Incident Management – adding value not volume
At the beginning of 2021 the City Security Council (CSC) outlined as a priority its intention to enhance its ability to share information between the City of London Police (CoLP) and our members.
I am proud to say we have worked hard to achieve this, through the creation of a purpose-built joint communications platform called CityINTEL.
Our new cloud-based platform is currently being phased in and tested with the CoLP Joint Command and Control Room and with the CSC members. When it goes live (anticipated date is March this year) it will allow real-time, two-way communication to flow smoothly between the private security companies based in the City and the CoLP.
Communication is critical in incident management and as Commander David Evans said at a recent CSC webinar, the new CityINTEL platform “effectively multiplies the eyes, ears and security posture in the City of London and will help us make better decisions collectively with better information”. In addition to our members, the City of London Corporation is also a signed-in partner to the platform and the opportunity for other City-based organisations to join is on the horizon.
The commitment by all CSC members has been impressive, with details already loaded to the CityINTEL platform for over 150 buildings that we are collectively responsible for securing in the City, and more being added every week. While the uploading of information continues, having it all securely stored in one place gives the CoLP the ability to send information to individual buildings, by geofenced areas, or to broadcast more generally, in a targeted and timely fashion. It will add value and assist in better decision making, which can only be derived from better information gathering and sharing.
What the platform will not do is add a layer of volume. It will not send a huge number of daily updates; rather, it will be specific information such as advising on protests or counter terrorism threats, the need to evacuate an area quickly and so on. It will also not detract the security officers away from their day-to-day duties; it is an added-value layer and a quick mechanism to respond to incidents as well as alert CoLP to any issues taking place within the City of London.
As former City of London Police Commissioner Ian Dyson said, “Communication in its widest manifestation is the single thing that can turn victory into defeat in terms of how policing and law enforcement partners manage any incident.” As we all work towards that one overriding priority of keeping the City safe, situational awareness and sharing of information is absolutely vital and I am convinced using technology alongside our security officers on the ground will ensure the safety of individuals living, visiting, or working in the City.
Chair of the CSC