None of them can crack the encryption itself.

Looking at the headaches vs rewards from a hacker’s perspective, there are plenty of other ways to steal far more passwords (and other personal information) with a much greater success rate and far less effort.

The average adult under the age of 65 has about 20 passwords. Typically they have to be over 8 characters long. Instead of memorizing 20 different passwords, it’s not uncommon for people to use the same password for everything. A hostile adversary that manages to steal their password at one point will have effectively compromised all those sites.

If you write a (readable) username and password on paper, the instant someone sees that paper your security will have been compromised… and you may not know it.

Treat all your data as valuable. To a seasoned hacker on the hunt, data comes in two types: data to exploit and data to steal (and sell). Even the most innocent information can be parlayed into playing a role in cracking into your network. Take nothing for granted… and shred everything once it has outlived its usefulness.

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Max Nomad is an IT Consultant, and author of Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse: Safer Computing Tips for Small Business Managers and Everyday People.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Common Operating Picture for Emergency Management
BY CHIEF RHEAUME CHAPUT and SCOTT DAVIS
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

EM-COP: the New Reality of First Responder ­Technologies
Police, Fire and Emergency Medical Services have evolved over the years based on the demands and changing expectations placed upon them. The emergency service landscape has also changed dramatically and has become increasingly more intricate and demanding. Technology has also played an important role in this evolution of the tri-services. We have interoperability of radio communications, incident management systems and data bases of information to assist in managing emergencies. We continue to embed technology into operations to help deal with the dynamic changing environment we serve, but is it enough?

The need for real-time communications across the tri-services when dealing with a dynamic and changing emergency is crucial. We have seen numerous incidents where the lack of shared real-time information has put emergency services and the public at risk. What we need, is to have a shared Common Operating Picture that involves all aspects of emergency management, in real time.

In Kingston, the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) is a key component for support of major disasters or emergencies and is managed by the municipal control group that includes the city Mayor, Chief Administration Officer, Fire Chief, Police Chief and other senior officials. The EOC is responsible for the strategic overview, or the “big picture”, of the disaster or major emergency. The EOC does not directly control the emergency site but provides the support needed to help the front line emergency services. This is done through a coordinated communications approach and the use of the Emergency Management Common Operating Picture (EM-COP), developed by the City of Kingston’s Information Technology (IT) department.

The IT department uses a geographic information system, commonly referred to as GIS, to manage all municipal location based data. GIS supplies city users such as planning, engineering, utility management and community services with relevant and specific geospatial data. EM-COP was developed to allow stakeholders working within the EOC to visualize and analyze information at the incident site pulling data from the city’s GIS including road, utility network, buildings, municipal floor plans, and demographic information.

Awareness and Monitoring
Each supporting agency is responsible for specific incident management functions in the EOC, and needs specific information to make evidence-based decisions about their area of responsibility. EM-COP provides this information, allowing for a clear picture of the impact of an incident in the community. For example, during an emergency or disaster incident, police would have access to road information to allow for blocking and rerouting traffic, including working with public transit to reroute buses. The information available with EM-COP allows the city’s social services department access to the location of vulnerable occupancies or the population demographics of residents in need of evacuating and relocation. City engineers are able to determine the impact on critical infrastructure such as water supply, electrical and waste water systems. The integration of social media feeds such as YouTube into EM-COP further improves awareness and monitoring during evolving situations.

Previous to EM-COP, supporting agencies within the EOC would rely on printed maps and information that could be outdated within hours of printing. During an emergency or disaster incident, a request from the EOC for updated printed maps and information often took hours, impeding response and recovery time. EM-COP allows for near real-time data.

Pertinent information can be relayed from the EOC to incident command located in the mobile incident command post at the incident site to allow for increased collaboration with responding agencies. This ability provides support for rapid evidence-based decisions to reduce the impact on the public, environment or infrastructure. In a developing incident the on site incident command can access EM-COP inside the mobile incident command post, allowing users to access the same GIS information available to the EOC.

The EM-COP application has the ability to integrate data feeds from other agencies including the national Multi-Agency Situational Awareness System (MASAS). This enables Kingston users to have increased collaboration with other emergency management agencies, allowing for a more coordinated response during large-scale emergencies requiring multiagency coordination.


Users can query numerous types of data, such as municipal floor plans and ortho imagery ­(geometrically corrected aerial photographs).

Plans are underway to add other operational information to the EM-COP application including fire inspection plans, crime incidents and emergency dispatch data. The system’s interoperability opens up opportunities to integrate other solutions including live video feeds from Unmanned Aerial Devices (UAV) and incident management software to capture and track decisions made by EOC staff. The EM-COP is only one component for overall emergency communications awareness.

The next evolution in emergency service will require a comprehensive tri-service emergency response. This will require the integration and coordination of true interoperability within the tri-services. This future includes an environment that will link all three emergency services with connected voice and data capability. This would provide the Incident Commanders, dispatch operations, and EOC operations with the ability to have a full view of all resources in real time for better efficiency. Technologies such as GPS/AVL (automatic vehicle location) will play a key role in providing the real time location of available resources. The sharing of information through a bi-directional CAD-to-CAD interface will enhance common operations and ensure real time information is shared across services. To attain such a high level of interoperability it will take strong leadership and support from all three services. We are not there yet, but the future of emergency response has great potential.

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Fire Chief Rheaume Chaput, and Scott Davis, Emergency Mgmt Coordinator, are with Kingston Fire and Rescue.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Twitter Terrorism
NICOLA DAVIES
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

Fear and propaganda are the weapons of war and, increasingly, so too is social media. Indeed, social media has come under attack as it becomes the ideal media outlet for terrorists and extremist groups. Recruitment, training, ­planning and coordination of attacks, intimidation tactics, and displays of weaponry and power have all been achieved online through avenues such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Whatsapp.

ISIS and Terrorism
The conflict in Iraq and Syria is an international concern and, recently, Canada joined forces with the United States in opposing the self-named “Islamic State” group (ISIS). Recently excommunicated from al-Qaeda as being to violent, ISIS is a relatively new upstart that has won the devotion of jihadists the world-over. Young conscripts, would-be terrorist fighters, from over 80 countries have flocked to Syria to join the ISIS campaign of terror. For the most part, they are younger than the demographic al-Qaeda enlisted, and many were recruited through social media such as Twitter.

Social media is a way of life for some of the younger generation, and the propaganda and promises of glamour that they are exposed to over Twitter and other outlets is proving to be a particularly effective recruitment tool.

It is well-documented that youth aged 16-24 are at an emotional and intellectual stage of their development where they are seeking direction in their lives through self-determination and independent thought. This makes them more passionate and devoted to causes they have taken on, but it also makes them more easily influenced by grandiose displays. Logic does not necessarily play a huge part in their decision-making processes when emotions are stirred.

Canadians supporting ISIS
A number of Canadian citizens have joined ISIS, and some have even moved to Syria and denounced their Canadian heritage. They make use of social media to boast about their weapons and equipment as well as their opinions and their acts of terrorism, violence and depravity. Guns and militants posing with their weapons and ammunition are common Tweets, while macabre jokes about beheadings display the extremist mentality these recruits have adopted. American journalist James Foley became the brunt of some of these online taunts when he was beheaded on camera. Tweets such as these are intended to spread fear and tweets are frequently used in newspapers and journalistic articles. Social media, however, is a much faster means of spreading information, regardless of whether its intention is information, disinformation or instilling fear.

Twitter Terrorism
Recruitment into ISIS and propaganda are just the beginning of what is becoming known as Twitter Terrorism. ISIS has also made use of social media to intimate Iraqi forces into retreat through live tweeting of mass executions and announcing their operation plans through social media. This form of intimidation is one that the world has never before seen in war. Defence forces were completely unprepared for it, but are now vigilant and actively searching social media for future occurrences. Twitter is also believed to have been used to coordinate the recent attacks on military personnel in Montreal and Ottawa.

Hashtags, a common method of searching for related tweets, has also become a weapon of war. The first hashtag to appear on Twitter in support of ISIS was an Arabic one that means one billion Muslims who support ISIS. One particular hashtag, #AllEyesOnISIS, has become the sounding board for ISIS supporters and includes photos of handwritten notes supporting ISIS, memes, and photos of supporters in military outfit, as well as odes and shout-outs to martyrs to ISIS’s cause. However, it appears that many of the tweets, particularly the initial ones in June 2014, were by the same small number of people. This demonstrates a strong influence of activist involvement in ensuring the success and publicity of the hashtag propagation.

The Psychology of Twitter Terrorism
Social media sites were created for information sharing and are therefore not equipped to be policed for terrorist activity. Such platforms are often seen as a ‘megaphone’ to extremists’ intent on getting their message across to a mass audience - they are easily accessible and largely unmonitored. Some experts have claimed that as a result of this, social media has become part of ‘war paint’ and a tool for propaganda and intimidation. Extremists can gain ‘followers’ globally - a power trip that goes far beyond the influence of previous war leaders such as Hitler and Starling.

Social media also provides a level of anonymity and safety for extremists, protecting them - to some extent - from the law. This has the additional effect of making support and military strength seem more overwhelming and influential than it really is. While the militants actively available to ISIS for any acts of war they wish to carry out may not be in great enough numbers to overwhelm their opposition, the intimidation and fear their apparent support commands may be enough to demoralize opposing forces.

The War against Twitter Terrorism
So, what is being done to prevent or stop the use of social media for terrorist activity? A number of strategies have been put in place. For example, the Iraqi government implemented internet blackouts and bans on the Twitter and Facebook accounts of ISIS fighters. However, more needs to be done, as highlighted by Robert Hannigan, Director of the British surveillance agency Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ). Hannigan is reported to have expressed the need for social media companies to take terrorism more seriously. At present, such companies remain intent on not compromising the freedom of expression that their services are based on. However, it has been argued that they need to do more to cooperate with security agencies as without such cooperation surveillance will always remain one step behind the terrorists.

With the globalization of communications and ease with which information can be shared came social media jihadism. A medium intended for human connection and sharing knowledge and skills became an extremist recruitment office, a weapon of fear and intimidation, a training ground for militants, and a war room. This is further proof that any tool intended for the good of mankind can be distorted into a weapon of destruction and chaos. However, we can rest assured that Intelligence agencies are actively tracking these tweeting terrorists, taking espionage to a new and necessary level.

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Dr Nicola Davies is a psychologist and writer with an interest in the psychology behind frontline work.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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The Mental Trauma of Search and Rescue
NICOLA DAVIES
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

No matter how prepared frontline workers consider themselves, there is inevitably a huge sense of shock when a disaster or catastrophe occurs. Strategies for dealing with disasters, both man-made and natural, include providing training for emergency responders and health professionals in disaster intervention strategies. Dr Nicola Davies examines the mental training Search and Rescue (SAR) workers undergo to make more effective decisions and avoid mental trauma.

Man-Made vs Natural Disasters
Pearl Guterman from the Department of Psychology at York University in Toronto, distinguishes in her report, ‘Preparedness for Disaster,’ between the psychological impact caused by natural disasters versus a terror attack. In the first instance, the disaster isn’t due to an act of ill will, but is simply natural forces at work, which can sometimes be exacerbated by human intervention (think of deforestation leading to higher incidence of mudslides). On the other hand, a terror attack is pre-planned, and the level of horror and outrage from the brutality of these attacks can cause severe mental trauma. Indeed, there is usually no warning for these attacks, so people are caught unawares and have no time to prepare themselves mentally.

In the case of a storm, flood or avalanche, nature often gives some sort of sign of what is to come. If the signs are ignored then we have only ourselves, or whatever agency failed to take action, to blame. For example, there were warnings of the possibility of the tsunami that struck South East Asia on 26 Dec 2004. Indigenous creatures had moved to higher ground, but people were unaware of the looming disaster. These signs are easier to identify in retrospect. Still, as a result of this catastrophic disaster, clearly marked tsunami escape routes were established and locals are now trained in the correct actions to take to protect their families should this ever happen again. In addition, greater attention is now paid to scientists working to track seismic activity in the region.

In the case of a terror attack, however, people are angered by the senseless waste of human life and are unable to comprehend how the perpetrators could be so cruel and hateful to attack their fellow human beings in such a way. Jim Lee, President of the Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue, says, “Man-made apocalyptic events have a much more profound affect on Search and Rescue personnel than those naturally caused.”

Immediate Responses to Disaster
In a disaster situation – whether natural or man-made – there are usually four ways in which people respond: blind panic, where people take extreme risks to escape, often injuring or killing themselves in the process. Few can forget the images of people jumping to their deaths from the towers in the 9/11 terror attacks. However, this is not a common response. More common is a fright or shock reaction where the person freezes and cannot physically do anything to help themselves; or disorientation, where a person is stunned and wanders aimlessly, unable to process what has happened or assess the situation and take appropriate defensive actions. The fourth reaction is where a person is able to quickly take stock of the situation, find an escape route, start helping survivors to safety, and initiate rescue attempts – even before the first responders arrive on the scene with the correct equipment.

