One of the difficulties in combatting terrorism is maintaining public support and vigilance over time as the memories of atrocities on mainland Britain fade. The recent conviction of nine men who plotted to bomb the London Stock Exchange and build a terrorist training camp is a reminder that the threat has not gone away. However, the Metropolitan Police campaign, “It’s probably nothing, but…“, will help reinforce the message that public vigilance is going to be essential – particularly in the run-up to the Olympics.
As the Met says:
“Everyone who works, lives and visits London has a role to play in helping to counter the terrorist threat which remains real and serious.”
The four week campaign consists of a 40 second radio advert to be aired on Kiss FM, Capital, LBC and GOLD, and press advertisements in local publications and minority media titles. The activity will also be supported by a digital presence on Spotify, and in excess of 1.4 million leaflets being delivered to households across London.
The radio advert recognises that some people may be reluctant to report suspicious activity or behaviour, such as someone paying for a car in cash but not taking it for a test drive, because ‘Chances are, it’s probably nothing’.
But it goes on to encourage people to think ‘But what if it isn’t'?
Just one piece of information could be vital in helping disrupt terrorist planning and, in turn, save lives.
The press advert seeks to reassure Londoners that if they see or hear something that could be terrorist related, they should trust their instincts and call the confidential Anti-Terrorist Hotline.