Easing of lockdown heralds return of passengers and increased terrorism risk, Pool Re warns

Pool Re has warned that the lifting of lockdown restrictions and increased passenger numbers heralds the return of crowds and, with it, the potential for terrorist attacks. The transport sector remains an attractive target due to the high concentration of potential victims and the low complexity of planning required to cause mass terror.

Security on public transport infrastructure is the focus of Pool Re’s inaugural Sector Risk Report, which warns of the short-term impact on local economies and public confidence at a time when the economy is beginning to recover post-pandemic.

Counter-terrorism police have made a number of warnings of the increasing threat of self-radicalisation during lockdown and the return to crowded spaces may present a target which has not been present for over a year.

Pool Re has urged policymakers to consider public awareness campaigns, as well as to review and update contingency plans to mitigate the evolving risk from terrorist attacks on public transport infrastructure.

Ed Butler, chief resilience officer, said: “Whilst the threat from an attack remains substantial, we know that better understanding leads to better preparation. We believe this report will be of significant value to those who manage or operate in the public transport sector including risk managers, security personnel and those organisations and advisors to them.

“Our Solutions division is dedicated to helping organisations and businesses reduce vulnerability, risk and susceptibility. Our priority is to increase resistance and resilience to terrorism. We provide organisations the means to support them to identify vulnerabilities and implement mitigation strategies, before, during, and after a crisis, using a bespoke blend of intelligence, tools and techniques.

“These reports provide a detailed picture of the threat and vulnerabilities to a range of sectors, some part of our critical infrastructure such public transport, retail and hospitality, energy, and public services. They examine why and how attacks might be conducted, the potential impact of such attacks, common vulnerabilities and an evaluation of effective risk mitigation measures.”

The Home Office’s Protect Duty Consultation may lead to greater responsibilities being placed on owners and operators as well as those businesses that operate around transport hubs. They may be required to do more to understand and mitigate the threat of terrorism to their operations and businesses, which could raise challenges given that current resilience against terrorism within the sector varies greatly. The consultation ends on 2nd July 2021.


Image courtesy TfL

    Share Story:

Recent Stories


Financial institutions were early adopters of cyber security and insurance. Are they still on top of the game?
Managing huge amounts of sensitive data online makes financial institutions a prime target for hackers. As such, the sector was an early cohort for insurers in creating cyber cover. Since then, the market has evolved almost beyond recognition. It continues to challenge itself to this day, complying with rigorous regulatory demands and implementing avant-garde enhancements to keep abreast of the ever-changing risks. Published June 2021

Manufacturing: An industry at risk amid great technological change
Of the many sectors of business, manufacturing companies are among the most at risk from cyber threats. How has the sector evolved to make it so vulnerable and what does the task of managing cyber exposure in a manufacturing company look like? CIR’s latest podcast with Tokio Marine HCC sought to answer all these questions and more. Published April 2021

Advertisement