This level-headed approach is why SAR responders train so hard – so it becomes second nature, no matter the magnitude of the disaster. Lee says various factors play a role in this cool-headed approach, such as the responder’s personal history of traumatic experience – does the present incident reflect a previous one? does the incident involve family, friends, or children? “The potential reaction can also escalate if the children are unknown to the responder but of similar age to his/her own children, or who have similar characteristics. To try to clarify further, an emergency responder seldom knows to whom he is responding. His degree of reaction will likely be greatly impacted if he discovers the child he is trying to save or extricate is his own.”

Critical Incident Stress Training
The Canadian Forces School of Search and Rescue runs an 11-month program, for which only 12 to 16 new students are selected each year. The bulk of its training resources goes towards improving the skills of existing SAR personnel. Recruits are trained to operate in remote and often inaccessible areas of Canada. Skills taught include administering life-sustaining medical care to people with many different injuries and levels of severity. Not only are the physical aspects of SAR taught; students also undergo rigorous mental training to help them cope with the traumatic situations they encounter.

Lee advises, “Training in the effects of Critical Incident Stress (CIS), and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), what to look for in self and others, identifying the psychobiological and physical symptomology is needed to make more effective decisions and avoid mental trauma.” He adds, “In my opinion, any SAR agency should be offering good programs educating their members about CIS and PTSD as part of the basic training package – normalizing the various responses that the members may experience, and normalizing the interventions that can be of great help.”

It is of interest to note that CIS isn’t a clinical diagnosis but “rather a neologism developed from work with police and fire personnel,” according to Dr Gerald Lewis, in his book ‘Critical Incident Stress and Trauma in the Workplace: Recognition, Response, Recovery.’ A “PTSD diagnosis should only be assigned to people who are symptomatic for at least one month,” asserts Lewis.

CIS training is “best done by peers who are well educated in CIS/PTSD intervention,” says Lee. “Peer CIS debriefers should be trained by professional Mental Health Providers with backgrounds in CIS/PTSD. Peer programs have proven to be very effective both as a prevention tool, and an intervention tool. I can’t stress strongly enough the importance of having CIS training as an integral part of any SAR training program.”

Post-Disaster Responses
After a disaster, people commonly go through three stages: the rescue stage, the inventory stage where they take stock, and the recovery stage. During the rescue stage, people are on an adrenalin high and may display acts of heroism, feats of strength, and strong will in order to survive. During the inventory stage, some shock sets in and people may experience anger, grief and self-blame. Why did I survive when so many others didn’t? Why did I not react fast enough? Why wasn’t I strong enough to prevent casualties? Who did this? Why? These are all common questions that run through the minds of SAR Crews, as well as the victims of disasters.

During the recovery stage, people start coming to terms with what has happened – however, flashbacks, fears, anxiety and unusual behaviour can be experienced by an individual anywhere from a week after the incident to 25 years later.

Often, individuals who appear calm and normal at the time of a disaster will experience reactions only once the pressure is off. Symptoms may include night sweats, nightmares, excessive fear, anxiety, and aggression. For a rescue worker who confronts disaster situations on a regular basis, it is vital to come to terms with what they have experienced and work through emotions in order to regain a balance.

“I had a very good SAR crew lost due to unexpected reactions that are completely normal in circumstances that are anything but normal,” says Lee. “This was due to inadequate training that failed to help them or those working with them to understand CIS, and how to deal with it. In many provinces, PTSD is now recognized as a compensable work-related illness. Any organization needs to be well aware of this, and design their training programs with this fact in mind.”

Often, SAR personnel have been assessed as being disoriented or suffering from shock whereas, in fact, they may simply be exhausted from lack of food, water, sleep and warm clothing. They may have been working for hours to help others to safety, digging people out of rubble, trying to save possessions, or any one of the activities required to help reduce negative outcomes in a disaster situation. A well-trained SAR responder will be able to distinguish the difference in their colleagues.

Psychological First Aid
SAR personnel are trained in psychological first aid (PFA), which equips them with the skills to comfort, reassure and communicate effectively with traumatized survivors. By training not only the first responders, but also the public at large in PFA, people are better equipped to deal with an emergency situation and any associated psychological trauma can be minimized. Dealing with fatalities can be extremely stressful for responders. Training in disassociating themselves from emotions, much like a doctor when performing surgery, helps them cope with the task of recovering bodies while still being able to reassure survivors and provide a strong shoulder for those stricken by grief.

Lee is of the opinion that high Emotional Intelligence (EI) can enhance cognitive ability in stressful situations. “Clear emotional boundaries are important, as it is necessary that the responders not let their emotions negatively impact their effectiveness,” he says. “Self-awareness training – identifying individual traits that enhance or challenge the individual – can help mitigate negative reactions regardless of personality types or factors in most cases. In dealing with survivors, [those trained] in EI can help reduce shock and stress, as empathy has a calming effect, and those high in EI are usually high in empathy. To that I will add that empathy is quite teachable.”

Lastly, coping mechanisms and social support are vital in the prevention of PTSD among SAR personnel, says Lee. “Coping mechanisms that are healthy are teachable as part of a good training program. Awareness of CIS/PTSD causes and symptoms act as a preventative. Utilization of a close network of support – including family, friends, and colleagues – goes a very long way for both prevention and treatment.”

Search and Rescue teams should be trained not only to provide emotional support for those who have experienced great loss and trauma, but also in how to deal with their own range of emotional responses to the distressing and demanding situations they encounter on a regular basis.

It is vital that the psychological well-being of SAR workers be regularly monitored by their peers, superiors, and mental health professionals. They are the first to arrive at any rescue or disaster situation, and the lives of others depend not only on their physical and technical expertise, but on their mental attitude as well.

Although often faced with overwhelming situations, we should never underestimate the resilience of the human spirit in these exceptional people as they risk their lives or come face to face with disaster time and time again.

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Dr Nicola Davies is a psychologist and writer with an interest in the psychology behind frontline work.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Saving Those Who Save
CASEY BRUNELLE
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

A new report being published for the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit will no doubt become part of a broader global debate on the need to improve the safety and security of humanitarian healthcare workers deployed in unstable contexts throughout the world. The report, “Managing risks: Study and meta-analysis on violence against healthcare personnel in unstable contexts”, is a collaborative work from a number of high-profile frontline humanitarian organizations – the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), and Humanitarian Outcomes.


The ICRC and South Sudan Red Cross staff and volunteers present on the ground collect the airdropped food, unpacked them and divide them into family rations. (Photo: International Committee of the Red Cross)

While the full meta-analysis is featured on the Frontline Safety and Security website, the following summary will highlight the critical aspects of the report’s research as well as its key findings and recommendations.

The growing plight of healthcare workers in the field
Humanitarian healthcare aid was first recognized as a specialized field in the mid 19th century. Flocking to stricken and sometimes volatile areas, these impartial healthcare workers have found themselves in the midst of violence. Over the last several decades, the safety and security of healthcare professionals who travel to dangerous areas to provide medical help to those in need has entered into the broader global debate as an urgent and systematic issue. With the rise of unconventional warfare by small groups capable of wielding global impact, we see combatants exhibiting a lack of respect for the principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality, and independence. This has resulted in increased risks to healthcare workers through the actual and threatened use of violence by a plethora of state and non-state actors.

The Red Cross was the first major organization to initiate investigations into incidents of violence against healthcare workers. Their 2008 Health Care in Danger (HCiD) project, which sought to address the lack of a central reporting agency on attacks, has since been mirrored by other like-minded organizations. Despite many strategic gains in discerning best practices to improve the safety and security of healthcare workers in the field, much remains to be done in terms of examining the motivations behind targeted attacks, risk factors that contribute to them, the accountability of perpetrators, and long-term impacts of these incidents in the healthcare field specifically and the humanitarian field more broadly.

These attacks come in a daunting variety of forms, all of which are blatant examples of the decreasing lack of respect for the humanitarian principles that have served to protect healthcare workers over the course of decades. Even more common than the deliberate and systematic targeting of healthcare workers (such as the killings of polio vaccination workers by the Pakistani Taliban) are instances of indirect assault on these personnel, including impeding access to the wounded or sick. Routine harassment and threats to humanitarian convoys in Syria since 2011 is just one of many examples).


Ambulance damaged by gunfire and explosion emphasizes the danger health workers are often in the field. (Photos: ICRC)

Perhaps most common, however, are threats of opportunistic violence and common crime against healthcare workers. Medical personnel have fallen victim to assaults, muggings, thefts, and other forms of violence that are typically seen as being spillover effects from pre-existing and chronic instabilities.

Many attack case studies are discussed in detail throughout the report. For example, after multiple incidents against MSF personnel in Somalia, the organization withdrew its services from the country in 2013 in order to protect its volunteers).

Key findings

  • The rate of violent attacks against healthcare workers has increased dramatically in recent years, with opportunistic threats being more prevalent than deliberate threats;
  • Three-quarters of attacks against healthcare workers are perpetrated in six countries (Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, and Syria).
  • 91% of affected healthcare workers are nationally based, rather than internationally based (International Red Cross and Red Crescent, MSF, etc.);
  • Approximately half of attacks take place while healthcare workers are travelling on the road, in transit from one site to another; and
  • Almost one-third (32%) of attacks against healthcare workers are perpetrated by non-state armed groups, while 25% are inflicted by state armed forces.

Preliminary conclusions
The humanitarian community broadly, and the healthcare field specifically, are in need of improvements in practices, equipment, and training, in order to properly ensure the sustainable safety and security of healthcare workers in unstable contexts.

More quantitative research must be done in determining risk factors, complemented by qualitative reports submitted by those in high-risk areas, so that mitigation strategies can empower contextually sensitive practices and policies on the ground.

A paradigm shift is needed in quantifying attacks based on motivation and inputs, not merely impacts and outcomes. This will help enable preventative over-reactive measures.


Syrian Arab Red Crescent teams from Damascus provided first aid services to the evacuated people from Moadamiya (Photo: Syrian Arab Red Crescent)

The healthcare community is required to develop standard operating procedures (SOPs) in order to enforce the recognition and protection of humanitarian workers, as accorded by international humanitarian law.

Recommendations
Beginning with the HCiD project in 2008, multiple frontline humanitarian organizations have begun to formulate high-level policies that seek to generate proactive discussion and raise awareness of the increasing dangers facing both national and international healthcare workers deployed in the field. The ICRC’s Health Care in Danger: Making the Case is one such initiative in which strategic considerations are listed:

  • Build a community of concern
  • Regular and methodical information gathering
  • Consolidate and improve field practices
  • Ensure physical protection
  • Facilitate safer access for staff and volunteers
  • Engage with states and national armed forces
  • Engage with non-state armed groups     
  • Engage with professional healthcare institutions and health ministries     
  • Encourage interest in academic circles

While improving security for healthcare workers is a noble starting point in spurring the conversation, there remain many gaps in real operational and tactical best practices. More information is needed before a comprehensive and holistic list can be produced. Using the meta-analysis and recommendations in this report, we may see a paradigm shift developing in terms of both policy and practice.


Carrying a ‘cold box’ filled with polio vaccines, vaccinator Nyaluak Tebuom, 14, passes other travellers on a dirt road as he journeys to Pakur Village, in Unity State. Nyaluak must walk more than 10 kilometres on the road, which is laden with anti-tank mines, to administer the vaccines to the village’s children. (Photo: Unicef)

Focusing more explicitly on operational and tactical practices, Humanitarian Outcomes prepared an initial list of “Sample SOPs for road movement.” Their report, Unsafe Passage: Road attacks and their impact on humanitarian operations (2014), focuses on analysis and recommendations to safeguard healthcare workers while en route from compounds or offices and the site of healthcare taskings itself. Many, if not all, of these Standard Operating Procedures have long been implemented by Western armed forces, in response to recurring risks from asymmetric forces while in transit from site to site.

Embracing these SOPs does not indicate a distancing from the humanitarian principles of impartiality and neutrality, but rather the sharing of best practices that can enable healthcare workers to limit their dependence on external security forces on either side of the conflict in question. This sample list of initiatives and protocols would be particularly useful to develop SOPs:

  • Defensive driver training (for drivers and staff);
  • Conflict mitigation training, including negotiation skills;
  • How-to Guides (including good practice at check-points and roadblocks, under crossfire, during armed robbery or kidnapping, when engaging with local authorities, etc.);
  • Travel/movement procedures based on programme criticality;
  • Check-in and -out procedures;
  • Curfews and no-go areas;
  • Two-car rules and vehicle-spacing guidelines;
  • Passenger policies, including the use of local community leaders to accompany movement of staff;
  • Routine changes in routes and times, often on a daily basis; and
  • Use of high-frequency radio and satellite equipment during long-distance moves.

With differing opinions on how to improve security measures for healthcare workers, and steering clear of the “one size fits all” mentality, it may be necessary to assess each scenario on a case-by-case basis.


