The most important step is to assess the level of threat faced by your
family. Questions you will need to ask yourself include:
Families who own and run successful businesses are often in the limelight
more than they would like– and that attention can bring with it a host of
unwanted problems. Kidnap, and the emotional distress that it brings, is high
on the list of these problems, and wealthy families should seriously consider
the extent to which they require both protection – in the form of security –
and insurance against the financial consequences of a kidnapping. There are
also steps that can be taken to help with the emotional trauma of kidnapping.
– Are you particularly prominent family, often photographed in the media?
– Do you have any business interests in politically or morally sensitive areas?
– Do you have any security arrangements already in place?
– How predictable are your movements?
Answering questions such as these will help to assess your family’s
vulnerability to kidnap or extortion events.
Personal and property security protocols
All personal security advice should be specifically related to the individuals
concerned and their respective lifestyles. Without entering into exhaustive
detail, there are five basic principles of security to be followed:
– Awareness: be aware that a security threat does exist, and
be prepared to react rapidly if the security situation changes.
– Low profile: criminals will not normally target people unless
they have come to public attention in some way. As far as possible, try not to
attract unnecessary attention to yourself.
– Unpredictability: families should take care not to stick to a
rigid routine that will allow criminals the opportunity to stage a kidnap.
Always vary routes, times of departure and modes of transport if possible.
– Communications: make sure all family members have contact
details for family and police/emergency forces. As well as a mobile phone,
carry a phone card if they are in use in your country of residence.
– Security layers: adopt all necessary security measures and
maintain these measures. Make sure your security is in place 24 hours a day,
seven days a week since it will always be attacked at its weakest point.