The Warning Project has been closely following the range of developments related to the challenge of effectively communicating security threats to those at risk or potential risk. New technologies are giving us amazing communication capacity that we could only imagine a few years ago. But using that capacity effectively and efficiently to achieve our primary goal: getting useful information to those at risk and those concerned, is proving more complicated than first imagined.
Check out this article on a recent false alarm of an “active attacker on the Carleton University campus” which happened in January, 2019. Warning Project Director John Rainford wrote a piece on the event and proposed some novel ideas to address future threat situations. Perhaps new technologies require new thinking:
Speaking of false alarms, few have had higher international profile than the result of an staff mistake sending out “Ballistic missile threat inbound to Hawaii. Seek immediate shelter. This is not a drill,” to the citizens of Hawaii.
The situation was too important to not explore further, which is what Josh Greenberg and John Rainford did in the following article:
But whether on a relatively small or grand scale, communicating active shooter threats or other emergencies, however challenging, must remain an organizational priority. Developing systems, expertise in how to best use them, not to mention learning from our success and failures is the way we’ll get better.