A doctor examines a child at the hospital run by the Hawa Abdi Centre. (UN Photo: Tobin Jones)

Due to the contextual nature of these attacks, the same measures used to safeguard polio vaccination workers in rural Pakistan may not be effectively used to protect healthcare workers elsewhere from common criminal acts. The goal of this meta-analysis, however, was to study the data already available to organizations within the humanitarian community, and to pave the way to institutionally improving safety within the international healthcare industry We must prioritize safety and security of health practitioners and staff.

While much of the research was performed by like minded humanitarian organizations, it is ambitious in scope and at a very broad level. Nonetheless, there are many viable operational and tactical recommendations, and should to be implemented quickly to improve practices and policies on the ground.

Ultimately, the specifics of SOPs in safeguarding healthcare workers and facilities must come from those stakeholders within each specific environment – those who know the terrain, the people, and the threats.

Ideally, this will be developed from a holistic effort by healthcare workers and their organizations (in tandem with national and local authorities), with an aim to determine contextual best practices. A concerted effort to determine motivations and risks can help shed light on reducing impacts in both the short and long term.

That considered, a high-level discussion held within the forum of strategic policy-making, in order to prescribe feasible improvements, could help facilitate the protection of lives and assets where they are the most vulnerable.


A nurse takes care of an infant child in an incubator at the Al-Sabeen Hospital in Sanaa. Hospitals and clinics in Yemen have been paralyzed by the war; they have either been attacked, run out of medical supplies and fuel or the medical staff have been forced to flee. (Photo: Unicef)

It is becoming increasingly evident that the realities of the current humanitarian climate are demanding that healthcare workers adopt more security-responsible mentalities at an institutional level.

With more and more personnel caught in the crossfire each year, the luxury of postponing this debate any longer has long-since passed.

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Casey Brunelle recently completed a full-time internship at United Nations Headquarters in New York City
Click here to view the meta-analysis in full, the risk indicator matrix conceived by the author, as well as the primary sources used in this report.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Synergies between National Security & Public Safety
SCOTT NEWARK
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 3)

In the immediate aftermath of the 9-11 terrorist attacks, one of the most important realizations by Government was that a society’s crime vulnerabilities were likely national security vulnerabilities with potentially enormously dangerous consequences. 

An example of this, which ironically I raised in my first column for FrontLine Security magazine back in 2006, was inadequate cargo screening, intelligence analysis, and personnel deployment at Canada’s major marine ports. 

Canada has since made significant improvements with respect to marine security, although it demonstrates the unique institutional challenges that ‘national security’ issues present. It’s not all bad news, however, because there are real productive synergies for the general public safety of Canadians that can result from these activities when deployed through a strategic and informed approach. 

To fully appreciate these opportunities, it is helpful to understand the ‘security’ and ‘public safety’ sectors, and how they differ, but also how they can overlap to produce increased cost effectiveness and operational productivity. 

The first reality to understand is that although national security is a ‘national’ issue (like the defence sector), there is no single entity (like the Department of National Defence) that is responsible for operations. Instead, there are multiple Departments including Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness (wisely created post 9-11), Transport Canada, National Defence (CSE), Citizenship and Immigration, Finance (FINTRAC), Fisheries and Oceans (Coast Guard), Infrastructure Canada, Industry Canada, Public Services and Procurement Canada (Shared Services Canada) and others.

And… within those departments, especially Public Safety, are a variety of agencies that are in charge of different aspects of the ‘national security’ operational scenario – think RCMP, CBSA, CSIS, CSC, NSS and PBC. Within the department itself, are responsibilities for ‘national security’, cyber security, critical infrastructure protection, and counter radicalization. 


HMS Daring S1850M Long Range Radar

If you want to get a sense of the inter departmental involvement and the complexities that are created, just look at the Shared Services Canada directory on the Government Electronic Directory Service, which is an excellent tool for finding who’s the right contact for a given project.

All of these departments and agencies appropriately have their own budgets, policy priorities, personnel and institutional interests (including, in some, risk aversion), so it’s not surprising that the result is an environment replete with duplication, competition, and ‘silos’ that obstruct substantive progress. 

The final challenge of the national security sector is that, unlike the defence sector, the operational participants are not confined to the national or federal level of government but also include both Provincial and Municipal governments and law enforcement and emergency responders within their jurisdiction. 

In this area, Canada had something of a head start as we already had a successful history of specialized inter agency co-operation such as with the RCMP-led Combined Forces Special Enforcement Units which have served as an effective model for the Integrated National Security Enforcement Teams (INSET) which exist throughout Canada. 

The issues involved in national security operations, either preventive or investigative, almost always include local law enforcement issues, and thus their full and informed participation is something to be encouraged. It is a strength that is not without challenges, but it is a core part of an effective national security strategy. 

That combined and even integrated approach to law enforcement has had a significant consequence in that the actions taken to support national security operations can, in some circumstances, actually support more generic public safety initiatives. This is especially the case when it comes to the deployment of security technologies because there is a growing realization that these technologies can have dual-use applications, which means increased law enforcement effectiveness with increased savings. And that’s always a good thing in today’s fiscal environment. 

Automated, analytical radar sensor technology that detects and tracks small vessels and low flying aircraft helps secure our borders but it also provides invaluable information to prevent drug, gun, tobacco and human smuggling into Canada. 

As law enforcement leaders in Canada have noted for years, “what gets through the border ends up on our streets.” Deployment of those systems means reduced crime and reduced costs. Likewise, training with simulation technologies means safer training and less “wasted” resources.

Digital identity verification technology that ensures we’re actually communicating with who we think we are helps protect critical infrastructure from SCADA system attacks and provides a cyber security measure that protects personal information to prevent identity theft. 

Face recognition biometric technology matched to a national security watch list database helps detect and interdict returning and departing jihadis but, with specially designed databases, it also does the same for criminal inadmissible non-citizens and ‘Most Wanted’ fugitives. That means the bad guys are detected before they commit a new crime with a new victim, and add to the staggering costs of our already backlogged criminal justice system.

A critical part of identifying these potential beneficial synergies is bringing together the various players that are involved in the national security and public safety sectors. There has been real progress within Government on this through the Canadian Safety and Security Program (CSSP) which is part of the Centre for Security Science. CSSP has become a catalyst for the inter agency and multiple government project participation that is essential for these synergies to be identified and then realized. Its operational outcome focus is also a huge success. 

In the private sector, the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries (CADSI) has also taken significant steps to bring together industry and government in both the security and public safety sectors. The specialized Securetech conference organized by CADSI is a tangible example of this, and it too is making a difference. 

Thanks to the post 9-11 work that has been done, there is now a clear synergy between national security and public safety projects which can enhance Canadian security and public safety while saving money at the same time. It’s time now to take advantage of these opportunities. 

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Scott Newark is a former Alberta Crown Prosecutor who has also served as Executive Officer to the Canadian Police Association, Director of Operations to the Washington D.C.-based Investigative Project on Terrorism and as a Security Policy Advisor to the Governments of Ontario and Canada.

© FrontLine Security 2015

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The Arctic Icebreaker “Gap”
K. JOSEPH SPEARS
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10 , No 3)

In a ministerial mandate letter dated 13 November 2015, Canada’s Prime Minister, the Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, made it clear to the Honourable Hunter Tootoo, his Minister of Fisheries and the Coast Guard, that developing Canada’s Coast Guard fleet is a priority. To have ministerial responsibilities publicly set out, and with such clarity, is unprecedented in Canadian parliamentary history. The ministerial position clearly seems to indicate that the Canadian Coast Guard is given separate and distinct recognition. The letter specifically stated:

“… work with the Minister of Public Services and Procurement to meet the commitments that were made for new Coast Guard vessels as part of the National Shipbuilding and Procurement Strategy.”

The mandate letter sets out the policy destination Minister Tootoo is to achieve in cooperation with the Minister of Public Services and Procurement. It doesn’t set up the mechanism by which these goals are achieved, that is up to the ministers themselves, which shows the confidence Trudeau has in his chosen Cabinet ministers. This mandate letter clearly signals political leadership and support to work with the public and private sectors to close the icebreaker gap. In the past, the Canadian Coast Guard, a special operating agency of the Government of Canada, was part of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans. This now appears to change, and gives clear ministerial responsibility for this important marine agency. 


Medium icebreaker CCGS Henry Larsen's home port is in St John's, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Arctic Icebreaker Capabilities
Canada is an ocean nation with 244,000 km of coastline and 9,300,000 km² of ocean space under Canadian jurisdiction. With much of these waters in Canada’s Arctic, the need for icebreakers is obvious. The United States, our best friend and ally, faces a similar problem in the Arctic.

Icebreakers have a lifespan of about half a century. That is old for any vessel, especially ones that are used hard, and are of critical importance to Arctic governance and operations. With the Arctic increasingly seen as a potential new international shipping route, the need for robust icebreaking capacity is equally evident.

When U.S. President Obama went north to Alaska this past September, he spoke about the challenges in the Arctic and America’s important leadership role as Chair of the Arctic Council. He made clear the urgent need for the United States to design and develop icebreaker capability in the Arctic. The loss of sea-ice from climate change is an oceanographic dynamic that is opening up Arctic waters to various international players. This requires Arctic coastal states to have a clear Arctic policy as well as a marine capability that includes heavy icebreakers. The Obama Administration wants to speed up the procurement of a heavy icebreaker to 2020.


CCGS Louis S. St-Laurent (left) and USCGC Healy on a joint icebreaking mission.

The lack of appropriate icebreaker capability (the “icebreaker gap”) has received a great deal of commentary following the President’s Alaskan visit. The Arctic icebreaker issue has been well known amongst the Arctic community. In the case of the United States, the U.S. Coast Guard operates icebreakers both in the Arctic and Antarctic. The United States has three Arctic icebreakers, namely medium-duty USCG Cutter Healy, a research icebreaker, and two heavy-duty icebreakers, USCGC Polar Sea and Polar Star. Only Polar Star is operational – last year she was sent to the South Pole and rescued an Australian fishing vessel Antarctic Chieftain. Polar Sea, on the other hand, has been docked in Seattle since 2010 after it suffered a major engine failure, and requires repairs estimated at $100 million. These vessels were commissioned in 1976 and 1978 respectively. Like Canada’s icebreakers, they are conventionally powered, unlike Russia’s  nuclear-powered heavy icebreakers.

Icebreakers are expensive to build, maintain and operate. With only one available, the ability to do a self-rescue will be limited, which is a real concern in a region where people can die quickly from exposure. The recent transit of the Chinese Navy’s five-ship Task Force through U.S. territorial seas off the Aleutian Islands, shows that China is taking a determined approach to Arctic passage. It is interesting that this transit (which took place within 12 nautical miles of U.S. territory) occurred during the President’s first visit to Alaska. It is safe to assume that China is making a statement that it intends to operate unrestricted in the region. China operates Xue Long, the largest non-nuclear icebreaker, and has another under construction.

USCG Icebreaker Gap
In a recent report to Congress entitled The Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker Modernization: Background and Issues for Congress, it was noted that the United States will require six heavy-duty icebreakers in the coming years, at an estimated cost of between US$900 million and $1.1 billion each. Refurbished Polar Star is due to be retired in 2020 and the report suggests that new heavy icebreakers, even under accelerated procurement, would not come into service until 2025, leaving a two to three year icebreaker gap. 

At this time, there is very little funding for the design and development of icebreakers, and this will create serious problems for the United States trying to protect its interests in the Arctic region. The amount allocated to this project for fiscal year 2016 is $166 million, which is an 81% decrease from an earlier allocation. It remains to be seen how serious United States is about filling the icebreaker capability. In a recent analysis of the U.S. Navy’s Arctic Roadmap by the Centre for International Maritime Security, Andreas Kuersten wrote: “As the Navy puts it in the report’s final sentence: ‘The key will be to balance potential investments with other Service priorities.’” The Roadmap, however, currently shows that balance tipping away from any substantial Arctic engagement.

The Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, Admiral Paul Zukunft commented that compared to Russia and other Arctic nations, America is “not even in the game.” Those are strong words. The U.S., though, like Canada, is an Arctic nation and requires modern icebreakers for arctic operations and governance. "

Icebreakers are not a luxury, but the foundation of operations in the region. The Report to Congress identified the problem as follows: “Consequently, unless the service life of Polar Star is further extended (or unless Polar Sea is repaired and returned to service), there will be a period of perhaps two to six years during which the United States will have no operational heavy-duty polar icebreakers. The issue for Congress is whether to approve, reject, or modify the Administration’s plans for sustaining and modernizing the polar icebreaking fleet.” The U.S. Navy has no ice-strengthened vessels that can operate in the region.

Canada’s Icebreaker Gap
Canada’s icebreaker gap is arguably more pressing, and affects the Canadian economy in a major way. Although they do seasonal work in the Arctic, Canada’s Coast Guard icebreakers were designed for breaking ice in southern waters – on the Great Lakes and in the Gulf of St. Lawrence – to keep Great Lakes and Seaway commerce to the Port of Montréal open as long as possible. Our largest and oldest, CCGS Louis S. St-Laurent, now 49 years of age, has been worked hard.

