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In January 2013, terrorists launch an attack in Algeria on the Tigantourine gas facility. April sees the detonation of two bombs near the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon. The savage killing of Drummer Lee Rigby takes place in Woolwich in May. In September, terrorists enter the Westgate Shopping Mall in Nairobi and cause multiple deaths and injuries in a sustained gun and grenade attack. The last days of 2013 witnessed two suicide bombings targeting crowded places in the Russian city of Volgograd.

As these events unfolded, one thing became clear. The terrorist and security threat is international, interconnected and constantly evolving. As noted by the defence intelligence supplier IHS Janes, there was a marked increase in ‘damaging attacks’ worldwide over the six months to September 2013 vs the same period in 2012.

Counter Terror Expo, 29-30 April 2014 at Olympia, London, the largest international counter terrorism and security event of its kind, has achieved its pre-eminent position as a direct result of the commitment of its organisers, Clarion Events, to ensuring its immediate relevance to these evolving threats.

It’s a commitment that is fully reflected in the impressive roster of distinguished speakers that has been assembled for the Counter Terror Expo 2014 Conference programme; speakers representing the Home Office, emergency services, government departments, NATO, NGOs and the private sector. In total, they will be delivering no less than 100 highly relevant conference sessions organised around six themes.

GLOBAL COUNTER TERRORISM

29 & 30 April

Multilateral counterterrorism is an ever evolving field influenced in no small part by the changes of the Arab Spring revolutions and the profound regional consequences arising from the ongoing conflict in Syria. The global security situation continues to unfold, forcing nations to constantly reconsider and adjust their counter terrorism strategies. The sessions in this theme will provide a focused review of the threats posed by radicalisation, home grown terror and violent extremism as well as debating the diversified nature of leading international terrorist groups and the key influences on the future of terrorism.

RISK, RESILIENCE & SECURITY - PROTECTING NATIONAL INFRASTRUCTURE

29 & 30 April

There are a wide range of risks to our critical national infrastructure and these conference sessions will bring together owners and operators, policy makers and practitioners as well as key supply chain representatives to debate the issues at stake and provide a sustained focus on the importance of strengthening threat awareness, emergency preparedness and response capabilities. The conference will also deliver insights into human factors and their influence on security and resilience, discuss CBRN threats and advances in bio-weapons, and consider the implications of cyber exploitation of the national infrastructure.

SECURING PUBLIC SPACES

29 April

Crowded public spaces – from sporting and entertainment venues to shopping malls to transport hubs – remain a key security focus as they are both highly vulnerable and extremely difficult to secure. This one day conference programme will look at the role of new design to counter terrorist threats and consider the application of innovative methods to overcome inadequacies in existing structures. In addition, the conference will examine blast mitigation techniques and best practice policing procedures.

EMERGENCY SERVICES

29 April

Blue light services are typically the first responders to terrorism incidents and there is an imperative need to ensure the highest levels of coordination and interoperability between all of the organisations and individuals involved. This conference stream will consider the practicalities of multi-agency response, the role and features of the effective commander and how to provide mutual aid and interoperability across services. There will also be sessions providing an in-depth review of the current levels of preparedness for major emergencies, including challenges for rural communities, urban fire prevention, the use of CBRN and other hazardous materials, and resilience in the face of marauding firearms attack.

CYBER SECURITY & ELECTRONIC TERRORISM

30 April

The cyber threat is an increasingly malevolent and thorny issue for governments and businesses worldwide. While increasing global interconnectivity delivers enormous benefits to society, the cyber world provides vast opportunities for state-sponsored actors, terrorists, extreme activists and criminal gangs to do considerable harm to national infrastructures and global commerce. This one day conference will consider how the world is changing and the real nature of the cyber terrorism threat; as well as considering the government’s cyber security strategy, what the police service and other agencies are doing to combat e-crime, and new ways to make both nations and businesses more resilient to cyber-attack. In addition, there will be sessions on how to build a defence strategy that works, how big data is a useful weapon in the defence of the cyber threat, and the implications for information security of increased social media and mobile device usage.

PRACTICAL COUNTER TERRORISM

30 April

This one day conference session will discuss the detail of practical counter terrorism, from the threats posed by solo actors to the use of surveillance in counter terror activities. Covering both hostile and non-hostile environments, the conference will cover the key skills required in counterinsurgency operations, discuss private vs public sector protective security, and consider how to protect soft targets from hard-line terror.

Specific issues addressed will include the benefits of deploying IED search personnel for VIP visits and significant events and new solutions for counter terrorism surveillance as well as the use of positive engagement with host communities to mitigate hostile security threats and the increasing adoption of 'soft security' measures.

Philip Hunter, Event Director, Clarion Defence & Security said: “We’re confident that we have put together a conference programme for Counter Terror Expo 2014 that is of immediate and practical relevance to every professional involved in the counter terrorism and security arena. This promises to be a must attend event and we’re extremely grateful to all of the experts who have agreed to share their insights into the ever evolving threats we face.”