The Current Threat Environment and the Need for a Layered Security Strategy – Keynote Presentation
Evolv Technology was a proud sponsor of the Counter Terror Business 365 Virtual event on October 8, 2020. During the virtual event, Nathan Bailey, Evolv Technology Sales Director of EMEA, gave a keynote presentation where he discussed the current threat environment, the need for touchless security screening in this new normal and how Evolv can help keep venues and facilities safe from terrorists and pandemic health threats worldwide.
Here is that keynote presentation.
Watch other CTB365 event presentations, including the final Panel Discussion & Round-up featuring: Philip Ingram, Figen Murray, Rick Mounfield, Paul Jeffrey, Gary Simpson, Nick Aldworth and our own Co-founder, Anil Chitkara – Click here.
ABOUT NATHAN BAILEY:
Sales Director, EMEA – Evolv Technology
For twenty plus years, Nathan Bailey has been a recognised leader in the security sector. From a young inspired engineer working on vehicle explosives detection systems to running a company providing the best technology to combat contraband and weapons from entering prisons and courts, Nathan has never wavered from the mission of keeping people safe.
At Evolv, he has responsibility for market development and customer success across Europe. Nathan has worked with some of the world’s most recognized sports clubs and event operators, bringing the full breadth of his screening systems expertise to organisations committed to physical and health safety.
ABOUT EVOLV TECHNOLOGY
Evolv Technology provides touchless security screening systems that ensure safety without sacrificing the visitor experience. The company’s latest product, coupled with a thermal imaging package, spots concealed weapons and potential virus infection threats using advanced digital sensors and artificial intelligence that is incredibly accurate, discreet and delivers significantly more throughput than older technologies. Evolv Express™ has earned industry accolades such as the 2020 Edison Awards™, two Campus Safety 2020 BEST Awards, and Campus Security & Life Safety magazine’s Secure Campus 2020 Awards.
Evolv’s customers include hundreds of corporations, airports, schools, cultural landmarks, hospitals, outdoor entertainment venues, stadiums and large-scale events around the globe. Led by a team of security industry thought leaders with a track record for delivering first-to-market products, the company holds more than 100 patents. For more information, visit https://evolvtechnology.com.
Hi my name is Nathan Bailey – Sales Director for Evolv technology and it’s my pleasure to be able to speak to you today and talk to you about the current threat environment, the need for a layered security strategy and a little about our products and services that have been widely used across the world today.
Before I begin, I’ll give you a little background about Evolv Technology…
Evolv was founded on the belief that everyone deserves to live, work, learn and play in a safe environment; free from terrorist activity, free from attack and free to live life to the fullest without fear.
Evolv technology was founded in 2013 and since then has grown to become the leader in touchless security screening technology across the US and following this success is developing and growing throughout the world today.
We’ve seen over the last few years just how much the world is changing, with extremism moving from well-organized terror cells such as al Qaeda to your local activist who are radicalized through online propaganda
We’ve seen attacks such as the Paris shootings, London Bridge attacks and Parsons green tube station to name just a few, we can see that these attacks come in many forms and from many mediums and now to top it all off we have a biothreat, to which the industry has been crippled.
As we have heard from Figen and Nick today we need to learn from these tragic events in the past to make things better for the future. With the new legislation coming out, every venue must do what is right to secure the public, the venue and their staff, from becoming a victim to such attacks.
We must seek at all levels to provide the best we can at every moment because one life lost is one too many.
Now there is no silver bullet to any of the challenges we face but we believe that one right step at a time and with the right approach we can improve and reduce the number of attacks the adversary inflicts.
The combination of an unprecedented number of weapons and unprecedented levels of anxiety and depression creates an unprecedented danger. We are living in an era of armed anxiety. Even though people are not gathering at scale today, that will change someday soon. Any gathering or workplace could be the next target. Any employee or visitor could suddenly erupt into the next violent threat. Any fan could reach their breaking point during an argument in your stands.
It could happen anywhere at any time.
So, when we look to the future and consider reopening the doors once again to the public, to our fans and visitors, we must consider that the attitude will be different, some people will be anxious about returning to larger gatherings not just because of the Biological threat but also the very real terror threat, and so as a company we aim to provide a solution that enables venues to reopen its doors with confidence, to provide a platform which is inviting to the visitors, fans and public. A system which reduces human to human contact and at the same time prevents weapons of mass destruction from entering.
Reopening your venues will bring many challenges just, as we have heard from the guest speakers so far today and having worked with many sports stadiums, Event Arenas, theme parks, exhibition centers and conference halls , museums, hospitals and performing arts venues across the world prior to and during the COVID-19 Pandemic we understand just how difficult it is to plan for the new future. It’s important to remember, while you look to create a safer environment from biological threats, you cannot let your guard down on public safety related to weapons threats. You have a duty to protect all who enter from both public safety and public health.