Canada’s icebreaker problems are age- and capability-related. While construction of CCGS John G. Diefenbaker, a new Polar Class icebreaker, was announced with great fanfare by Prime Minister Harper, it is unlikely under the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS) that this vessel will be operational before 2022, and even that date is optimistic. The U.S. estimates it will take 10 years for its shipyards to build an Arctic icebreaker. 


On 5 September 2015, USCGC Healy became the first unaccompanied U.S. surface vessel to reach the North Pole.

The Shipping Federation of Canada (the association that has been representing owners, operators and agents of ships involved in Canada’s world trade for over 100 years) recently released a policy statement that called on the government to ensure there is sufficient icebreaking capability within the Great Lakes System to allow for commerce to take place. This is a shipping infrastructure problem that affects Canada’s economy, and it also impacts Arctic operations and capability. The Federation stated that “The past two years have demonstrated the limits of CCG’s icebreaking fleet as it dealt with icebreaking in the Arctic, the Great Lakes, the St. Lawrence River and Eastern Canada. Already operating with a limited and aging number of assets over a very large geographical area, the conditions demonstrated the breaking point for the system and the need for more icebreakers as soon as possible to meet adequate levels of service and safety.”

Under the current NSPS, Canada’s focus for its new Polar icebreaker has been to build a single, large, conventionally-powered icebreaker that would not operate during the winter months in the Canadian Arctic. 

The Shipping Federation proposes to consider alternative service delivery either through chartering and/or purchasing from other nations, and more importantly, to modify the existing National Shipbuilding plan to build smaller, but more numerous icebreaker vessels. The UK has announced construction of a new polar research ship, at a cost of 200 million pounds, which will come into service in 2019.

Unlike those operated by the U.S. Coast Guard, Canadian icebreakers are not restricted to Arctic operations – they are an integral part of Canada’s shipping infrastructure. These staunch vessels see double duty on a year-round basis, which puts greater strain on these vessels, especially as they age.

With heavy pack ice last spring in the Cabot Strait, Canada’s largest icebreaker, CCGS Louis S. St-Laurent was unable to free Marine Atlantic ferry M/V Blue Puttees from the drift ice. Although we do not think of the waters around Cape Breton and Newfoundland as Arctic waters, these ice covered waters can be every bit as challenging.


March 2007: USCGC Polar Sea (WAGB 11) sits on the ice after a day-long ice breaking operation around McMurdo Sound, Antarctica.  She had been participating in Operation Deep Freeze by keeping a clear and navigable channel for supply ships to get goods, supplies, and equipment to the research personnel working at McMurdo Station.

Canadian Coast Guard Ships Louis S. St-Laurent and Terry Fox both transited to the North Pole both in 2014 and 2015 to perform research in support of Canada’s claim to the North Pole seabed as part of our “extended” continental shelf. Terry Fox was privately built by a Gulf Canada subsidiary in 1983 as an ice-breaking offshore supply vessel for use in the Beaufort Sea, and was world leading technology when it was designed and built in Canada. During the days of Beaufort Sea exploration (1970-80s) Canada led the way in developing icebreaker technology. With contracts dwindling, much of that technical expertise migrated to Finland to continue icebreaker design and development. 

Icebreakers = Options 
It is important to remember that icebreakers give Canada policy options in the Arctic. The Arctic is the world’s last frontier and is becoming a potential geo-political flashpoint as issues arise concerning access for international commercial shipping and exploitation, and harvesting of natural resources. Canada recently sought to increase its claim to continental shelf resources beyond 200 nautical miles under article 76 of the Law of the Sea Convention. This past summer, on orders from then Prime Minister Stephen Harper, scientists conducted further research in support of preparing the claim for the seabed to the North Pole. Accordingly, CCGS Terry Fox and Louis S. St-Laurent were deployed to conduct further geophysical research and data collection. What this example shows, is that Canada’s capability to make policy choices is limited by its actual existing maritime capability. This embraces vessels, maritime air assets, space sensors (our space policy is also part of our ocean policy), unmanned systems, and the training of skilled and specialized personnel. 

The cripplingly long lead time for building this ocean infrastructure, which Canada requires both domestically and internationally, is a cause for grave concern within the maritime security community.


The light icebreaker and buoy tender CCGS Edward Cornwallis steams into port in Sydney, Nova Scotia. 

Moving Forward Together
Now is the time for a reboot of Canadian and American icebreaker capability, particularly in light of rapid environmental changes in the Arctic. We share common waters with the United States, and our interests are very much aligned in the Arctic with our best friend and ally. There is an opportunity for Canada and the United States to work together to build a class of polar icebreakers based on the design of CCGS John G. Diefenbaker. This would alleviate the icebreaker gap, and give both Canada and the United States much-needed capability in the Arctic. This is an opportunity for Canada to examine its National Shipbuilding and Procurement Strategy, and consider increasing its marine vessel opportunities through a variety of means and comments made by the Shipping Federation of Canada. At the very least, it is an excellent starting point for this discussion.

This could be the perfect opportunity to work with the United States – an opportunity for our two countries to work together towards the common good and protect the Arctic environment – which has spinoff benefits on a number of fronts. Such a vision will require leadership. Canada’s new Minister of Fisheries, whose home is in the Arctic, is well aware of the importance and critical need for closing the icebreaker gap. Is Canada’s government up to the challenge? We have the opportunity to get this right and showcase Canadian technology to once again reclaim our position as an international Arctic leader. This is especially important as Russia moves to increase its capability in the Arctic Ocean Basin. Closing the icebreaker gap is an investment in Canada’s future, and is good for both domestic and international reasons.  

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K. Joseph Spears, Principal of the Horseshoe Bay Marine Group, has a long-standing interest in Canada’s Arctic and marine capabilities. He has participated in many policy dialogues in the development of marine practices for the government of Canada. He assisted in the strategic environmental assessment of Canada’s polar icebreaker under contract to the Canadian Coast Guard via Nordstrat Consulting. Joe can be reached at kjs@oceanlawcanada.com 

© FrontLine Security 2015

 

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Terrorism: Learn To Live With It
VALARIE FINDLAY
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

Why Canada and its partners need to focus on defining, mitigating and managing – not eliminating – terrorism.

In these days of sound-bites and quick quotes, the issue of global terrorism by non-state and state-sympathizers has created conundrums in Western Nations when devising and communicating effective approaches, responses and analysing causalities. We see this in our struggles to augment and institute new legislative powers, military involvement and domestic responses to events that may or may not be terrorist motivated.

As much as we have not eliminated or eradicated crime, we have not, and will not be able to eliminate or eradicate terrorism – both being idealized behaviours. But we can manage and mitigate the sub-types of terrorism in their respective contexts and settings with active advancement to analyzed definitions and a responsible use of terminology. This means replacing the general term of terrorism, which is used for too many events before all of the details are known, with specific, substantially analyzed definitions.

In his book, Terrorism: How to Respond, terrorism scholar Richard English pointedly states: “We cannot adequately explain terrorism unless we are precise about what we are seeking to explain.” This is an excellent summary statement.

While vital, this will not happen overnight, as splitting the term into meaningful definitions is difficult and a many-layered process. Note that ‘defining’ and ‘understanding’ are not one and the same.

The current use of the term terrorism is due a lack of analysis and has resulted in a pejorative word of condemnation of a variety of violent acts by various actors, whose motives are often not fully understood and revealed. As value-laden, loaded and as ambiguous as the term “outlaw”, it cannot, for that reason, be referenced as a technical term. Its ambiguity has led to homogenization, down to its causality, in our public discourse and has resulted in our lawmakers and those responsible for enforcement and interdiction moving further from understanding this complex phenomenon rather than achieving a concerted perspective. While scholars add a significant level of definition to the term, taking that lead alone, we run into the opposite issue – a granularity that does not resonate with practical application.

For example, terrorism expert, Bruce Hoffman had argued that terrorism involves politically motivated violence or threatened violence, “designed to have far-reaching psychological repercussions beyond the immediate victim or target”, carried out by a sub-national or non-state, non-uniformed organization “with an identifiable chain of command or conspiratorial cell structure” when referencing non-state or oppositional terrorism. While this may be academically accurate in some manifestations, it clouds the issue of both a practical response and understanding by the general population.


In his book, Terrorism: How to Respond, terrorism scholar Richard English pointedly states: “We cannot adequately explain terrorism unless we are precise about what we are seeking to explain.”

Somewhere between generalization and granularity it becomes necessary to assign context and recognize that terrorism is not a movement but a tactic resulting from a social disruption rooted in political, ideological or cultural ideals. It is multi-factored, multi-causal, and categorically diverse in its implementation.

Furthermore, terrorism is not new and treating it as such obscures a multifarious term. Emerging in the late 1700s during the French Revolution, the term “terrorism” existed prior to this era and has persisted throughout the centuries to the present day. Providing a definitive foundation will allow for the formulation of effective, long term responses under appropriate circumstances and conditions.

An examination of historical profiles of terrorist groups such as the IRA and al-Qaeda reveal distinct differences that indicate individualized responses: the IRA is secular and opposed government and political involvement at the state level; it did not target civilians but there were casualties as a result of their actions. Al-Qaeda, on the other hand, is fundamentalist and intentionally targets civilians to achieve their agenda. The analyses of these observations shed light in defining categorical types of terrorism and add value at the operational and preventative level, more so than an all-encompassing label. Likewise, identifying and critically analyzing the multi-causal and multi-factored nature of terrorism is important in determining patterns of these acts and what may be unique in a particular context – which is why dialogue between scholars of multiple disciplines is important.

When considering responses to terrorism and terrorist attacks, we cannot adopt a singular or primary focused response, or one that is reactive, which is precisely why the above analysis is necessary.

The context of military response or warfare, while politically powerful, has a limited impact as there are major differences between terrorism and orthodox warfare. Terrorism is not exacted in formal combat between states and is not governed by the established rules of conventional warfare. To the antithesis of its intended purpose, terrorists have recognized that provoking military response and militarization has its benefits in deteriorating the “enemy” from a strategic angle and can also result in the encouragement of a stronger terrorist-sympathetic reaction and aid in recruitment. This is clearly evident in the way ISIS baited the U.S. to return troops to the area.

Other examples of the response to terrorism have shown ineffectiveness where there is a lack of leadership and public policy, but augmenting the current direction with committed leadership and strong public policy is not enough. Along with the proper explanation of terrorism, definitions and classification of types and instances – the similarities and the differences – are the foundations. Beyond that, what is required is a balanced strategy that includes: integrated and coordinated efforts related to disruption of funds, recruitment and radicalization; recognizing the power of timely and accurate intelligence gathering and sharing; the harmonization of securitization and preventative action with privacy and civil rights; maintaining strong credibility by respecting orthodox legal frameworks and a democratized process; and avoiding over-militarization. There is no single method, nor an all-hazards approach.

Many years ago, terrorist expert Martha Crenshaw stated “there is no easy solution” with respect to terrorism; this still rings true. However, the quicker we move away from broad-brush terminology, single-cause assumptions, and too-narrow responses, the closer we will get to measurable results and resilient securitization without sacrificing our freedoms.

In the meantime, we need to ask ourselves if actions contrary to the above, coupled with homogenization of terrorism in media and with bureaucratic knee-jerk reactions and over-generalization have become our “Achilles heel” in progressing to lessons learned in the management and mitigation of terrorist activity.

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Valarie Findlay has over decade of senior expertise in Canadian federal government and is President of HumanLed, Inc. (www.HumanLed.com). She has managed and participated in the transformation of mission critical systems, developed cyber-security strategies and frameworks and risk assessment approaches for policing, military and government departments. Currently, she is completing her dissertation on the effects of terrorism on law enforcement in Western nations in the Terrorism Studies Program at the University of St. Andrew’s.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Severe Weather Safety
MARTIN LISIUS
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

My journey with storms began some 40 years ago, and I have learned many lessons that can help others protect themselves, their friends, and their families from the hazards of severe weather.

Storms are fascinating, and part of everyday life in many parts of the world. North America just happens to be one of the most dynamic places on earth for severe weather. For example, significantly more tornadoes occur in the United States than in any other country. The unique combination of atmospheric ingredients required to produce tornadoes just happens to come together here more often than anywhere else. The biggest contributor to this scenario is the Gulf of Mexico, which provides much of the warm, moist air that contributes to developing storms. Strong upper level winds and boundaries such as cold fronts, warm fronts, dry lines, and outflow boundaries from other storms play large roles as well.

A significant portion of the severe weather experienced in the U.S. comes from a type of thunderstorm called a supercell or “mesocyclone,” a very powerful and complex storm. A supercell is defined as a thunderstorm with a persistent, rotating updraft. It can produce damaging ­tornadoes, giant hail, prolific lightning, powerful straight-line winds, and deadly flash flooding. Other weather hazards we experience include hurricanes, winter storms, intense heat, and dense fog. The U.S. is truly a colorful place when it comes to weather.

