The world we live in today is shaped in large part by the security incidents and terrorist attacks of the past... some we know about, and some still hidden in the shadows. As a counterterrorism agent with the U.S. State Department, Fred Burton was involved in many high-profile investigations including the search for and arrest of Ramzi Yousef, the mastermind of the first World Trade Center bombing as well as directing multiple proactive protective intelligence efforts for visiting dignitaries like Yassir Arafat and Princess Diana.
In the Ontic Protective Intelligence Podcast, Fred speaks with experts about real-life incidents ranging from the 1966 University of Texas shooting, to high profile kidnappings and workplace violence incidents, to name a few. Join us as we dig into the world of physical security and protective intelligence—the past, the present and the future.
Ontic Acquires SIGMA, Advances Physical Threat Management Standard
As social and political issues continue to fuel threats and disruptions that span companies, communities, and educational institutions, physical security professionals are in need of a holistic, highly effective, technology-driven approach. One that not only provides a comprehensive view of the threat landscape and surfaces critical knowledge but that guides the identification of threats, gathering of information, assessment, creation and implementation of plans for addressing threats.
In this bonus episode, Fred sits down with Ontic’s CEO and co-founder, Luke Quanstrom, and CEO and founder of SIGMA Threat Management Associates (SIGMA), Dr. Marisa Randazzo to announce a milestone in both companies' history — Ontic’s acquisition of SIGMA. With this, the Ontic platform combines protective intelligence and threat assessment methodology to become indispensable for the efficient and productive workflows of physical security and safety professionals.
The three discuss what this means for the future of Ontic and protective intelligence as well as their shared commitment to help organizations proactively seek out the potential for problems, and address them before a negative event can occur. Tune in for this exciting announcement and follow along as we continue our mission of making businesses safer by serving intelligence to those who protect.
Combating Extremism, Terrorism and Hate from Anti-Defimation League’s Oren Segal
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has over a century of experience in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education and fighting hate online. One of the many people at ADL that has played a key role in continuing this mission is Oren Segal who has spent the large majority of his career working with ADL’s Center on Extremism, most recently as its Vice President. The Center is recognized as the foremost authority on extremism, providing resources, expertise and training that enables law enforcement, public officials and internet and technology companies to identify and counter emerging threats.
In this episode, Fred and Oren discuss how ADL leverages intelligence to deliver some of the most accurate (but visually alarming) information on extremist movements and hate crimes throughout the country. Oren also shares trends he’s observed in the past two decades, and as of late, as well as what surprises him most as we approach the years ahead.
Oren joined ADL in 1998 after working for The New York Times and the Jewish Community Federation in San Francisco. Much of Oren’s 21 years with ADL has been devoted to evaluating the activity and tactics of extremist groups and movements from across the ideological spectrum, training law enforcement officers and publishing reports and articles on a wide range of extremist topics. In 2006, Oren was recognized by the FBI for his exceptional service in the public interest. He was named to the Forward’s list of 50 influential, intriguing and inspiring American Jews in 2019.
Preventing the Next Attack: Implications of Returning to In-Person Activity
As society cautiously re-opens and returns to in-person activity and work, violence and physical threats to businesses are occurring at an unsettling, record-high pace. This is a result of multiple factors, from pent up economic and political frustrations to revised health and safety protocols in the office. However, there’s someone who isn’t passively scrolling through these headlines and reacting with a disjointed plan. Her name is Dr. Jillian Peterson, President and Co-Founder of The Violence Project. Jillian has dedicated her career to surfacing trends from over 180 attacks to reduce violence in society.
In this episode, Jillian returns to our podcast to discuss her recent research. Given the uptick in tragic events in 2021 — from national events like the U.S. Capitol Riots to private sector threats and insider attacks — she acknowledges patterns in activity and provides advice for what businesses can do moving forward to catch signs earlier and offer help to those who need it — before it’s too late.
Jillian is President and Co-Founder of the Violence Project, a nonpartisan research center and think tank dedicated to reducing violence in society. She is also a Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Hamline University. Jillian launched her career as a special investigator in New York City, researching the psycho-social life histories of men facing the death penalty. Jillian earned her Doctorate in psychology and social behavior from the University of California, Irvine. She is trained in restorative justice, violence mediation, crisis intervention, de-escalation, and suicide prevention.
