9) How to End Terrorism

I’m so tired of terrorism. I remember early on, hearing George Bush say, “We won’t quit until we defeat terrorism.” I would hear him say that and I wanted to believe him, but I remember thinking, “How does that work? Because — these guys are basically stateless. If you destroy one cell, won’t there just be 5 more rise up to take its place?” Here we are, more than 10 years later, asking the same questions. Does anyone out there know how we can truly stop terrorism? I mean end it for all time?

11) Calling All Security Advisors: Where Do You Get Your Updates?

Suppose you advise your church or agency on global terrorism, security, emergency response procedures and more. What websites do you frequent? Where do you get the lowdown on events like… demonstrations in Bulgaria, or the impact in France on French intervention in Mali? We’re not looking for the ones that are so secret that, if you told us, you’d have to kill us. :-) We’re just hoping you’ll share the ones that are already public on the web anyway. :-) Please make a comment on the web version of this post, using the link below.

14) TheBackPage: Assessing Your Threat Level Awareness Color

Last week, I traveled through Haiti with a new friend who happens to be a law enforcement officer. It had been a while since I traveled with anyone quite so aware and in touch. When I commented to him about it, he explained a “threat level awareness color” system that they had taught him at his police academy. You can see a very similar presentation at…

As you can see, the principle behind the color metaphor is that we don’t want to walk around at condition “black” unnecessarily. We’d eventually burn out. But the implication is that we probably SHOULD consider perking up to condition “yellow” a lot more often than we do.

As I watched my friend at work, I realized that I had probably been very lucky in my life (maybe guarded by angels? … and, certainly, the recipient of a lot of prayer). I determined to learn from his example and open my eyes and scan my horizon a lot more often than I ever had before.

As you’ve traveled cross-culturally, have you experienced “condition orange” circumstances? If so, without revealing any sensitive information (feel free to speak anonymously), can you tell us how you reacted, what came down, and what you learned? Just use the comment box following the web version of this item at Thanks for sharing


7) Four Common Attack Vectors For Stealing Email Accounts

Greg, our I.T. guy, shared these with me yesterday, after two more of our staff people were each hacked in their email accounts. I was trying to imagine — how do people most easily make off the keys to someone’s email accounts? Greg filled me on the most common 4 Attack Vectors:

1.  Weak password storage on the server that got hacked.

2.  Re-usage of the same username/password across accounts, typically linked grabbed from one of those servers that got hacked.

3.  Spyware/viruses stealing info

4.  Weak implementation of the “Security Question” model.

I thought each of these represented a different, yet related sphere.

3) Survive Active Shooter Incidences —

The City of Houston, in cooperation with the Department of Homeland Security, has developed a short training video regarding “active shooter” events. Although this video was designed for domestic audiences, the principles apply anywhere, and even more so in countries and settings where law enforcement help may not be available.
See the video at…

5) Six-Session DVD Series to Prep for Int’l Travel Security —

Are you traveling to a dangerous location? Or … maybe you’re just traveling to a location that can BECOME dangerous by a person that is emotionally haywire. Here’s a group that offers a six-session DVD course featuring David Dose, a well-known trainer on questions of security and travel risk. Check out mini-video-introductions the 6 sessions at the bottom of the home page.

6) Department of State Updates Worldwide Caution

The Department of State recently updated its warning against the continued terrorist threat against USA citizens and others. They reminded travelers and citizens to be vigilant throughout the world. They highlighted al-Qaida and its affiliates. They mentioned suicide operations, assassinations, kidnappings, hijackings, and bombings. Although the warning is somewhat generic, it’s a chilling reminder that bad guys can use conventional or non-conventional weapons, and target both official and private interests. It appears that practically no environment is exempt. The warning asks us to be very aware at “high-profile sporting events, residential areas, business offices, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, schools, public areas, and other tourist destinations both in the United States and abroad where U.S. citizens gather in large numbers, including during holidays.” The translation is — just about everywhere, at any time, you could become a target. Yikes.  There were regional warnings too. See the entire warning at…


7) USA Citizens can Enroll in “STEP” —

The USA’s “Smart Traveler Enrollment Program” is a free service provided by the U.S. Government to U.S. citizens who are traveling to, or living in, a foreign country. STEP allows you to enter information about your upcoming trip abroad so that the Department of State can better assist you in an emergency. STEP also allows Americans residing abroad to get routine information from the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate. Sign up at…


The US gov’t promises they “will not disclose the information you provide us in your STEP application to any third parties unless you have given us written authorization to do so, or unless the disclosure is otherwise permitted by the Privacy Act.” By signing up, you can get special updates from embassies and other USA sources about the places you’re visiting or the countries in which you’re residing. Worth it.

