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More Information and Contacts

In addition to this website, more information about counter terrorism and security advice can be found on the following websites:

UK Government


This provides a single point of access to all government departments.  Here you can see all their policies, announcements, publications, statistics and consultations.

Home Office - Terrorism and National Emergencies Guide

This section of the Home Office website includes:

MI5 – the Security Service

The Security Service (MI5) is responsible for protecting the United Kingdom against threats to national security. Their website provides information about the Security Service, the threats it counters, links to sources of security advice and details of careers with the Service.

Security Advice

Centre for Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI)

The CPNI protects national security by providing protective security advice.  Their advice covers physical security, personnel security and cyber security/information assurance.

National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaTCSO)

NaCTSO provide help, advice and guidance on all aspects of counter terrorism protective security. 

Get Safe Online – free online security advice

Get Safe Online is a joint initiative between the Government, law enforcement, leading businesses and the public sector that provides computer users and small businesses with free, independent, user-friendly advice to help them use the internet confidently, safely and securely.

British Standards Institution (BSI)

BSI is the world's leading provider of standards covering every aspect of the modern economy. For example, BS 7799 deals with securing business information, BS 7499 covers static site guarding and mobile patrol services, and BS 7858 is the code of practice for security screening of individuals employed in a security environment. CPNI (see above) has also worked with the BSI to develop PAS 97: 2012 A Specification for Mail Screening and Security.

Disclosure and Barring Service

The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) helps employers make safer recruitment decisions. It also prevents unsuitable people from working with vulnerable groups, including children, through its criminal record checking and barring functions.

Business Continuity

Business Continuity Institute (BCI)

The mission of the BCI is to promote business continuity management worldwide. It provides an internationally recognised certification scheme for business continuity practitioners and is involved in the development of international standards. The BCI website includes details of its business continuity planning guides and conferences, training events and exhibitions.

Continuity Forum

An online resource for business continuity management professionals, providing advice and support services for organisations wishing to develop their business continuity planning and management.

Support for organisations and individuals to challenge extremist ideology

MAMA Project provides a means for such incidents to be reported, recorded and analysed, working to ensure this data is accurate and reliable and the victims and witnesses affected receive support

CONTEST Government Strategy

COuNter TErrorism STrategy

CONTEST is the Government’s long-term strategy to respond to the threat of both domestic and international terrorism.

The aim of CONTEST is to reduce the risk to the UK and its interests overseas from terrorism, so that people can go about their lives freely and with confidence.

CONTEST is split in to four strands:

  • Pursue: to stop terrorist attacks.
  • Prevent: to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism.
  • Protect: to strengthen our protection against terrorist attacks.
  • Prepare: when an attack cannot be stopped, to mitigate its impact.

The work of Northamptonshire Police and all police forces across the country comes from these four strands. 

The CONTEST Strategy is available here.

Further information about the government’s counter terrorism policy is available on the GOV.UK website.

Advice to staff in post rooms

Delivered items, which include letters, parcels, packages and anything delivered by post or courier, have been a commonly used terrorist device. A properly conducted risk assessment should give you a good idea of the likely threat to your organisation and indicate precautions you need to take.

Delivered items may be explosive or incendiary. Anyone receiving a suspicious delivery is unlikely to know which type it is, so procedures should cater for every eventuality. A delivered item will probably have received fairly rough handling in the post and so is unlikely to detonate through being moved, but any attempt at opening it may set it off. Unless delivered by courier, it is unlikely to contain a timing device. Delivered items come in a variety of shapes and sizes; a well-made one will look innocuous but there may be tell-tale signs.

Indicators of a suspicious delivered item:

  • it is unexpected or of unusual origin or from an unfamiliar sender
  • there is no return address or the address cannot be verified
  • it is poorly or inaccurately addressed, e.g. incorrect title, spelt wrongly, title but no name or addressed to an individual no longer with the company the address has been printed unevenly or in an unusual way the writing is in an unfamiliar or unusual style
  • there are unusual postmarks or postage paid marks
  • a Jiffy bag, or similar padded envelope, has been used
  • it seems unusually heavy for its size. Most letters weigh up to about 30g, whereas most effective letter bombs weigh 50–100g and are 5mm or more thick
  • it has more than the appropriate value of stamps for its size and weight
  • it is marked ‘personal' or ‘confidential'
  • it is oddly shaped or lopsided
  • the envelope flap is stuck down completely (a normal letter usually has an ungummed gap of 35mm at the corners)
  • there is a pin-sized hole in the envelope or package wrapping
  • there is any unusual smell, including but not restricted to almonds, ammonia or marzipan
  • it has greasy or oily stains on the envelope
  • there is an additional inner envelope and it is tightly taped or tied (however, in some organisations sensitive material is sent in double envelopes as standard procedure).

What you can do

Although any suspect item should be treated seriously, remember that the great majority will be false alarms and a few may be hoaxes. Try to ensure that your procedures, while effective, are not needlessly disruptive. Take the following into account in your planning:

  • seek advice from your local police on the threat and on defensive measures
  • consider processing all incoming post and deliveries at one point only. This should ideally be off-site or in a separate building, or at least in an area that can easily be isolated and in which deliveries can be handled without taking them through other parts of the building
  • make sure that all staff who handle post are briefed and trained. Include reception staff. Encourage regular correspondents to put their return address on each item
  • ensure that all sources of incoming post (e.g. Royal Mail, couriers, hand delivery) are included in your screening process)
  • ideally, post rooms should have independent air conditioning and alarm systems, as well as scanners and x-ray machines. Post rooms should also have their own washing and shower facilities, including soap and detergent
  • staff need to be aware of the usual pattern of deliveries and to be briefed of unusual deliveries. Train them to open post with letter openers (and with minimum movement), to keep hands away from noses and mouths and always to wash their hands afterwards. Staff should not blow into envelopes or shake them.
  • consider whether staff handling post need protective equipment such as latex gloves and face masks (seek advice from a qualified health and safety expert). Keep overalls and footwear available in case staff need to remove contaminated clothing
  • make certain that post opening areas can be promptly evacuated. Rehearse evacuation procedures and route, which should include washing facilities in which contaminated staff could be isolated and treated
  • prepare signs for display to staff in the event of a suspected or actual attack

Secure Your Fertiliser

Visit Secure Your Fertiliser if you're part of the farming and growing community. The website encourages people to think about the security of their fertilisers and do something about the security of their fertilisers.

There is various information on how to securely store fertiliser, why it should be secure, faqs and more.

To get the message across the country, the two UK manufacturers of fertiliser – Kemira and Terra have undertaken to start printing the logo (right) on their bags as well as including it on fertiliser invoices/delivery notes. It is anticipated that some of the main importers will soon follow suit.


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