We have heard from Rick Mountfield on the role of the security officer and I wanted to say that in almost all client engagement I have had over the past 6 months or so, staffing is one of the biggest concerns, with the ever increasing terror threat and now with the COVID-19 Bio threat, we have seen a large decline in the number of security personnel available and I’m sure that this has crossed your mind when looking at your reopening plans?
Because our Evolv Express system is capable of such a high flow rate for screening it replaces in excess of 10 to 15 metal detectors depending on your operational layout and as such reduces the number of security guards required to operate. This in turn allows our clients to reduce their security teams considerably, save a huge portion of costs and then reinvest in retraining and repurposing the additional head count to perform other duties such as crowd management and behavioral detection, or you can look at getting canine teams in or use the money for additional screening systems… or simple save money and reduce your overheads.
Express enables fast, respectful, touchless screening for your security teams, fans, and patrons; No longer are people required to divest their personal belongings before passing through security, No longer does the security officer have to carry out additional metal wanding or pat downs to every person who walks through which infringes on personal space and puts both the officer and visitor at a greater risks of human to human contact. With a screening capacity of more than 3600 people per hour, the Evolv Express provides free-flow screening at the pace of life, and with its proprietary artificial intelligence platform, Express is able to differentiate between every day personal items like cell phones, keys and coins and Mass casualty Weapons.
I could talk all day about our system and its performance but I won’t, I hope you have a great time in session 2 and as I say goodbye I’ll leave you with this video which shows everything I’ve spoken about. If you want to learn more or talk to us, then please connect with me or one of the team after the show…
<Express video plays>
Touchless Security Solutions to Make Venues Safe and the Process Easy
Anil Chitkara discusses touchless security solutions for today’s entertainment venues.
Anil Chitkara, Co-Founder and Head of Corporate Development for Evolv Technology, started his company with one goal: to keep people safe from harm at events or other venues and locations where threats could exist.
For most of Evolv’s existence, those threats were violent, either from potential terrorist attacks or an active shooter situation. But COVID-19 shined a light on a different risk to the health of the public at large. When considering entertainment spaces, security checkpoints now have a new consideration: how to make the venue safe from a deadly disease.
Chitkara discussed these scenarios and how Evolv’s touchless security solutions can help.
“We’ve all been through airports. We know what airport screening is like,” Chitkara said. “We looked at all these other places where people are and [asked], ‘How can we help the security professionals in those areas maintain a safe venue or environment?’”
Theaters, performing arts centers, concert arenas, sports venues, theme parks and amphitheaters are all focuses of Evolv’s technology solutions. The company’s goal is to take a slow and manual security process and make it faster and more comfortable for the guest to enter the venue.
The security process for many entertainment venues today is not a friendly experience, and Chitkara wants to change that.
“Not only is it not what the customer entering into the venue wants, but it also is not what the band and the concert venue want,” Chitkara said. “They want their customer to be excited from the day they purchase their ticket up to the moment they walk up to the arena. The biggest pain point of the guest experience is that security screening. There hasn’t been a great solution up to now.”
Rethinking the whole approach to security through technology and doing it in a fan-friendly way is Chitkara’s mission. Evolv’s touchless security approach makes entry easier for the patron.
And, during this time of healthcare concerns, the less security needs to come into physical contact with someone entering the venue, the lower the risk of spreading viruses.
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It’s All About Balance: Improved Security and Better Customer Experience
Mike Ellenbogen, CEO, Evolv Technology –
Evolv has had the pleasure of working with Mark Briggs for the past several months. As chief operating officer of TeamOps, which has provided security at Gillette Stadium since 2006, Mark has an incredible wealth of security industry knowledge. After a 16-year stint with the British Army, Mark has played important roles in protecting iconic events such as the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, as well as hundreds of concerts, corporate events, and games at London’s Wembley complex and at Gillette.
Mark realizes, as do Evolv co-founder Anil Chitkara and I, that sports and entertainment venues need to create a balance of heightened security and improved customer experience in order to address evolving security demands. “People don’t have to go to a sporting or entertainment venue,” says Mark. “They can watch on TV or download music onto smart phones. So we need to protect our guests, while also making venues a fun place to be.”
I’m proud to report that, thanks to this successful partnership with TeamOps, visitors to the suite entrances at Gillette, which are also used daily by employees who work at the stadium, no longer need to empty their pockets or be hand-wanded by security officers as they enter. Instead, they pass through our Evolv Edge screening systems at their normal walking speed. So far, Mark knows of no complaints of false alarms. “I’ve heard no reports of people going through secondary screening because of a car key,” he says. “In fact, I haven’t heard any customer complaints at all. When we’ve asked guests about the new screening protocols, they’ve said it was a very positive experience.”
