Like it or loathe it, globalisation is a reality. We interact with people in other countries to an extent that no previous generation has ever come close to. If you own a business you almost certainly deal with overseas clients or suppliers. If you’re studying an advanced degree you’ll probably be looking at doing at least part of it in a foreign university. For everyone else, foreign vacations are now commonplace – and exotic destinations are increasingly popular.
Unfortunately, even as the world has become more connected it’s also grown more unstable. Nationalist, ethnic and religious conflicts have replaced the old binary of the Cold War, and while the risk of a global thermonuclear war is certainly a lot lower than it used to be that’s been compensated for by an increased danger of being assaulted or kidnapped by a multitude of aggrieved factions. If you’re travelling to certain countries – and the list is alarmingly long – you need to be aware of the threats to your personal security.
Big multinational corporations can hire the expertise of a private security company – if you’re looking for one I recommend GardaWorld International – but for most people the cost is prohibitive. If you’re planning to visit your overseas contractor’s factory, or your child wants to spend a gap year in a potentially risky country, you probably aren’t in a position to spend several thousand dollars on an information package from one of the global security specialists.
Of course you can do your own research online, but that has serious limitations. Standard resources like Wikipedia are very prone to bias, while open-source government publications like the CIA World Factbook are strong on raw statistics but tend to be weak on analysis. Travel review sites like TripAdvisor are also too unreliable to trust your personal security to.
There is another option. With sixteen years’ experience as a military analyst, I can draw on both open-source information and an extensive network of professional contacts to produce an up to date, unbiased and genuinely useful security assessment of your planned destination. I offer a range of products that can be further customised to meet your exact requirements:
- Country overview. A summary of key statistics plus an overview of the political situation, focusing on threats to stability and potential risks to visitors. A country overview is priced at $50; a PowerPoint presentation with briefing notes can be supplied for an additional $50.
- Security brief. An in-depth look at the country’s security situation including political stability, external threats, crime and terrorism. Includes the standard country overview, and priced at $250. A PowerPoint presentation with notes costs an additional $75.
- Cultural brief. A detailed examination of all major ethnic and religious groups within the country, looking at social status, inter-group relations and cultural values. Includes advice on interacting with each group. Also includes the standard country overview. Price from $250 for the document and from $75 for accompanying PowerPoint.
- Target Audience Analysis brief. I was a qualified British Army Psychological Operations Officer, and can provide a full assessment on how to influence and communicate with the population of a selected country. This product includes the standard country overview plus statistics on media access (telephone, internet and TV ownership) and an investigation of significant media providers within the country. It also includes analysis of marketing trends and stylistic elements, allowing you to effectively target marketing or informational material. Price on request; includes PowerPoint with notes.
- Military brief. A thorough analysis of the country’s armed forces, including police and paramilitary units. Includes full equipment lists, plus all available information on order of battle, training and doctrine. Also covers assessment of strengths and weaknesses, including recent operational performance where applicable. Priced at $400 including PowerPoint with notes.
- Military study. Detailed analysis of a weapon system, unit or doctrine element. This is a custom product, so content is tailored to what you require. Price on request; includes PowerPoint with notes.
- Personality study. A detailed analysis of a single person, including biography and significant life events. Covers identifiable personality traits and likely responses to hypothetical situations. Price on request; includes PowerPoint with notes.
- Intelligence Summary. A regular update on the security situation within a country or region. Covers political developments and significant activity, such as serious crimes, military operations and terrorist attacks. Consists of a document plus a PowerPoint presentation with briefing notes. Pricing for a single country is $250 for a monthly update, $150 for a weekly update or $350 per week for a daily update plus weekly summary and analysis. Please ask for pricing on regional/multi-country updates.
All products are supplied as a print-ready PDF. Where applicable a PowerPoint presentation covering key points of the document, along with appropriate imagery and/or videos, will be included. The PowerPoint will include briefing notes in bullet point format, allowing you to quickly disseminate the information within your organisation.
With the exception of Intelligence Summaries all products will be delivered within one week of ordering. Delivery of regular Intelligence Summaries can begin 72 hours after ordering. If required, daily updates can commence 24 hours after ordering for an additional one-off fee of $150. To order products just fill in the contact form; I’ll get back to you via email to discuss exactly what you require.