Category Archives: Products

Protect yourself and your company against the new GOZeuS and CryptoLocker malware threat

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The National Crime Agency (NCA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) have both issued statements this week warning PC users with Windows operating systems of two new malware threats: GameOver ZeuS (GOZeuS) and CryptoLocker.

Find out more about this malware threat and how you can protect yourself and your business against it here.


 Article by Frances Nobes, follow her @FrancesNobes

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Top tips for staying safe at the World Cup

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Ahead of the Brazil World Cup, Nick Piper (red24’s Chief Analyst for the Americas) takes a look at red24’s top security tips for travellers going to the tournament.

 

  • Visit a travel clinic well in advance of your trip to obtain the necessary vaccinations.
  • Arrange to be met on arrival in each host city by a representative from your hotel or a trusted local contact whose identity can be verified.
  • Ideally arrange to arrive during daylight hours
  • Book at least your first night’s accommodation in each host city.
  • Avoid travelling at night, and limit the amount of time you spend walking around cities at night.
  • When possible, leave all important documents in a safe (or safe deposit box) at your accommodation.
  • Only carry certified copies of your passport.
  • Avoid carrying large amounts of cash (only carry enough cash for a day) or wearing expensive jewellery or valuables.
  • Due to the risk of drink-spiking, do not leave drinks unattended or accept drinks from strangers.
  • Only organise a taxi through trusted local sources, such as your accommodation.
  • Do not hail a taxi on the street or enter one that has been hailed by persons you have only recently met.
  • Do not enter a taxi that is carrying other passengers.
  • If it is safe to do so, strongly consider exiting a taxi if it stops to pick up additional passengers.
  • Do not use ATMs on the street, particularly after dark or in a deserted area.
  • If possible, only use ATMs that are located in busy shopping centres, stores, banks and hotel lobbies.
  • In the event that you are a victim of crime, do not resist the demands of the perpetrators.

 


 

Interested in knowing more? Take a look at red24’s briefing on the security risks facing travellers going to the World Cup.

Or sign up directly for red24’s Brazil World Cup package. This is designed to provide travellers with advice, security updates and emergency support – both before and during the tournament.

Article by Nick Piper, follow him @AmericasRisk.

 

Brazil: Staying safe at the 2014 World Cup

The 2014 football World Cup will be held in Brazil from 12 June to 13 July. The tournament will be contested between 32 national teams and will see a total of 64 matches played in 12 host cities.

Security risks

Persons travelling to the tournament should be aware of the security threats in Brazil. All the host cities tabled above are assessed to be high-risk destinations. The greatest concern facing travellers is crime. Incidents of petty crime are common throughout these urban centres. Criminals may take advantage of the anonymity of large crowds to conduct their activities at matches, other events linked to the tournament and popular tourist areas. Violent crime is an established security issue in World Cup host cities. Although most instances of violent crime affect locals in lower-income favela areas, red24 is aware of several incidents that have involved foreign nationals elsewhere in host cities in recent months.

A further concern pertains to short-term express kidnapping. This form of kidnapping involves victims being held for a short duration while they are forced to withdraw money or hand over PIN details so that money can be withdrawn from ATMs; in other cases, they are held while being relieved of other possessions. Significantly, express kidnappings are equally likely to take place in affluent areas as in lower-income areas. Although the use of bogus taxis or rogue taxi drivers is a primary modus operandi of express kidnappers, incidents are also perpetrated near outdoor ATMs. There is a lesser threat of traditional kidnapping for ransom. Most cases of this longer form of kidnapping involve locals; the number of foreign nationals in the country on short-term visits that have been kidnapped is assessed to have decreased significantly in recent years. Nevertheless, the risk does extend to non-Brazilians; appropriate security protocols should be established to minimise the risk.

Sporadic demonstrations over socio-economic and labour concerns have been affecting Brazil since June 2013. The largest of these protest campaigns corresponded with the Confederations Cup football tournament, which took place between 15 and 30 June 2013. It is anticipated that there will be an attempt on the part of protest movement organisers to use the added media attention of the World Cup to highlight their respective causes. These groups have already indicated their intention to disrupt the tournament if their demands are not met. Gatherings will likely be planned in areas that allow for maximum exposure; these include sites associated with the World Cup, including in the vicinity of stadiums. Demonstrations have the potential to turn violent, as they are often infiltrated by disruptive elements, such as members of the anarchist Black Bloc.

The risk of terrorism in Brazil is low. There are no notable terrorist groups currently active in the country, nor has red24 received any information or intelligence to suggest that terrorist attacks are being arranged or planned; however, the risk of an incursion during a major international tournament such as the World Cup cannot be discounted. Any potential targets are likely to be symbolic and associated with the tournament.

 

red24 service capabilities

red24 has experience assisting clients in managing their risk during international sporting tournaments, including the London 2012 Olympics and Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. Our services include the creation of crisis management plans, facilitating security escorts, check-in and alert services, and hostile environment awareness courses. Our products and services are provided by a range of experts and facilitated through our 24/7 Crisis Response Management Centre.

We recommend that you clarify what support services are available to you via your insurance or your travel provider prior to departure. If you feel that there are any significant gaps in the support that you hope to receive in the event of a serious travel-related incident, please contact us. We have the capabilities to provide versatile, cost-effective solutions for both individuals and groups travelling to the 2014 World Cup.

Should you be interested in making use of any of these services for travel to Brazil, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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Boko Haram: A domestic or regional threat?

