Meeting Security in Hostile Environments

Meeting Security in Hostile Environments

Meetings can be extremely dangerous and should always be treated with caution. This is when people will know where you will be at a specific time, exactly what the bad guys want to know. Arranging meetings is an easy way to set someone up for kidnapping, assassination, sexual assault or robbery.

Whenever you are meeting people for the first time you should always use
prearranged signs and countersigns to confirm their identity. The simplest thing is a pre-arranged question and answer, this works better than checking ID cards as the person you’re meeting with might be the right person, but you know them by a pseudonym. In a basic context, you want to make sure the limo driver who is meeting you at the airport is your real driver and will take you to your hotel not into months of captivity or to a garbage dump.

Considerations for Attending Meetings

  • Do you know in detail the meeting location? If not, then check it or get someone trusted to check it.
  • Things to take into consideration include the facilities (bathrooms, cafés, taxis, payphones, etc.), potential surveillance positions, location of surveillance cameras, escape routes.
  • Will it be daylight or dark?
  • What is the condition of pedestrian and vehicle traffic, what are people wearing, age and type of people in the area?
  • Make plans and procedures for all possible emergencies identified in your threat assessment.
  • How will you get to the meeting location: walking, using public transport or driving?
  • What will you wear for the meeting and will you need a change of clothes; remember it’s always easier to dress down than up. You can always take off a sports coat and shirt and put them in a plastic bag.
  • Will you be carrying any weapons and is there any risk of being searched?
  • When you reach the meeting location, sweep the area for anything suspicious, you might not be under surveillance but the person you’re meeting with could be.
  • Also, do not leave your food or drink unattended or let anyone fetch you a drink from the bar, etc. as this is an opportunity to drug it.
  • Keep the meeting as short as possible and when it’s is over, leave the area as quickly as possible and conduct several counter-surveillance drills, consider changing your appearance if necessary.
  • If further meetings are required, they would have to be varied for different times of day and days of the week.

Risks Incorporated covers meeting security in detail on their Close Protection, Hostile Environment & Kidnap & Ransom Prevention courses, check the below links for details!

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