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Major event security highlighted at Soccerex Asia

A leading safety and security expert from the International Centre for Sport Security (ICSS) has highlighted the need for enhanced international collaboration and information sharing at a global level between sports and countries in major event security.

The call came on the back of the growing influence of technology and the increasing security challenges facing host and bidding nations.

Speaking at the Soccerex Asia Forum, Andrew Cooke, ICSS Director of Security Operations, underlined how the growing influence of technology in sport is resulting in the need for more sports and countries around the world to collaborate and ensure lessons are learnt in combatting security issues in sport.

Cooke said:

At a time where technology is playing an increasingly central role in our lives and the way people consume major sport events, there is now a very real need for governments of host cities and nations, as well as sporting bodies, to better collaborate and share information at a global level about how to effectively address the growing challenges major sport events are facing around their safety and security.

As we have seen over the last 12 months, hosting and bidding nations continue to face a growing number of challenges when it comes to major event security. These include issues around cybersecurity, fan violence and crowd management issues, terrorism, crime and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to name just a few.

As an organisation established to serve and safeguard sport, the ICSS encourages an integrated approach to sharing knowledge and expertise in sport safety and security. We are also firmly committed to bringing together knowledge and experience from all sectors around the world and sharing our expertise to help host cities and nations ultimately deliver a safe and secure event.

Cooke said that at a time when major events are looking to cut costs yet the number of security threats are continuing to increase, the need for global collaboration and collective action in field of major event security has never been more important.

He added:

The landscape of major event security is rapidly changing. As a result, it is vital that security planning is properly integrated and communicated at a local and international level and that any risks are minimised throughout the whole athlete and spectator experience – right from border control through to the field of play.