As the nature of security threats facing airports is constantly evolving, so too must the mechanisms for detecting and preventing them. Together with the traditional threats, cyber attacks and drone strikes are two examples of the new kinds of dangerous scenarios against which airports need to protect themselves. Given the sheer size of many of the world's airports, and their strategic role in a nation's economy, this is a hugely important challenge.
Technology is key to prevention
Threats are getting more and more sophisticated. The security approach has to be more proactive, applying the smartest technologies such as video analytics, drone detection and identification, cyber probes, etc. to detect and prevent intrusions in restricted areas, abnormal behaviours, abandoned objects, or unusual people or crowd movement.
At Thales we have undertaken many projects in these precise fields in Dubai, Singapore, Madrid airports, etc., the latest ones being New York's JFK (United States of America) and Muscat & Salalah (Sultanate of Oman)
All airport employees play a role in facing the security challenge
In addition to our technological expertise, we believe it is also vitally important to get all airport teams onboard so that everybody works together when it comes to security.
"Changing habits and making people aware is a vital step towards protection," says Marco Scarpa, Security Business Domain Director at Thales in Italy. "We can then help to transform the culture from being purely reactive to being proactive in this regard," he concludes.
While it is not possible to create a zero-risk environment, we remain committed to understanding the changing threats facing airports and to providing the most effective technologies, processes and people to tackle them to ensure that they remain safe places for passengers and airport staff worldwide.