Steve Smith, Founder & CEO, Global Situational Awareness, speaks to SJUK about the latest global intelligence and how groups are working together to achieve their aims.
One key trend that we are seeing recently in our global intelligence analysis is groups that were started for different purposes increasingly working together to achieve their aims based on a shared ideology.
This can be seen clearly in the current UK Protest movement – traditionally issues like the Israeli- Palestinian conflict and climate change groups have operated in silos.
However, what is very interesting recently is that groups like Just Stop Oil and Palestine Action have actively been staging joint protests. In fact, BP experienced just such a protest this week at the St James office.
We expect to see more groups with a largely left-wing base looking to leverage the sheer numbers of Pro Palestine supporters to increase the size of their own footprint.
We are already seeing this on the other end of the political landscape where far right groups looked to capitalise on a largely Pro Israel march to boost their own support.
Our analysts predict more protest groups of larger size and more direct action as a result. This impacts policing and policy making and maybe even who voters trust at the next election.
CSO’s should be looking at online chatter and whether they are directly or indirectly linked to protests and make sure they have the best intelligence in advance of an angry mob on their doorstep.
The other key trend I wanted to talk about was the need for a more cohesive relationship between traditional security and cyber security teams within large organisations.
Social Engineering which occurs in the grey area between the two is massively on the rise.
If criminals or malicious actors can gain physical access to your premises or data centres via social engineering, then the impact moves from cyberspace to the real world very fast.
This also extends outside of one organisation with supply chain and partners being used to compromise security.
The days of multiple systems and interfaces are in the past and having a true common operating procedure to react fast and decisively is a driver for nearly all our clients.
Whilst the technology is a vital element, we often remind customers that robust crisis management and security playbooks and plans is just as essential.
As is the ability to stress test those plans under pressure. A useful analogy on the future of crisis management and security planning comes from the famous Mike Tyson quote “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face”.
We’d like to advise all our customers and prospects to not wait for the punch in the face to come to start the planning and to consider if the plan will stand up in the face of real-life pressure.
The changing global landscape and the need for adaptability and resilience planning remain ever presents – the nature of the changes and the exact challenges they bring is anything but predictable.
All at Global Situational Awareness and I wish you a fruitful 2024.
Steve is an experienced Security and Risk Director, with an intelligent approach towards security and risk management and a proven track record of delivering high level security for top tier global businesses.