A security expert describes his antiterrorism methodology for companies and nongovernment organizations, arising out of his work for the United Nations in the Middle East and Africa.
***** The Sword and the Shield: Antiterrorism Planning for Corporations and NGOs. By Ross Johnson, CPP; self-published, www.atplanningbook.com PDF, 136 pages; $25.
Terrorism has become a national security preoccupation in the Western world and has also fostered a billion-dollar industry focused on countering it. Most of this industry deals with technology, but a portion has focused on the analytical side of the equation. The Sword and the Shield: Antiterrorism Planning for Corporations and NGOs is an example of the latter.
Author Ross Johnson, a former Canadian military officer who now supervises security for a power company operating in Canada and the United States, has written this book as an adjunct to his Web site and to explain his own system of antiterrorism planning and prevention. Focusing on the private sector and nongovernmental organizations, he applies insights gleaned from years of working with the United Nations in the Middle East and Africa.
Johnson’s methodology has five components: the threat or vulnerability assessment; selection of appropriate preventive security measures; observation and countersurveillance; random security measures; and response. While the material is not new, it is adapted to a wide range of situations—from kidnappings to maritime piracy—and reflects Johnson’s perspective about what terrorism is, how terrorists operate, and how organizations can effectively thwart this threat.
Johnson includes a number of analytic tools that can help organizations involved in specific areas, such as food or drugs, along with some tools that have general applicability. Experienced security professionals will recognize the essentials behind many of them, but all those involved in the field can benefit from the different perspective Johnson brings to bear in this book.
Reviewer: Mayer Nudell, CSC (Certified Security Consultant), is an independent consultant on crisis management, contingency planning, travel security, and related issues. He is also an adjunct professor at Webster University. His publications include The Handbook for Effective Emergency and Crisis Management and No One a Neutral: Political Hostage-Taking in the Modern World. He is a member of ASIS International.