Olympic Security

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Olympic Security Measures

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Olympic Security

  1. 1. Helping Canadian businesses secure their data, facilities, assets & staff<br /> <br />Securing the Olympic Games<br />The protocols, methods & technologies could fill volumes<br />By William M. Besse<br />The world's attention is now on Vancouver for the 21st Olympic Winter Games. The City of Vancouver has been preparing for these competitions since it won the bid in 2003. Many factors are considered when planning an event of this magnitude and at the top of the list is the monumental task of securing the facilities and infrastructure for the athletes and hundreds of thousands of spectators at these games.<br /> <br />In the past, incidents have arisen which beg the question “is it even possible to make the games completely secure?” The Munich games are still in people’s minds, as is the bomb scare at the 1996 Summer Games in Atlanta. However, the fact of the matter is, the 2010 games in Vancouver will be among the safest places on earth between February 12 and 28th.<br /> <br />Securing an event the sheer size of the Olympics is mind-boggling and overwhelming. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) is the lead agency in these efforts, but they are far from the only one involved. The Canadian Military, along with other public and private sector agencies and companies from Canada and around the globe, will work together to ensure the event is a very hard target for those wishing to disrupt the Games. <br /> <br />A concentric ring of increasingly robust security measures, both physical and procedural, will be utilized to secure protected spaces for residents, visitors, athletes, officials, the media, corporate sponsors and a slew of contractors providing a wide variety of services. The athletic facilities and other infrastructure, once completed, will be secured around the clock. From there, the concentric rings of protection, using a combination of technology and manpower, are designed to continually keep or push unauthorized individuals to the outer rings. Carefully crafted and protected credentials, embedded with bio-metric technology, are issued to those cleared to enter and work within certain concentric zones of protection.  <br /> <br />Highly intelligent closed circuit television (CCTV) surveillance equipped with analytics will keep a careful eye on protected spaces.  New technology can detect any suspicious items left behind and signal the command center, which will dispatch trained personnel to the location to investigate and take necessary action.<br /> <br />Throughout Olympic history, companies from around the globe have donated the newest and most advanced surveillance and electronic access control technology to help secure the Games.  Vancouver will be no exception, as security hardware and software firms use these high-profile events as a means to showcase their products on a global stage and leverage the Olympic Games as a marketing vehicle.<br /> <br />Every athlete, judge, spectator, contractor, official, maintenance person and coach will access housing and game venues through a wide variety of equipment that will detect, “sniff,” examine and probe for potentially hazardous materials.  Security representatives, trained to look for suspicious behavior by using a variety of techniques, will screen crowds and venues. The air space above the Olympic facilities will also be closed and monitored. Even though this will cause air traffic issues, this has long-been the standard for the Olympics, as well as many other large scale national and international sporting events.<br /> <br />Leading up to February 12th, the streets of Vancouver will receive progressively additional and high intensity law enforcement attention. Potential trouble-makers, gangs, extremist groups and others with known ill-intent will be monitored and receive the heightened attention of law enforcement and intelligence officials.<br /> <br />These are just a few measures from a very long list that will take place in a precisely defined security plan. The protocols, methods and the technologies involved could fill volumes. Even with the great extent of areas that need to be covered, these Games, as with every Olympics preceding them, will be deploying the latest and most advanced methods of protection available, making them the most secured Games to date. <br /> <br />William “Bill” Besse serves as Vice President of Andrews International’s consulting and investigations division. In this position Besse's functions entail strategic planning relating to consulting and investigations, as well as focus on development of other service areas where the C&I division can add value in support of client needs. Besse brings to his position three decades of experience in corporate security, consulting and public law enforcement: developing, managing and implementing international security and risk mitigation programs. <br /> <br />

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