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There are concerns that the Boko Haram, which has generally been regarded as a domestic terrorist group, is on the verge of adopting a transnational agenda. In doing so, Boko Haram would pose a significant threat in an African region already afflicted by a myriad of challenges; these include political instability, ethnic conflicts and Islamist extremism.

For the full free analysis, click here

Analysis by Ryan Cummings, follow him @Pol_Sec_Analyst

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Afghanistan: Elections and the ongoing security challenges

Operation Mountain Fire

On 5 April, presidential and provincial council elections will be held across Afghanistan.  Chief Asia Analyst, Jonathan Vincent, analyses the ongoing security challenges in the country and forecasts how these could impact the elections.

For the full free analysis, click here

Analysis by Jonathan Vincent, follow him @South_Asia_Risk

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Pele fears protests could ruin World Cup; but what do the analysts say?

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Security at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil

The 2014 FIFA World Cup will be held in Brazil from 12 June to 13 July.  In a recent interview, Pele (Edson Arantes do Nascimento), the retired Brazilian football legend, stated that as a Brazilian, the ongoing civil unrest in the country not only saddens him but could also sour the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Pele is one of the most lauded players in the history of football and is frequently ranked the best player ever. However, does his expertise carry over to the field of political and security risk analysis, and will the protests, as he believes, spoil the World Cup?

Brief background on protests

Sporadic protests over socio-economic and labour concerns have been affecting Brazil since June 2013. Although the largest of these corresponded with the FIFA Confederations Cup (FCC) period (15 to 30 June), related gatherings have been ongoing in recent months. The civil unrest was initially motivated by an increase in public transport fares in Rio de Janeiro; however, the campaign soon garnered significant support and momentum. It formed a convenient platform for various civil society groupings to voice their respective grievances, including issues regarding service delivery, concerns over the World Cup, corruption, etc. Despite significantly reduced support for the protest movement following the FCC period, periodic protests continue in the country and violence still remains a considerable concern at related events. Most recent socio-economic demonstrations have focused on Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo. It should be noted that police forces often resort to heavy-handed tactics to disperse protesters (as seen in the video below):

(WarningVideo contains scenes of violence some viewers may find disturbing )

Will there be protests?

Yes, protests by a variety of disparate groups are expected in host cities during the World Cup. These groups have already indicated their intention to disrupt the tournament if their demands are not met. Pele’s views are therefore based on credible concerns. However, it should be noted that disruptions caused by potential protests are anticipated to be largely minimised by government security operations in the 12 host cities. It is red24’s position that these events will not reach the magnitude of those witnessed during the FCC period. This is due, in roughly equal measures, to the large-scale increase in security aimed at limiting disruptions caused by potential protests (the government has invested over US$2.2 billion into World Cup security in 2013 alone) and the placating options that are available to President Dilma Rousseff so as to counter any burgeoning protest movement. Nevertheless, gatherings will still likely be planned in areas that allow for maximum exposure; these include sites associated with the tournament. Further details on planned protests and city-specific protest hotspots can be found at red24.com. These events have the potential to turn violent, as these are often infiltrated by disruptive elements, such as members of the anarchist Black Bloc. A great source for additional views from Brazil, specifically related to the World Cup, can be found on the “A Brazilian Operating in This Area” – blog, by the local journalist, Mauricio Savarese.

What should Pele be concerned about?

According to the red24 2014 Threat Forecast, despite the media focus on protests, the most apparent risk during the World Cup is the high threat from crime in Brazil, particularly in major urban centres. Already-high petty crime rates will likely be elevated, particularly near stadiums, popular tourist areas and transport hubs; violent crime will remain an ever-present concern, mainly in lower-income areas and within cities at night. The government will attempt to reduce this risk through increased surveillance and an overall heightened police presence; however, official efforts are likely to fall short of significantly reducing the risk of crime in host cities.

A further concern is that of express kidnapping. This form of kidnapping involves victims being held temporarily while they are forced to withdraw money or hand over PIN details so that money can be withdrawn from ATMs. Although the use of bogus taxis or rogue taxi drivers is a primary modus operandi of express kidnappers, incidents are also perpetrated near outdoor and isolated indoor ATMs. In recent years, there have been a number of instances of this short-term form of abduction affecting foreign nationals in Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo and other cities that are set to host World Cup matches. Although somewhat mitigated by an increased security force presence, there is still a credible concern of express kidnapping facing those visiting host cities.

It should also be noted that there is a risk of terrorism at the World Cup that is associated with all international events. Lastly, those visiting host cities are not immune from the prevailing kidnapping for ransom risk.

Brazil security Overview of risks in Brazil

Pele’s concern over protests in Brazil is therefore valid, but it is unlikely at this stage that these gatherings will ruin the World Cup. As seen above, there are various other concerns of which visitors to Brazil should be made aware. However, by adopting a number of commonsense precautions, these risks can be greatly mitigated.

red24 has launched a tailored package of services for visitors to the 2014 World Cup. This has been designed to provide travellers with detailed advice, security updates and 24/7 telephone support during the event. For more information about this package, please click here

Article by Barend Lutz, follow him @LutzBarend

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Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics Security Package

Sochi 2014

Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics Security Package

red24 is offering strategic security advice, analysis and support in our Sochi Winter Olympics Package.

red24’s Sochi Package has been designed to provide travellers with initial advice, security updates and emergency support. The package is available for both the duration of the 2014 Winter Olympics (7 to 23 February 2014) and Paralympics (7 to 16 March 2014).

Why you should be cautious at Sochi

Listen to our podcast on security at the games

Read our free security briefing

Sign Up

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