Pre-order Jillian’s book on Amazon (available September 7).
A Glimpse into Opening a Professional Sports Stadium from Austin FC’s Director of Safety and Security
When you attend an Austin FC professional soccer game there is a palpable energy felt within the stadium and surrounding metro area. However, beneath the surface of the sea of green and white, there are intricate and proactive security measures in place to make the event enjoyable for all.
In this episode, Fred talks with the individual behind it all — the Director of Safety and Security with Austin FC and Q2 Stadium, Mike Fogel. They discuss Mike’s philosophy to managing security for Austin’s first professional sports team and the challenging elements that go along with it — from unruly fans, to protecting celebrities and VIPS, to motivating contract security staff. Mike also shares his thoughts on how the industry will evolve in the coming years and the role technology will play.
Mike has served in his current role since October of 2020. He oversees all physical security, event security, and 24-hour security for the first professional sports stadium in Austin, Texas, as well as the St. David’s Performance Center. Additionally, Mike is tasked with coordinating with the City of Austin on the management of the public safety services including police, fire/rescue, medical, and EOD/HAZMAT. Prior to joining Austin FC, Mike was the Security Manager at AT&T Stadium and the Dallas Cowboys where he had a very similar role for one of the premier facilities in all professional sports.
Aside from his duties with Austin FC, Mike is a member of numerous committees around the country including the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) and the International Association of Venue Managers (IAVM). He has attained NCS4’s Certified Sports Security Professional designation, he is an IAVM Trained Crowd Manager, and has completed the U.S. Department of Homeland Security NIMS Training program.
The Balancing Act Behind Sporting and Entertainment Venues Opening to the Public
As events cautiously open up to the public, security teams are faced with an unforeseen element of protection — personal health and safety. Event security teams are forced to weigh the benefits of increased security measures with the goals of the venue’s event, making it enjoyable, profitable, and well-attended.
In this episode, Fred discusses sporting and entertainment events with a security expert who has had a hand in planning some of the most high-profile ones, Frank Rodman, President and Co-Founder of TorchStone Global. Frank's experiences shed light on the level of complexity these events require, the impact on professional athletes, and COVID-19’s lasting effect on the industry.
Frank Rodman is a security executive with over twenty-five years of qualitative experience building pragmatic security solutions. He has worked with diplomats, business leaders, and ultra high net worth families to develop sophisticated strategies to avoid risk. Prior to TorchStone, Frank served as head of global security and investigations for the family partners of one of the largest private investment firms in the United States. Frank was also a senior security consultant for Dell Computer Corporation, where he developed and personally executed protection plans for the company’s founder and Chairman.
When Seconds Matter: How Active Shooter Training Saves Lives
The average attack is typically around six minutes. The hard truth is that law enforcement is able to confront the issue while it is occurring only half of the time. This leaves tremendous opportunity for training and informing the civilian response to protect themselves and the organizations they represent.
In this episode, Fred discusses the ALERRT Center at Texas State with John Curnutt, Assistant Director and Hunter Martaindale, Ph.D., Director of Research. They share how important it is to instill a culture of preparedness (vs. fear) in organizations so everyone can prepare, or at least be aware, of these low frequency but very high intensity events.
The Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERRT) Center at Texas State University was created in 2002 as a partnership between Texas State University, the San Marcos, Texas Police Department and the Hays County, Texas Sheriff’s Office to address the need for active shooter response training for first responders. In 2013, ALERRT at Texas State was named the National Standard in Active Shooter Response Training by the FBI.
John Curnutt is one of the founding members of the Program and works for Texas State University as the Assistant Director for ALERRT. He is a former municipal police officer in Texas, serving nearly eighteen years on a multi-agency SWAT Team as a point-man, assistant team leader, team leader and then sniper. Dr. Hunter Martaindale is responsible for maintaining ALERRT’s research agenda. He holds a Ph.D. in Criminal Justice from Texas State University, and he actively researches active shooter events, tactical police training, and the effects of stress on law enforcement decision-making.
ALERRT hosts a national integrated response conference each fall. Check out the details around this year’s event, October 30 - November 2, 2021. https://www.alerrtconference.org/