Charles Darwin once said, “It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.” He was right. Those able, or willing, to adapt to their environment are the most likely to survive. We live in a dynamic region for severe weather. If we adapt, we can live safely with these hazards.

There are three keys to adapting to severe weather: Prepare, Monitor, and Act.

The “Prepare” stage can begin hours, weeks, or even years ahead of a severe weather event, in fact, the more “lead time,” the better. It requires identifying a safe place long before the threat arrives. It may also include stocking up on supplies, and it always includes a plan of action.

Monitor” means to watch and listen to TV, radio, the Internet, or Weather Radio to be aware of the possibilities of severe weather hazards in your area.

Act” is the final stage, and the key to your survival. This is when you carry out your plan of action based on what you heard while monitoring severe weather information sources.

The Integrated Warning System (IWS)
The IWS is a chain of information developed by various government groups, such as local emergency managers and the National Weather Service (NWS), to warn the public about dangerous weather. Trained storm spotters and emergency managers alert the National Weather Service, which then issues warnings or other statements to the media and NOAA Weather Radio to disseminate to the public. It is up to each individual to act on the information they receive.

The Psychology of Severe Weather Safety
Experts can create watches, warnings, and guidelines to help make life safer for people, but severe weather safety is often a clash of atmospheric physics and human psychology. The public is the last and weakest link in the Integrated Warning System due to the complexities associated with human behavior. How do people react when severe weather threatens? I believe that most people respond in a reasonable and safe manner. However, there are behavioral obstacles including:

Complacency – It is important that the National Weather Service, media, and other information outlets not “over warn” in order to avoid developing a complacent public. For example, if several tornado warnings are issued for a city over a period of time, and no tornadoes actually occur, then people may not take future warnings seriously. This is why NWS now uses warning polygons to alert only areas directly affected by a storm.

Storm Psychosis – “Psychosis” is a generic psychiatric term for a mental illness in which a person has lost touch with reality. When severe weather threatens, people with storm psychosis may exhibit irrational behaviour and an unhealthy level of urgency. This seems to be especially common with tornadoes. Unlike a hurricane or blizzard, a tornado is something that can be viewed in its entirety with the eyes. It can take on strange shapes and exhibit mesmerizing motions. People with storm psychosis may run traffic lights and speed dangerously just to “get” a tornado, or even scream frantically when they see a tornado even if they have seen many of them prior. Some may go as far as to deliberately drive into a tornado or even giant hail for the thrill of capturing video for YouTube. They lose touch with reality and may become frantic and blind to reason. It’s vital to note that people in this category are not real storm chasers, even if they refer to themselves as such. Their mode of operation is far different. The vast majority of storm chasers are responsible, safe citizens.

Storm Phobias – There are named phobias for several weather hazards including one for tornadoes and hurricanes, floods, snow, ice, heat, and fog. Astraphobia is the fear of thunder and lightning, or “thunderstorms.” Fear of thunderstorms is common in children and is not generally considered a phobia until adulthood. One should have a healthy respect for severe weather but not fear it. Seek to understand the truth behind this common element of our environment, and transform a fear into an interest!

National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio: “The Smoke Alarm for Severe Weather”
I am always surprised at the number of people in volatile regions who don’t own and maintain an NOAA Weather Radio with the alert feature. It is essentially a smoke alarm for dangerous weather and other hazards. It costs about the same as a good smoke alarm, makes a loud sound like a smoke alarm, and requires a fresh battery on occasion, like a smoke alarm. Every home should have one.

Most weather alert radios sold in the U.S. feature a technology called “SAME” (Specific Area Message Encoding). This allows the user to set their location so they receive watches, warnings and other alerts only for their specific county. This technology cuts down on the frequency of unnecessary alarm activation.

I would advise that you purchase a radio that is just a weather alert radio. These single-tasking devices tend to be the simplest to program and maintain. Avoid weather alert radios that are also AM/FM radios, alarm clocks, etc., if you can. Personally, I have a NOAA Weather Radio with the alert feature and SAME technology at home, at my office, and a weather alert app on my smart phone.

Watches and Warnings
A “watch” means conditions exist for certain types of dangerous weather such as tornadoes, thunderstorms, flash floods, and winter storms. When a watch is issued, it is time to listen and monitor TV, radio, the Internet, or NOAA Weather Radio to be ready for severe weather hazards in your area.

A “warning” means that dangerous weather has been detected or is imminent. When a warning is issued, it’s time to act on your plan.

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Martin Lisius is a veteran storm chaser and cinematographer who has produced several documentaries for public television, including “The Chasers of Tornado Alley”. He produced “StormWatch” for the National Weather Service which uses it to train storm spotters nationwide. His book, “The Ultimate Severe Weather Safety Guide” covers ways to prepare, monitor and act for severe weather hazards including: intense heat, lightning, straight-line winds, hail, flash flooding, tornadoes, hurricanes, ice storms, avalanches, blizzards, and fog.
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Sustainable Peace Process in Ukraine?
Minsk I, Minsk II, and the Security Council
CASEY BRUNELLE
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

With at least 5,820 dead and 15,270 wounded between April 2014 and March 2015, the War in the Donbass region of Ukraine has elevated geopolitical tensions between Russia and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to heights not seen since the Cold War. What began as the “Euromaidan” protests to oust then-President Viktor Yanukovych, promptly evolved into mass unrest and subsequently armed conflict between the post-revolution government in Kiev and pro-Russian insurgents in the eastern and southern regions of the country.


"The battle for Donetsk Airport rages, 2014." (Business Insider)

Despite the failure of the September 2014 Minsk Protocol (Minsk I) to stop fighting in Donbass, the implementation of the internationally-brokered Minsk II package of February 2015 does contribute to the hope of a potentially lasting ceasefire within the region. This second agreement, passed unanimously by the UN Security Council on 17 February, has been sporadically violated along the front lines of the conflict, but the recent withdrawal of most heavy weapons by both government and separatist forces signals the relative upholding of Minsk II, at least in the short-term (with the rebel siege of Debaltseve being a glaring exception to this progress).

While the origins of this conflict can be traced back much further than the 2014 Euromaidan protests, the escalation into outright war was the product of several catalysts. When Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted that the formal annexation of Crimea had been planned weeks before the (much disputed) 16 March 2014 referendum on self-determination, new light was shed on Russia’s calculated moves in countering what it perceives to be the spreading influence of NATO into former Warsaw Pact states.

The appearance of “little green men” in February 2014 and the subsequent annexation of Crimea by Russia came with relatively little blood being shed in the southern peninsula. In eastern Ukraine, however, the oblasts of Donetsk and Luhansk – collectively known as Donbass – saw the formation of the self-declared pro-Russian separatist groups of the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s Republic (DPR and LPR respectively).

Following references to the historical region of southern Ukraine as “Novorossiya” (New Russia) by President Putin, the DPR and LPR formed a confederation under that name on 24 May. On 16 September, both groups merged their respective militias into the “United Armed Forces of Novorossiya.” Regarded as a terrorist group by Ukraine, the militia is composed of volunteers from Donbass itself, with ranks bolstered by foreign mercenaries from within the EU and beyond, as well as regular Russian forces, although the Kremlin continues to deny this.

Minsk I Agreement
The Trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine was formed after the May 2014 election of Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko. It is composed of representatives from Ukraine, Russia, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) with the purpose of facilitating a diplomatic resolution to the War in Donbass. The Group met on several occasions throughout 2014, including after the 17 July downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17.

A new round of peace talks was initiated on 31 July 2014 in Minsk, Belarus, and began the drafting what would become the 5 September 2014 Minsk Protocol agreement, which largely resembled the “15-point peace plan” developed by President Poroshenko. Signatories to the agreement include Swiss diplomat and OSCE representative Heidi Tagliavini; former president of Ukraine and Ukrainian representative, Leonid Kuchma; Russian Ambassador to Ukraine and Russian representative, Mikhail Zurabov; and DPR and LPR leaders respectively, Alexander Zakharchenko and Igor Plotnitsky.

The Protocol outlined 12 key points:

  1. To provide for an immediate and bilateral ceasefire;
  2. To provide monitoring and verification of the ceasefire by the OSCE;
  3. To decentralize power, including through the adoption of the Ukrainian law “On temporary order of local self-governance, in particular districts of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts;”
  4. To ensure the permanent monitoring of the Ukrainian-Russian border and verification by the OSCE with the creation of security zones in the border regions of Ukraine and the Russian Federation;
  5. To immediately release all hostages and illegally detained persons;
  6. To pass a law preventing the prosecution and punishment of persons in connection with the events that have taken place in certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts;
  7. To continue an inclusive national ­dialogue;
  8. To take measures to improve the humanitarian situation in Donbass;
  9. To ensure early local elections in accordance with the Ukrainian law “On temporary order of local self-governance, in particular districts of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts;”
  10. To withdraw illegal armed groups and military equipment, as well as mercenaries, from Ukraine;
  11. To adopt a program of economic recovery and reconstruction for the Donbass region; and
  12. To provide personal security for participants in the consultations.

In the two weeks following the implementation of the Minsk Protocol, reports of violations by both sides and even surges in violence were widespread. A follow-up memorandum was agreed to in Minsk by the same parties on 19 September. Some of its measures included were:

  • To pull heavy weaponry 15 kilometres back on each side of the frontline, ­creating a 30-kilometre buffer zone;
  • To ban offensive operations;
  • To ban flights by combat aircraft over the security zone;
  • To withdraw all foreign mercenaries from the conflict zone; and
  • To set up an OSCE mission to monitor implementation of the Minsk Protocol.


The aftermath of the battle for Donetsk Airport, 2014. (PHOTO: Dimitry Lovetsky/Associated Press)

Despite the intended reinforcement of the ceasefire plea with the follow-up memorandum, the Minsk I Agreement quickly disintegrated. Sporadic skirmishes in the following days culminated in the successful DPR assault of the government-held Donetsk Airport, beginning on 28 September and ending finally in January. The four-month long defence of the terminal by Ukrainian soldiers – nicknamed “cyborgs” by Kiev – has evoked a legendary symbolism by the national media, for their outgunned and outmanned ability to resist constant waves of attack, amidst a battle that has seen some of the worst violence of the war. With the capture of the airport by the DPR, all of the city of Donetsk was now in the hands of the separatists, despite the fledgling peace agreement.

Minsk II Agreement
The rapid collapse of the Minsk I Agreement in September saw a surge of heavy fighting throughout Donbass. A further attempt at securing peace was brokered between 11 and 12 February, with attendees including President Putin of Russia, President Poroshenko of Ukraine, Chancellor Merkel of Germany, and President Hollande of France, as well as DPR and LPR leaders Zakharchenko and Plotnitsky respectively. With negotiations continuing for 16 hours straight, President Hollande claimed that the plan was the “last chance” for a peaceful resolution of the conflict.

Key points of the new agreement included:

  • Immediate and full bilateral ceasefire;
  • Withdrawal of all heavy weapons by both sides;
  • Effective monitoring and verification regime for the ceasefire and withdrawal of heavy weapons;
  • From day one of the withdrawal, begin a dialogue on the holding of local elections;
  • Pardon and amnesty by banning any prosecution of figures involved in the Donetsk and Luhansk conflict;
  • Release of all hostages and other illegally detained people;
  • Unimpeded delivery of humanitarian aid to the needy, internationally supervised;
  • Restoration of full social and economic links with affected areas;
  • Full Ukrainian government control will be restored over the state border, throughout the conflict zone;
  • The withdrawal of all foreign armed groups, weapons, and mercenaries from Ukrainian territory; and
  • Constitutional reform in Ukraine, with adoption of a new constitution by the end of 2015.

Security Council Deliberations
On 17 February, in its 7,384th meeting, the Security Council met at UN headquarters in New York City. With China acting in its temporary role as President of the Council, the four additional permanent members included the representatives of the U.S., the UK, France, and Russia.

Additional members of the Council in attendance were the representatives of Angola, Chad, Chile, Jordan, Lithuania, Malaysia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Spain, and Venezuela.

Ukraine and Germany took part in the deliberations by invitation of the President. The agenda for the meeting was consideration of the text of a draft resolution submitted by Russia, with hopes of passing it into a Security Council resolution.

With 15 votes in favour for Minsk II, the draft passed unanimously as Resolution 2202 (2015). While seen as being excessively complicated (similar to the failed Minsk I Agreement) and a perceived attempt by Russia to transfer the blame as catalysts (if not facilitators) of the conflict, all members of the Council agreed that it was, indeed, better than nothing.

Two major issues had contributed to the tense deliberations – the downing of Flight MH17 in July 2014, and the status of the Ukrainian city of Debaltseve, which had continued to be under siege by Separatists as the agreement was drafted. The separatists did not consider the city as being part of the deal, as their assault was already underway by the time Minsk II was signed.

As of early March, those government forces still able to do so retreated from the city, at President Putin’s urging, and the city fell to rebel troops.

Promptly following its adoption, the Council President gave the floor to the permanent representative of Russia, Vitaly Churkin. Speaking in Russian, Mr. Churkin said that he was “grateful to the members of the Council for the unanimous adoption of the Russian Federation’s draft resolution in support of the arrangements to settle the Ukrainian crisis reached in Minsk on 12 February.”


