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East Midlands CSSC

We hear about one of the regional parts of the growing CSSC information-spreading network. More in the September 2018 print issue of Professional Security magazine.

We met Andrew Nicholls, the recently retired security manager and former Security Institute board member, who’s a member of the management board of the East Midlands CSSC; and one of the region’s ISLs (Industry Sector Leads), Ruth Nixon, pictured, Managing Director of radio communications hire and rental firm Zycomm, based in Ripley in Derbyshire. As an SME (small and medium enterprise) herself, and working with customers, security and non-security alike, who use two-way radios, such as building sites, hotels and Mountain Rescue, she’s well aware that if something happens – whether something as extreme as an act of terrorism, or more mundane such as vandalism or theft, or a cyber incident that denies you access to your database – it can have an impact on a business, and indeed its customers. And besides, the need to act on whatever’s happened, is urgent. Or better still if you can be informed to protect against what has hit someone else, so that you at least are not a victim.

It sounds obvious – using email to send proper alerts from the authorities to businesses, or whoever wants to sign up in advance to know about scams, transport jams, acts of terrorism or anything that may affect the resilience of businesses. Hence the CSSC – the somewhat ungainly-titled Cross-sector Safety and Security Communications. It dates from 2011, set up to help London get through the 2012 Olympics. Though a good idea, it’s taken this long for it to be rolled out to the rest of the country, although Scotland had it for the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. As the police and private security people who made the London Games work went to their next posts, it’s taken a new generation, and further acts ot terror, to prompt the picking up of CSSC. Police behind the ‘step change’ project admit that they cannot handle terrorism any more than they can act on cyber-crime by themselves. Hence the need to arm business with what they need; whether to plan in advance for a Saturday street demo, or to get official views after a terror attack about the method, in case any vulnerability needs closing. Yes, businesses and their security contractors or departments can gather such info – you can commonly see in a control room a monitor on a video wall tuned in to BBC or Sky 24-hour news. If anything, there’s too much stuff around; there’s the problem, knowing what to trust. hence the CSSC.

To take the example of terrorism; in case of an attack, or new information about a method of hostile reconnaissance, the details will come from the national police counter-terrorism team, for those receiving it to apply to their own businesses and places of work, and suppliers and customers; whoever the receiver chooses to cascade the stuff to.

Gone is the need for a business to suffer in silence, or to wonder where to turn for sources of information to trust. CSSC around the regions are coming on stream; West Midlands‘ for example.

About CSSC in brief

The CSSC regions send three sorts of emails:
– crime trends, for readers to be aware of;
– details if something bad happens, such natural or man-made;
– a warning of a known event to prepare for, such as a city centre demo.

Visit for details of each region; and to sign up for free alerts.


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