UK terror threat level lowered to ‘Substantial’ by Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre

Thames House where the JTAC is based

Thames House where the JTAC is based

The threat level posed in the UK from terrorism has been reduced to ‘Substantial’, meaning that an attack on the mainland is likely. The decision to lower the assessment from ‘Severe’ – meaning an attack is highly likely – was made by the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre (JTAC), which is based at Thames House in London. This is an independent body of experts who evaluate available intelligence alongside terrorist capability and intentions.

Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, head of Counter-Terrorism Policing, commented: “The reduction to ‘Substantial’ indicates positive developments in reducing the threat from terrorism, but still means an attack is likely. Counter-Terrorism Policing has around 800 live counter-terrorism investigations nationally, while 24 attack plots have been thwarted since the atrocity in Westminster in March 2017. It’s vital that we all maintain a high level of vigilance and continue to invest in strong protective security measures designed to deter future attacks.”

The festive period is fast approaching and, coupled with a General Election in early December, the UK’s towns and cities will be extremely busy. Officers will continue to monitor the threat locally and respond appropriately. There will not be any change to the police service’s levels of commitment when it comes to protecting communities.

In July this year the threat level system was changed to reflect all forms of terrorism, including from right and left wing terrorism. The UK was last at ‘Substantial’ in August 2014. Since then it has been at ‘Severe’, rising briefly to ‘Critical’ on two occasions in May and September 2017.

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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