Speaking in Russian, Mr. Churkin said that he was “grateful to the members of the Council for the unanimous adoption of the Russian Federation’s draft resolution in support of the arrangements to settle the Ukrainian crisis reached in Minsk on 12 February.”

Churkin said that the events within that territory “have been truly tragic,” and that the Minsk II protocol presented “a genuine opportunity for Ukraine to turn this tragic page in its history.”

He concluded his opening statements with a word of warning: “We most avoid the adoption of unilateral measures that would clearly contravene the letter and the spirit of the documents adopted in Minsk on 12 February.”

An example of such “unilateral measures” is found in Kiev’s recent request for a UN peacekeeping mission, something that the DPR, LPR, and Russia all cite as being not only counterproductive to peace efforts, but a deliberate violation of Minsk II.

While a formal decision has yet to be made on the topic of a potential peacekeeping operation, it is almost certain that Russia would veto this.

The vast majority of the opening statements from the permanent and temporary members of the Security Council alike deployed the same rhetoric – thanking the Council for convening its session, thanking Russia for spurring the peace draft, and reflecting on what Mr. Marchesi of Spain called, this “crucial moment in the evolution of the conflict in Ukraine.” For the most part, representatives expressed a complete and unreserved respect and collaboration for the contents of the resolution. Notable exceptions included the representatives of Lithuania, Malaysia, New Zealand, the UK, and the United States.

Speaking on behalf of Australia, Belgium, Canada, Germany, Indonesia, the Netherlands, and the Philippines, the representatives of Malaysia and New Zealand focused their opening statements by reminding the Council of their urgings that amnesty for separatists in eastern Ukraine does not extend to those who, as Mr. McLay of New Zealand stated, “illegally launched a surface-to-air missile at a civilian passenger aircraft, murdering 298 people on board”, in reference to MH17.

The most outspoken members of the Council, against the resolution’s contents, were those of the U.S. and Lithuania. Representative Murmokaité of Lithuania opened by saying that “it is with a heavy heart that we voted for today’s resolution […] with a clear understanding of the terrible toll that this uninvited war has imposed on Ukraine.” She reported the land grab by separatists of at least 550 square kilometres of Ukraine’s territory since the announcement of the original Minsk ceasefire in 2014. She made a clear and explicit reference to “Russian-sponsored militants” and “heavily armed criminals,” and said that the only way peace can be sustained is if “Russian troops and armaments […] be withdrawn from Ukraine’s territory.”

The U.S. representative, Ms. Samantha Power, invoked some of the strongest words for the resolution, the conflict, and the actions of Russia. She opened her statements with the following:

“We have gotten used to living in an upside-down world with respect to Ukraine. Russia speaks of peace and then fuels conflict. Russia signs agreements and then does everything within its power to undermine them. Russia champions the sovereignty of nations and then acts as if its neighbours’ borders do not exist. Yet even for those of us growing accustomed to living in an upside-down world, the idea that Russia – which manufactured and continues to escalate the violence in Ukraine – has submitted a resolution today calling for the conflict’s peaceful solution is ironic, to say the least.”


Permanent Representative of the U.S. to the UN, Samantha Power. (UN photo)

Ms. Power invoked stories of real people in Ukraine – a 73-year-old man named Aleksey Kravchenko who reportedly spends his nights huddled with his grandchildren in a bomb shelter in Debaltseve, amidst shelling by Russian-sponsored militants.” She spoke directly to the Russian representative, saying that “we look to Russia, which manufactured and fuelled this conflict, to leave the upside-down world it has created and to honour the resolution it introduced today in support of efforts to end it.”

Following opening statements by the Council members and those of Ukraine, which said it was placing its faith in the Security Council to “assume its responsibility at this crucial juncture in the conflict,” a tense exchange of dares and hyperbole took hold of the chamber. Seeing the evident dismay with the resolution, Mr. Churkin reported that he was “disappointed by the discussion, because some colleagues decided to begin with their usual rhetoric, which was often offensive.”

He singled out Ms. Power directly for her use of the term “upside-down world,” with the following comment: “She accused Russia of starting the crisis, but did we topple the legally elected President? Throughout all of the events that took place in Ukraine a year ago, Russia continually called for a bloodless political solution. We supported the 21 February agreement. We then insisted on its implementation, even after the lawfully elected President had been toppled.”

Mr. Churkin went on to say that “a German public opinion group conducted a poll among Crimean residents and came to the conclusion that 93% of the people in Crimea supported unification with Russia… 82% said that outright; 11% said they would prefer it; 4% were against it,” but he would not make further reference to this poll or the methodology or legitimacy of those behind it.

The session reached a near-boiling point when the President had to remind Council members that the meeting was “not an open debate.” The representatives of Lithuania and Russia continued to exchange rhetoric as to the latter’s suggestion that Kiev would have been better served to have merely “capitulated” its territory to the separatists when the conflict began.

With what was thought to have been the last words from any delegation, the representative of Ukraine said, “I am sorry, Mr. President, but what we have heard from our colleague [Mr. Churkin] is unacceptable. Our leaders met in Minsk and they made very clear statements. They supported very clear provisions, and we cannot agree with the interpretation of the Minsk agreements that has been heard from the Russian side. I am so sorry, but we are not here to launch a third round of Minsk negotiations and reinterpret what our leaders agreed upon.”

And finally, as the President readied to conclude the session, Churkin retorted with rapid words, so that his interpreters were barely able to keep pace. “The members of the Council have continued to provoke me. We are not interpreting anything. We are taking the Minsk agreements and interpreting them word by word, and we think that everyone should read the document word by word and implement it.”

Without further bombast, the President concluded the session and pounded his gavel into the desk mount. Mr. Churkin was out of his seat and headed to the door before either his aides could do the same, or his fellow delegates even rise to their feet.

For a resolution that was showcased on the world stage as a seemingly revolutionary compromise between nations, it was an unpleasant opening to the Minsk II ceasefire package – particularly for one that was passed unanimously. This, in conjunction with the separatists’ siege of Debaltseve now completed, and their assault on the port city of Mariupol still ongoing, there remains many evident gaps in the Minsk II protocol, as well as, perhaps more importantly, the long-term intentions of those who drafted it on both sides of the conflict.


Permanent Representative of Russia to the UN, Vitaly Churkin. (UN photo) The Security Council votes on 15 March 2014 in an emergency session on the disputed Crimea referendum – ultimately vetoed by Russia.  (UN photo)

As of 12 March, heavy weapons remain kilometres from the front lines, and Kiev has recently enjoyed several 24-hour periods without a soldier being killed. That being said, it was only a few shots that unleashed this crisis to begin with – and in a war defined by deception and (mis)information at both the operational level in Donbass and the strategic level in the Security Council – it is very possible that a few more could bring the conflict back into full force at any moment.

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Casey Brunelle is a member of the Primary Reserves.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Simulation Training for Frontline Officers
TECHNOLOGY PROFILE
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

It’s all over the news. Riots in the streets and increased tensions with police shootings. Debates about use-of-force are in the limelight, and law enforcement departments are being scrutinized for how they train officers for such scenarios. The limited availability of range time, the expense of range facility maintenance, the cost of live ammunition, and a technological evolution in training options have forced agencies to admit that simulated training has become as a more practical and cost-effective option. Training within a simulated environment allows an officer to immerse themselves in a true-to-life scenario that reproduces the same stress they would encounter on the streets. Ultimately this makes officers more effective and better prepared the next time they find themselves in an escalated event.

Today’s intelligent systems
As law enforcement training grows in importance, it is critical that a comprehensive training curriculum be in place – one that integrates marksmanship training and judgmental training scenarios.

Today’s intelligent simulation systems are designed to provide real-time data for after-action reporting on how the shooter performed. The system recognizes officer presence, verbal commands, empty-handed techniques, as well as use of batons, chemical sprays, tasers and deadly force.

Along with an effective trainer, today’s simulation technology can escalate or de-escalate a training scenario based on the instructor’s pre-determined lesson plan and how the student is actually engaging the scenario. These responses, similar to shooting at a target and seeing where the bullet hits, can be seen in replay.

But in simulation training it’s not as much about how students reacted, it’s about why they responded in the manner they did, and their ability to explain their decisions.

“Today’s virtual training systems are about recreating an environment where an officer is forced to make the same split-second decisions in a non-lethal training environment that they may have to make in a potentially lethal or escalated situation out in the field,” explains Eric Perez, Director of Virtual Systems at Meggitt Training Systems.

“What’s critical with these systems or tools is that they are used to their full potential for both marksmanship and judgmental training, and are integrated into a full training curriculum.”

Training to its fullest potential
Meggitt Training Systems’ FATS L7 provides marksmanship exercises, weapons handling, remediation and preparation between qualifications, along with judgmental and use-of-force training.

Using the marksmanship mode, the shooter runs through a pre-determined course of fire on various static or moving imagery depending upon the training curriculum of the department.

Paul Romeo, Business Development Director of Meggitt Training Systems Quebec, strongly encourages departments to use their system to its fullest potential. “From a weapons handling perspective, you are not expending rounds; it’s a teaching tool. You can explain and then immediately train the officer on the basic fundamentals of shooting. The officers can see their shots in real-time,” Romeo says.

“They can see how they are handling and firing their weapon as well as muzzle location and other critical elements for proper shooting fundamentals. With the assistance of an instructor, all of the information that the FATS L7 and the weapon provides helps shooters self-diagnose – they don’t have to expend several hundred rounds trying to figure out what they are doing wrong.”

Numerous provincial and municipal Police services and colleges across Canada use Meggitt’s wireless weapons the company has named BlueFire. Customers like them because of the very “real” feel, and that is because they are real. “These are actual weapons that have been purchased from the gun manufacturer and then stripped of their firing components, which get replaced with electronics that provide real-time data back to the shooter and instructor through the system,” Perez says.

“The BlueFire weapons are critical to true-to-life training,” he adds. “It doesn’t make sense for officers to train with plastic weapons or with magazines that have limitless rounds when that is not the reality out in the field. This leads to negative training.

“Because these are actual weapons, they are true to the form, fit, and function of the duty weapons the officer’s use in the field. The weapons weigh the same, and all the components (such as the safety and trigger) are in exactly the same position as they are on their duty weapon. Realistic training is essential to preparedness when officers face hostile situations in the field.”

In addition to the real-time data provided by the BlueFire weapons, one of the primary benefits of these wireless weapons is the ability for officers to move freely within the training space and still send and receive feedback on the shooter. For departments using a tethered weapon, they are connected by a cable that sends data to and from the weapon, but restricts movement to a fixed location and distance.

Both weapons systems have their advantages, according to Perez, but most agencies are moving to the wireless technology.

How it works
While many departments use simulation systems for both marksmanship and scenario-based training, the majority use them for judgmental and use-of-force training.

The system gives the trainer the ability to induce stress and see how the officer interacts with participants within the video scenario. As mentioned earlier, the trainer can manipulate the situation by escalating or de-escalating the situation depending on how the officer reacts and engages the suspect.

Using the system tablet, the trainer controls the scenario by reacting to the officer’s commands. If the officer reacts appropriately, the instructor can then choose to select a “branch” where the assailant complies. Alternatively, the trainer could choose to see how the officer would react to a use-of-force situation, and select a branch where the officer needs to engage with a variety of tools such as a taser, chemical spray or a baton.

The FATS L7 comes with a library of scenarios ranging from traffic stops to active shooters. Created after much research and consultation with police forces, the scenarios were filmed from the officer’s perspective. When the scenarios were being filmed, all possible outcomes or reactions were also filmed. Called “branches”, they provide a multitude of options for a trainer to test the officer’s marksmanship and judgment skills.

Simulation systems can aid in officer preparedness, de-escalating a situation, and ensuring proper use-of-force. The rapid-response required in virtual simulation scenarios serve the officers well, providing heightened readiness in stressful situations.

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The State of Arctic & West Coast SAR
K. JOSEPH SPEARS
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 3)

This year has been busy one for Canadian Search and Rescue (SAR) professionals (paid and unpaid), as well as First Nations on Canada’s West Coast and in the Arctic. 

The October 2015 sinking of the Canadian certified whale watching passenger vessel MV Leviathan II near Tofino, British Columbia, with the loss of six lives and the rescue of 21 passengers and crew, shone a light on Canada’s search and rescue capabilities. A month earlier, the sinking of fishing vessel Atlantic Charger in Hudson Strait had a similar impact on Canada’s East Coast. 


The Canadian Transport Canada certified whale watching vessel Leviathan II sank off Tofino B.C. on October 25. 2014.

Global media attention and outpouring of grief focused attention on marine search and rescue and marine response and its importance to coastal communities. The connection was, and is, undeniable. Ecotourism and fishing, both of which depend on renewable marine resources, are critically important to the economy around Canada’s three oceans. 