Thanks to the Evolv Edge’s multi-sensor architecture, Gillette now has a detection capability that can identify both metallic and fully non-metallic threats, as well as adapt to an ever-changing stream of future threats. The Edge was designed to screen more than 600 people an hour, and its sleek aesthetics provide a welcoming gateway to those who just walk through. “We liked that Evolv’s approach doesn’t treat visitors like criminals,” says Mark.
With Pinpoint, the Edge’s integrated face recognition capability, security personnel can greet trusted guests and valued customers by name, and speed them through the screening process. Likewise, known gate-crashers or people who have been banned from the stadium can be detected within seconds.
Sports and entertainment venues, particularly those serving tens of thousands of people, must have concentric layers of security that start far beyond the ticket gates. Evolv’s vision, which we share with TeamOps, is to use advanced connected sensors along with face and image recognition to identify potential threats as soon as they arrive on property or come in sight of the venue. Our credo is “prevent, don’t just react.”
Finally, we’ve designed the Evolv Edge for flexibility, making it far more software-centric than other security technologies. This flexibility will enable the Edge to accommodate new sensor technologies and future algorithms that can identify new weapons or explosive materials. As Mark puts it, “you only have to change the software—not the technology.”
We at Evolv want to thank Mark and his team for working with us to prove that outstanding security and an outstanding visitor experience are no longer mutually exclusive.
For more information, or to request the full version of the paper that inspired this blog post, click here.
Why the Rio Olympic Security team faces the most complex threat set ever
The narrative leading up to the Rio Olympics to date has been troubling. From Zika to corruption, safety and security have now emerged as one of most concerning areas. The same games that are meant to celebrate the world, united by Olympism are happening at a time when mass casualty attacks like those in Brussels, Orlando, and Nice are becoming the new normal. We refuse to accept that and wanted to share some thoughts on the unique challenges we see for the dedicated security team committed to protecting the athletes, volunteers and fans who will spend the next fourteen days in Brazil.
How difficult is it to keep 600,000 people safe over 19 days?
These 2016 Summer Olympics will be secured by 85,000 personnel protecting 10,500 athletes, 70,000 volunteers and about 500,000 fans watching 306 events over 19 days across 32 different venues in four different geographic areas with football matches in five additional cities. These people will enter an array of venues from large stadiums to small arenas, outdoor ranges, beaches and the open water. This is where the challenge begins.
So how can you efficiently and effectively screen this volume of people coming in and out of the games?
Let’s use the largest single location to illustrate the security challenge.
The Barra Olympic Park (picture above) spans almost 300 acres, and is home to nine stadium venues hosting thirteen different sports, with an aggregate capacity of 95,000 fans.
On the fifth day of competition at Barra, 329,000 fans will attend 21 different events starting at 8:30am and ending after midnight. This is the equivalent of having sold out games at Fenway Park (Red Sox), TD Garden (Bruins/Celtics), Gillette Stadium (Patriots), Citi Field (Mets), Yankee Stadium, Madison Square Garden (Rangers/Knicks) and Met Life Stadium (Jets/Giants) on one consolidated campus, all in the same day.
Fans, athletes, volunteers and employees will be coming and going all day long. They will be arriving on buses, via subway, private vehicles, by bicycle and on foot. The Barra Olympic Park peninsula borders water on two sides and a very busy traffic area on the third. This is one tough perimeter to secure. Checkpoints will be set up around the perimeter to screen people and their bags. Given the volume of people throughout the day and the breadth of belongings they will have with them, this poses an enormous security challenge for any guard force. Add visitors speaking many different languages who may be new to Olympic-style security screening and the lines are likely to be very slow. One more variable: people will be bringing all sorts of personal items that local guards have not experienced before in their training. Imagine their thinking is this a threat or not? Is this on the prohibited list?
Let’s consider the security challenge faced by the Rio Olympics security organization. First and foremost, these games are once in a lifetime for Brazil (and is the case for many Olympic hosts). Therefore, there is no ‘permanent’ security force that secures all of those venues with those crowds on a regular basis. Second, looking for ‘abnormal behavior’ in a sea of chaos is virtually impossible. Thousands of people from hundreds of countries, moving around day and night over nearly three weeks creates a constantly changing environment. There is nothing normal about it that can provide a baseline for security personnel to assess unusual behavior against. Techniques to gather intelligence, identify suspicious behavior, and employ counter surveillance strategies are exponentially more complex.
In addition to its athletes, each nation brings trainers, coaches and other support staff. Is it time to think about each nation contributing large numbers of security personnel to the games? Should we have a transnational security organization that moves from one international sporting event to the next? Or can we use technology to reduce the complexity and be a force multiplier?
Given today’s threat landscape and the complexity of the modern Olympics, do we need to fundamentally rethink how we secure the games?