2) With All the Instability this Spring, Need Video Security? —

Now you can order it — affordably. Just visit…


Check out the Dropcam basic (no audio) for $199 and the Dropcam Echo, with audio, for $279. Both are relatively easy to install. You won’t need an I.T. degree or even a book. All you’ll need is access to your wifi router. (If you don’t have one, then yes — you might need some help setting one up.) Highly recommended.

4) Plan Now for Child Safety Network in Asia, November 2010 —

In November, the Child Safety & Protection Network (CS&PN) Seminar will be held in Asia with family friends.. For more information on CS&PN please click

You can register for the Network Seminar either as a stand-alone one day preconference for missions organizations representatives or as one of your days of attendance at ICEC.

To register for the CS&PN preconference and/or the entire ICEC conference

For more information regarding the 1 day preconference and/or the entire ICEC conference click

6) Upcoming Workshops on Security from Crisis Consulting Int’l

Check out these upcoming workshops, led by CCI:

Field Security Seminar – April 14-16, 2010 – A three-day program that instructs on target hardening, profile management, disrupting the terrorism and attack cycles, managing violent encounters, convoys, checkpoints/ambushes and dealing with landmines, UXO and IEDs.

Crisis Management Seminar – April 19-21, 2010 – A three-day program that instructs on risk assessment, current threats and trends, policies, contingency planning and crisis management; includes the EZRA risk assessment instruments.

These seminars will be held at the JAARS campus in Waxhaw, North Carolina.  To register or get more information, please visit their website at

3) Transparency in Mission: Promoting Health/Safeguarding

kellyodonnell2.gifWe heard this past week from Kelly and Michèle O’Donnell, authors of several industry-defining books on member care. They had updated their site at…

dealing with the tough questions of, “How transparent should we be in our work and lives?” on the international weblog “Reflections and Resources for Good Practice.” The entries include definitions and applications of transparency in mission, personal stories from Dr. Kelly O’Donnell, and photos. They also highlight several core resources/links including quotes from Bennis et al’s amazing book Transformation: How Leaders Create a Culture of Candor, a link to the Summary Report from Transparency International on Preventing Corruption in Humanitarian Assistance, and a link to the ECFA’s suggested guidelines for dealing with misconduct and whistle blowing. They personally invited Brigada users in particular to peer into their souls, leave a comment, and join the interaction.

4) Guidelines for Security on Social Networking Sites

reachglobalThanks much to ReachGlobal, who shared with us their guidelines for social networking sites. The author, their Dir. of Special Initiatives, was kind enough to grant us permission to publish it here as a seed for further thoughts on how to relate to Facebook. Thanks for your work, your unselfishness, and your willingness to help all of us grapple with these issues, Lindsay!

8) Ten Facebook Preferences to Change for More FB Security

facebook.gifAre you a Facebooker? If so, you’ll probably want to scan…

The author suggests 10 preferences that are significant for personal security. (I’d tell you who gave us this item, but then we’d be compromising his security. :-) ) Along with this, our informant suggested that we might want to advise folks *not* to use their primary email address as the Facebook point of contact. What’s your take? How secure are you? Please drop in a comment below, anonymous if you please, to let us know your own take on social networking sites like Facebook. Let’s build on our June 14th item and comments, found at:

Tell us what you think by leaving a comment there (at the June 14th item) or below.

8) How Would Your Church Or Mission Handle A Critical Incident?

An Illinois pastor was shot and killed, and two parishioners injured after an unknown gunman opened fire during Sunday services at the First Baptist Church in Maryville, Ill ON March 9th.

Read more at …,2933,506820,00.html

Our heart goes out to them over their loss. Is your church ready for such an incident? Where do we get training to prepare for this kind of stuff? How do we make sure it isn’t so easy to repeat it? If you have a favorite resource for offering training, security for such incidents, or awareness coaching (or if you yourself offer such training), please pass the word by clicking on “Comment…” below and sharing your lead.

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