British Columbia’s marine ecotourism, for example, generates over $1 billion a year to the economy. The same applies to a developing Arctic fishery. The Leviathan II also highlighted the critical role that first responders and commercial vessels of opportunity play, and the fact that all marine response, while it may be federally led, is local in nature. Issues on Canada’s West Coast and in the Arctic can be 
overlaid around Canada’s four oceans as a template for further action and improvement. We need to analyse them for lessons learned and not be afraid to ask the difficult questions.

Canada’s SAR capability is part of its risk management approach to ocean governance. The new government will need to consider how we can deliver effective, federally-led SAR services in a cost-effective manner, and build from incidents that highlight the need to have a robust national search and rescue plan and focus on a risk-based analysis that is regional in nature.

These orders from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau have been clearly set out in mandate letters to the Minister of Transport, the Hon. Marc Garneau and the Minister of Fisheries and the Coast Guard, the Honourable Hunter Tootoo. 

While these words may seem simple, their implementation is very complex, and search and rescue capability plays a big part in this very clear call for action. The response will involve input from many stakeholders around our country. 

One of the key priorities in the PM’s letter to the Minister of Transport is to: “Work with the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard and the Minister of Environment and Climate Change to improve marine safety.”

These search and rescue incidents and their analyses provide an opportunity to strengthen the Canadian SAR regime, which has been referred to as a “major” issue by the international shipping community. Incidents in 2015 highlight gaps in Canada’s SAR capability and where it needs to be expanded.


The Ahoushat people responded immediately to the flare, and the village quickly mobilized for the SAR rescue and then recovery using a flotilla of small vessels.

National Search and Rescue Secretariat
The National Search and Rescue Secretariat (NSS) has been moved to the purview of the department of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, under Minister Ralph Goodale. The National SAR Secretariat role (that was developed following the sinking of the oil rig Ocean Ranger) was to develop Canada’s thinking and capability on search and rescue. For many years before this, the NSS reported to the Minister of National Defence and, while it did some good work, has never reached its full potential nor fulfilled the intention of Parliament to create a multi-jurisdictional think tank to look at all search and rescue in a holistic fashion. 

The incident near Tofino highlighted the need for integrative thinking between all levels of government – federal, provincial, municipal, and regional – plus First Nations, the private sector, and NGOs. All have an important role to play, and need to be brought into the discussion. We need to look creatively at how we can deliver both the search and the rescue services across this land as fast as necessary so the missions do not turn into search and recovery. Our SAR professionals are the best in the world, and we need to provide the supportive political leadership and show that the will at the federal level is there.

International SAR obligations
Canada’s SAR obligations cannot be considered solely from a domestic viewpoint. There are international obligations for maritime and aviation SAR under international agreements, as well as under the recently signed the Agreement on Cooperation on Aeronautical and Maritime Search and Rescue in the Arctic (“the SAR Agreement”). As part of the SAR Agreement, Canada extended its search and rescue region to the North Pole. This international treaty was signed in May 2011 by the member states of the Arctic Council in Nuuk, Greenland. 

In addition, as a coastal nation, Canada has clear obligations to provide search and rescue capability under the Law of the Sea Convention. The combination of these agreements requires Canada to have a capable SAR capability which takes sustained funding, commitment, as well as technical development and international cooperation. 

Arctic Risks are viewed by insurers as ‘Very Real’
Here is what the World Maritime News reported at a 2014 conference: “As more and more ships venture into the Arctic, resources to cope with SAR operations, along with potential environmental cleanups, are lacking.”

Speaking at a conference in Hong Kong, Stein Are Hansen, Head of Department, Loss Prevention and Emergency Response, Norwegian Hull Club, said: “Humans make mistakes. Have we really thought about the risks in the Arctic? From the Clipper Adventurer to the Titanic, there have been huge accidents in the Arctic. You can prepare yourself to death but are we prepared for waking up to seeing oil on a polar bear on the front page of the New York Times? There are few search and rescue capabilities in the Arctic. We will soon be responsible for rescuing people up to the North Pole. We need more training and sophisticated equipment to help deal with the potential disasters. For example, fuel stations for helicopters.” 

Last year there were 71 transit voyages in the region, a significant increase over previous years. There were also over 11,000 flights over the Arctic in 2012. Government leadership is required to provide the necessary infrastructure for the safety of life at Sea. It remains a high priority focus of the Arctic Council and the International Maritime Organization (IMO). Canada no longer has the luxury of just talking about these issues, it needs action on Arctic SAR.

Canada’s SAR Pillars
SAR response cuts across a variety of federal departments (such as Transport Canada, Canadian Coast Guard, Public Safety and National Defence), municipal responders and civilian volunteers. Private sector organizations also come into play when there is a failure of any one of a number of systems, such as when “vessels of opportunity” rescue survivors before official responders arrive on scene. 

This summer we are going to see the cruise ship M/V Crystal Serenity transiting the Northwest Passage with 1000 passengers on board and 800 crew members. This raises important questions about SAR rescue planning at the preventative stage and how potential issues can be dealt with. 

We have seen some of the challenges when the cruise ship Carnival Triumph lost propulsion in the Gulf of Mexico as a result of an engine room fire, and was towed to a port in Mobile Alabama from Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, with the U.S. Coast Guard standing by, as the passengers remained on board. That incident gave rise to a U.S. government claim of $700,000 for services provided. An earlier incident involving Carnival Splendor gave rise to a claim involving $3.4 million for costs incurred by the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard. These marine incidents were in relatively calm and warm waters. In the Arctic, these costs would be many times greater. Cruise ships potentially can give rise to major incidents as was seen with the mega cruise ship Costa Concordia grounding off the Italian coast. 


Transportation Safety Board investigates Tofino tragedy.

Ahoushat Spirit-Tofino 
We need to celebrate what occurred off Plover Reef in the traditional territory and waters of the Ahousaht people. While halibut fishing late on a Sunday afternoon, Ken “Eagle Eyes” Lucas and Clarence “Smitty” Smith spotted a flare from a life raft that had self-deployed from the overturned whale watching vessel Leviathan II. They immediately transited to the breaking reef (a nasty piece of water) and tried to make VHF radio contact with the Canadian Coast Guard. However, they could not be heard on the marine emergency radio frequency VHF16. Quickly, they relayed the mayday call to their local working channel, VHF 68. This triggered a community response that saw over half the village participating and supporting rescue and recovery operations. They had developed their own village emergency response plan, without question and without funding. They are unpaid SAR professionals. They are true heroes.

After the rescue of 21 survivors was completed, the Ahousaht people, under the direction of the RCMP Marine Unit, continued to search for the missing Australian passenger. It is part of their culture not to leave anybody at sea. This was an emotional and difficult situation for the communities of both Tofino and Ahousaht, and showcased a powerful community spirit. 

This missing person search conducted under the direction of Royal Canadian Mounted Police marine unit volunteer divers from their underwater recovery team, relied on the people of the village of Ahousaht,  along with air support provided by Transport Canada’s state-of-the-art surveillance aircraft. While outside the rubric of search and rescue, the recovery of missing persons from any marine disaster is incredibly important to the families and highlights once again the strong sense of community. It was difficult and dangerous work diving among heavy ocean swells and kelp beds, with 2000-pound sea lions swimming in these waters. It’s not for the faint of heart. The people of the Ahousaht have a sacred and spiritual connection to these waters, and their history and long-standing tradition is never to leave anyone at sea. They weren’t asked to do this difficult work. They volunteered. We need to channel that same spirit in the development of the national search and rescue plan.

Russian adventurer crashed
The SAR season commenced with a successful SAR rescue. A Russian adventurer, Sergey Ananov, used a single engine helicopter to transit around the Arctic Circle. The Robinson R22 helicopter left Iqaluit, Nunavut on 27 July 2015 enroute to Nuuk, Greenland, but ran into engine problems over Davis Strait. While the pilot was able to land on an ice flow in Davis Strait, that ice flow was also home to a number of polar bears. For 30 hours he fended off the bears while a search was mounted, with the Halifax SAR team making use of all available resources. CCGS Pierre Radisson, a medium-duty icebreaker commissioned in 1978 was in the area with an onboard helicopter. When it heard the mayday it steamed towards the last known position and managed to locate and airlift Sergey, who was down to his last three flares. 

Staying afloat & staying alive
On 22 September 2015, the Newfoundland Fishing Vessel Atlantic Charger, a state-of-the-art dragger, sank at the entrance of the Hudson Strait in Canada’s Arctic waters. These treacherous waters are notorious for a large tidal flow. What caused the vessel to sink is presently unknown. 

Crew members abandoned ship in a life raft and were able to activate an emergency beacon which aided searchers in locating the vessel position. In response, a SAR aircraft was able to drop a radio to the survivors. MV Arctic (owned and operated by Fednav of Montréal) and Greenland trawler Pamiut responded to the distress call and were able to rescue the crew members. Arctic was the first to arrive on the scene, but was forced to abort its rescue efforts due to heavy seas, but not before launching a dry life raft to provide temporary relief to the crew members. Finally, Pamiut arrived on the scene and rescued the men by picking them up with a Zodiac craft it had managed to launch despite the dangerously high seas. The men were subsequently transferred to Newfoundland-bound fishing vessel Katsheshuk which made it back to Harbour Grace days later.

It was an “awesome rescue” and highlights the key role that vessels of opportunity play in Arctic marine SAR. But it was also a very close call, and a hair-raising rescue for the crew given the sea state conditions at the time – 50 foot swells. At this time of the year, and without the ability of “vessels of opportunity” to respond, the outcome would certainly have been tragic. In this case, all the crew survived. However, both the owner and the master of the vessel have raised serious questions about Canada’s Arctic and offshore SAR capability. It remains unknown whether or not there was an RCAF SAR Cormorant helicopter based in Gander available.

Moving Forward
The above incidents illustrate “everyday” Arctic/West Coast search and rescue activities, which will be increasing in frequency as activity steadily grows in the North.

As can be seen by the roles played by the Greenland vessels and the commercial vessel operated by Fednav, a highly experienced Arctic operator which plies these waters on a regular basis, the age-old tradition of mariners helping mariners in ­distress, provided a solid foundation and successful SAR outcome. There is no doubt that this time-honoured tradition will continue. However, it is not enough, and it is the legal and moral responsibility of government to provide more, and more capable, resources to enhance the effectiveness of Canada’s SAR activities over waters and territories bordering its land mass, and in remote and hostile locations. For example, it shouldn’t take over more than a decade for new fixed-wing SAR aircraft to be chosen. The aircraft overflying Atlantic Charger were likely in excess of 30 years old. Icebreaker CCG Pierre Radisson is 37 years old. 

The people of Ahoushat have shown a new and renewed way forward on Canada’s SAR capability... use our First Nations people more effectively for a SAR capability.

Canada’s new government has made it very clear that action is required and is supported by federal leadership. We need to take a hard look at these issues and a variety of solutions such as those proposed by the Shipping Federation of Canada with respect to alternative procurement of icebreakers; of search and rescue; and empowering coastal communities. We need to set the stage for the highest probability of successful outcomes. It is a question of leadership. Canada’s new government is up to the challenge. 

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K. Joseph Spears, Principal of the Horseshoe Bay Marine Group, has been involved in SAR from an operational and policy perspective for many years. In 1980 he was involved in a successful multi-agency rescue involving CCG Pierre Radisson in Hudson Strait and the Canadian Forces. Joe can be reached at kjs@oceanlawcanada.com

© FrontLine Security 2015

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Hard Landing at YHZ
K. JOSEPH SPEARS
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 1)

The so-called “hard” landing  of an Air Canada A320 Airbus on final approach to Runway 05 at Halifax Stanfield International Airport (YHZ), on March 28th, has called into question airport emergency response capabilities at the airport, and the larger issue of provision of navaids to strengthen international aviation safety.

Ironically, on the day of the flight AC624 incident, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada was celebrating its 25th anniversary. However, the questions that need to be asked about emergency services at this airport go beyond the mandate of the Transportation Safety Board investigation. Applying the old adage “any landing you walk away from is a good one” makes us thankful there was no loss of life. That does not mean we should, but we should not be complacent. The response community needs to look critically at this incident and how it impacts aviation response writ large.

The airspace over Eastern Canada is no stranger to disastrous incidents. In 1998, Swiss Air 111 was in visual range of Halifax International Airport at the time of its declared emergency. The pilots chose to dump fuel over St. Margaret’s Bay, however, the onboard fire overcame the MD-11 aircraft, resulting in the loss of 229 souls as it crashed near Peggy’s Cove. A Boeing 747 cargo plane crashed on the same approach in 2004, with the loss of nine lives. The world has recently experienced a variety of high profile air crashes – Air France AF477, Malaysian Air  MH370 and MH17, Air Asia QZ8501, and Germanwings 9525 – reminding us the 21st century is not immune to major aircraft incidents.

The Halifax airport is a major diversion airport for transatlantic flights between North America and northern Europe, and the North Atlantic is the world’s busiest oceanic airspace in the world. At any one time, there may be up to 1,200 passenger aircraft traveling in Canadian controlled airspace (Gander Oceanic ATC) in the North Atlantic.

Canada has aviation obligations under international law, in particular, the various conventions administered by the Montreal-based International Civil Aviation organization (IACO) with respect to accident investigation as well as search and rescue. Halifax, Gander, Newfoundland, Goose Bay, Labrador, Iqaluit, and Nunavut runways are critical components of an international web of diversion airports that are used from time to time when there is an in-flight emergency. We saw that in spades after 9/11. While they are not often used, they are a critical component of international aviation safety.

At Halifax International Airport and other major airports, we need to ensure that state-of-the-art instrument landing systems on all the runways are present and deployed, so that international flights that may be diverted and in a declared state of emergency (which more often than not occurs in bad weather), have every advantage for a safe landing. The south end of runway 05 did not have an instrument landing system.

As for emergency response at Halifax International Airport, had AC 624 gone down in the rough and rocky glaciated terrain of the adjacent Waverley Game Sanctuary, where there are no roads, this would have required a complex search and rescue operation in deep snow using fixed and rotary wing aircraft of the Royal Canadian Air Force and military personnel, along with ground search individuals under the national Search and Rescue program. Halifax Regional Search and Rescue (formerly Waverley Ground Search and Rescue), headquartered not far from runway 05, is one of Canada’s leading and oldest ground search teams.

AC624 should be a wake-up call to integrate safety management into airport management. Such incidents highlight the need to make use of all skilled (paid and unpaid) SAR and First Responder professionals. It is important to perform exercises simulating mass casualty aviation incidents around our major airports, with the Canadian Armed Forces taking the lead on aviation SAR.

It is reasonable to anticipate that aircraft incidents at either airports or remote crash sites in the Northern hemisphere will expose survivors to harsh winter weather or worse, Arctic conditions, depending on the time of year. Passenger survivability is a serious issue that needs to be examined more closely to develop the necessary protocols; to have response equipment, including ground transportation, available; and to minimize passenger exposure to the elements. Better planning needs to be in place to respond to the unthinkable, but possible, especially around airport runways where accidents are most likely to take place.

The Halifax incident provides a lens through which to examine passenger survivability after a crash. Canada should use the AC624 incident to rethink the adoption of state-of-the-art technology to help prevent such accidents and to improve emergency preparedness. It’s all about safety and security.

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Joe Spears is a safety consultant, maritime barrister, and Managing Director of the Horseshoe Bay Marine Group, West Vancouver, Canada. He has acted as legal counsel and consultant for Transport Canada and has assisted the National Search and Rescue Secretariat on Arctic search and rescue.
© FrontLine Security 2015

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Mission Success or Warm & Fuzzy?
KEVIN HAMPSON
© 2015 FrontLine Security (Vol 10, No 2)

Is the paramilitary culture and its inherent warrior ethos incongruous with today’s society?

Many generations of Canadians saw the red-coated Mountie as a symbol of virtue and patriotism. That image has now been tarnished by a flood of allegations of harassment from female officers and civilian employees. The RCMP have already taken various measures to address the problem, including increasing the quota – or “target,” as the force calls it – for female recruits, with the aim of increasing female members from the current 21% to 30% by 2025. Other measures include expediting the complaints process. Critics, however, say more radical changes are needed to root out harassment and bullying, which, they argue, are ingrained in the RCMP’s paramilitary culture. That culture is “just not consistent with the way society has evolved,” said Senator Grant Mitchell who, along with MP Judy Sgro, released a report on harassment in the RCMP last year.

“The idea of a tough, harsh, suck-it-up kind of culture, in my experience, seems to create a culture that is vulnerable to harassment, and that’s just not acceptable,” said Mitchell in a phone interview. “Women should be able to feel safe working in the RCMP, and so should men.”

Some women have come forward with allegations of appalling behaviour, including rape. However, although the issue of sexual harassment has dominated headlines, the majority of complaints involve other types of allegations, such as bullying, unfair treatment, gender discrimination, and a sense of being humiliated or disrespected. More than 360 female officers and civilian employees asked to join a class-action lawsuit to deal with allegations ranging from rape and physical assault to sexist comments and gender discrimination. David Klein, the lawyer representing the women, told the Canadian Press in June that some of the allegations “are too small to warrant individual litigation.”

A 2013 report by the Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP found that, out of 718 workplace harassment complaints between 2005 and 2011, about 90% were allegations of bullying, while 4% were sexual harassment. Out of the 1,091 harassment complaints received from 671 different complainants between 2005 and 2013, 598 involved “interpersonal deportment,” which includes demeaning comments and bullying; another 427 concerned abuse of authority; 40 were discrimination, and only 26 were related to sexual harassment.

Senator Mitchell’s report, which outlines testimony from forums held in Ottawa, Vancouver, Edmonton and St. John’s in 2013, includes some troubling allegations of assault. However, most of the accusations involve lower-level complaints, including “receiving crass and inappropriate emails regarding the participant’s sexuality” and “being on the receiving end of practical jokes.”

When RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson suggested in 2013 to a Senate committee that some allegations were “outlandish,” he was rebuked by Senator Mitchell. It is worth noting, however, that much of what goes on in a military or paramilitary organization could be perceived as harassment and bullying. “Boot camp,” as it is colloquially known, is practically synonymous with a drill sergeant screaming obscenities in recruits’ faces.

In one high-profile lawsuit, a B.C. Mountie said she suffered from post-traumatic stress and bulimia as a result of being subjected to humiliating and offensive comments, which began during basic training in 1989. Her statement of claim, filed in 2012, alleged that she had to go on ‘fat parade’, where corporals told her she was fat. If she selected a dessert in the cafeteria, she was yelled at, the statement said.

Ron Lewis, a co-founder of the RCMP Veterans Women’s Council, acknowledges that that sort of treatment has always been a normal part of basic training – indeed, he says he went through far worse during his own basic training in the late 1960s. However, the fact is that women are more sensitive than men, Lewis says. “That’s why they talk about cultural change. Because the culture is rough-and-tumble and harsh and in-your-face, and that has to change when it comes to women.”

Men who have been in the army often tell stories about the lewd insults that their corporals and sergeants screamed at them – particularly during basic training. However, while men tend to find this aspect of military culture humorous, many women are deeply disturbed by it. Lewis recalls, some time after the first women were admitted into the force in 1974, one drill instructor who found himself the subject of complaints from female recruits because of what he yelled on the parade square: “When I say ‘attention,’ I want to hear 32 pussies snapping shut!”

“Many women find the use of such demeaning language offensive, humiliating and denigrating,” said former Supreme Court Justice Marie Deschamps in her recent report on harassment in the Armed Forces. The report, commissioned by the Chief of the Defence Staff in the wake of disturbing media stories about sexual assault and bullying in the military, echoes the criticism of the RCMP.

After consulting with 700 people, Deschamps found that the most common complaints are related to what she describes as “a hostile, sexualized environment” within the Armed Forces, “characterized by the frequent use of swear words, […] discriminatory comments with respect to the abilities of women,” lewd behaviour, and unwanted touching. Deschamps recommends sweeping measures intended to move the Armed Forces away from its macho military culture. Leadership, she says, should crack down severely on the use of offensive language – “a critical step in reforming the culture.” To help achieve this, the report recommends broadening the military’s definition of sexual harassment, so that it includes “sexual comments or jokes that are not necessarily addressed to a particular person, but which create a negative sexualized environment.”

Most men in the focus groups thought the idea of enforcing politically correct language in the military was “ridiculous,” Deschamps noted. Indeed, efforts to police language and re-educate people often create resentment and can appear ideologically-driven. Last fall, about 1,000 undergraduate students at the Royal Military College were ordered to attend a workshop on sexual harassment during a weekend day off. The lecture was delivered by Julie Lalonde, a self-described “social justice activist” and “feminist buzzkill.” Lalonde complained that she was laughed at, disrespected, catcalled and whistled at. One third-year cadet told the CBC that, when pressed, Lalonde maintained that if a man and a woman got drunk and had sex, the man could be accused of sexual assault. “At this point all respect for the presenter was lost, and she struggled to carry on with the presentation in the face of people ignoring her,” the cadet was quoted as saying.

A number of people interviewed by Deschamps said sexual assaults are more likely to occur in barracks. It follows that sex-segregated barracks should significantly reduce the incidence of assault. However, Deschamps dismisses the idea of making such changes, saying “incidents of sexual harassment do not appear to be limited to particular locations or hours.”

One common-sense step is to impose moderation when it comes to the consumption of alcohol. Until recently, navy ships and submarines allowed access to beer, wine and soft alcohol during meals while at sea. Vice-Admiral Mark Norman, head of the Royal Canadian Navy, ended that late last year and took other practical measures to discourage excessive drinking. “In 95% of the cases where people get into trouble, they have been drinking to excess, so there is a relationship there,” he told FrontLine Defence (2015 #1) during a comprehensive interview about the sweeping reforms of cultural rules and expectations within the Canadian Navy.

Shortly after taking office, in a July letter sent to all members of the Canadian Forces the new Chief of the Defence Staff, General Vance, said that although individual commanders are already taking action, these efforts need to be co-ordinated in order to implement all of the Deschamps recommendations. He is calling the new focus on ending sexual harassment “Operation Honour.”

These actions on the part of military leaders indicate a reformed culture is being strongly promoted from within, but what about the law enforcement sector?

The Mitchell/Sgro report on the RCMP draws similar conclusions to the Deschamps report. Among other things, it recommends establishing a civilian body to supervise and govern the RCMP, setting up an ombudsman to investigate complaints, and developing indicators to weed out potential recruits who may be sexist.

It also recommends the force “modernize” its strategic vision, mission statement, and statement of diversity awareness, to promote “an environment of inclusion and equality.” Officers’ attitudes should be monitored throughout their careers, and leaders who believe in “outdated notions of paramilitary authority […] must be identified and corrected,” the report advises.

Debate over the wisdom of such measures has been non-existent in the media. Most fundamentally, from a mission-success perspective, there’s no logical or practical reason to see paramilitary culture as outdated and, in fact, evidence suggests it is as relevant now as ever. From an evolutionary perspective, the paramilitary culture is an adaptation to the kinds of threats such organizations exist to eliminate.

In The Descent of Man, Charles Darwin wrote: “A tribe including many members who, from possessing in a high degree the spirit of patriotism, fidelity, obedience, courage, and sympathy, were always ready to aid one another, and to sacrifice themselves for the common good, would be victorious over most other tribes; and this would be natural selection.” At a time when enforcement officers are confronting terrorism, gangs, active-shooter events, and increasingly well-armed petty criminals, the idea that it would be helpful to abolish the force’s paramilitary ethos is questionable.

The demand for cultural transformation tends to rest on the assumption that military or paramilitary culture specifically picks on women. Reality may be less black-and-white and not strictly gender-based.

Critics point to higher rates of attrition and PTSD among female officers, as well as the harassment allegations, as an indictment of paramilitary culture. However, even among the general population women have a higher prevalence of fear and anxiety disorders. A meta-analysis conducted in 2006 by researchers David F. Tolin and Edna B. Foa found that women are twice as likely to meet the diagnostic criteria for PTSD, even though men experience more events that are potentially traumatic. Further, even when isolating specific categories of trauma – combat, assault, disasters, fires, accidents – the results showed a higher risk of PTSD among female participants and a greater severity of symptoms. The report, published by the American Psychological Association, analyzed 290 studies conducted between 1980 and 2005.

Dr. Anna Baranowski, founder of the Traumatology Institute, based in Toronto, believes men suffer just as much from PTSD – it’s just that they tend to hide it because of the way they’re socialized.

“Women are designated certain roles in this culture, one of them being that of a care giver. Men have a different kind of role that is culturally engendered, [which includes] being able to just bear it and not complain about it,” Dr. Baranowski said. As a result, a sense of shame compels men to hide their suffering, she added.

However, research in neuroscience and evolutionary psychology suggests that gender roles have a basis in biology and evolution. For example, in a 2007 study, neurologist J.J. Wang and other researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine found that men’s and women’s brains react differently to stress.

In women, stress induced the “tend-and-befriend” response, with increased activity in brain regions involved in emotion. In contrast, men reacted with a “fight-or-flight” response. Prehistoric men may have had to confront a threat either by fighting it or fleeing, whereas women may have responded to adversity by nurturing offspring and affiliating with social groups that maximize the survival of the species, a Penn Medicine news release explained. As a result, says evolutionary psychologist Mark Van Vugt, men have evolved a “warrior psychology,” which makes them, more so than women, inclined towards competition, aggression, hierarchy and group loyalty.


For many people and soldiers, aggresive slogans such as "we take what we want" are meant to help them mentally steel themselves for extreme danger.

That may be so, says clinical psychologist Caroline LeBlanc, but women still have qualities that are beneficial to policing. “Their skills and the abilities they present are phenomenal because they do have empathy and interpersonal skills more naturally,” said LeBlanc, who works with officers suffering from PTSD in Charlottetown.

However, it is in the nature of police