SMI - Consulting

Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA): One of the Last

Dark Places of the Earth

In Joseph Conrad’s classic novel Heart of Darkness, the unexplored and unmapped jungles of the African Congo in the 1890s are referred to as “one of the last dark places of the earth.” Today, with international travel accessible to virtually anywhere, along with the advent of on-line satellite mapping programs, one would assume that no such uncharted areas remain on the planet. However, there does exist one last bastion of “no man’s land,” left virtually unexplored by modern civilizations. This forbidden land is known as the Federally Administered Tribal Areas, or FATA, and is a breeding ground for the Taliban and al-Qaeda to conduct terrorist activity.

Located in the mountainous region between Afghanistan and Pakistan, the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) is comprised of seven regions or agencies; Bajur, Mohmand, Kurram, Khyber, Orazkzai, North Waziristan, and South Waziristan. Roughly the size of Rhode Island, the FATA is notorious for being a hotbed of a range of difficult issues: among them, the extremely low literacy rates of its tribal inhabitants – the regional average is just 22%;1 opium trafficking and other signs of lawlessness; an underdeveloped economy with only 34% of the population rising above the poverty line; and, of course, the numerous madrassas and Taliban training camps continuously recruiting, sheltering and training Taliban fighters (as well as other al-Qaeda affiliated supporters).

An Ungovernable Territory

Considered an ungovernable territory of Pakistan, the FATA is inaccessible to U.S. military and ISAF forces operating across the border in Afghanistan. For this reason, Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda operatives slipped across the Torra Bora mountain range from Afghanistan into the FATA’s Mohmand Agency, to elude the initial special operations teams assigned to kill or capture him following 9/11. Prior to Operation Neptune’s Spear, the joint CIA-Navy Seal operation that killed bin Laden on May 1st of this year in Abbottabod, Pakistan, intelligence analysts commonly assumed that bin Laden was hiding out in either North or South Waziristan (of the seven Agencies, North and South Waziristan are geographically and politically the most difficult to access, a feature that has critical implications for US and Pakistani military strategy).

The FATA is home to 3.3 million ethnic Pashtuns, a centuries old tribal society that, with the exception of AK-47s and other weapons, has not evolved much in the past three hundred years. Governance in the region, like the Durand line conflict (the arbitrarily drawn line which divides Afghanistan and Pakistan), is for the most part a remnant of the British colonial system. To “enforce” the FATA, the Pakistani government assigns Political Agents (PAs) to govern each agency. These Political Agents visit villages from time-to-time to collect taxes and assist with tribal disputes. Law enforcement lies in the hands of a Frontier Corps, headed by Pakistan’s military officers. However, under Pashtun tradition, most “justice” is enforced through an eye-for-an-eye code known as a “blood feud.” Each tribe imposes punishments for theft, murder, and/or rape internally, without the consent or notification to the Pakistani government. The Frontier Crimes Regulations (FCR) is the governing code surviving from British colonial rule; it is decried by the locals and is seldom, if ever, effective in stemming local feuds. The Supreme Court and High Court of Pakistan have no jurisdiction in the region, 2 as the FATA is deemed virtually lawless.

Terrorism and the FATA

The post-9/11 years, understandably, have created new conflicts and reinforced attitudes that had existed in previous years. Pakistani policy toward the inhabitants of FATA, beyond the FCR, has encouraged the emergence of a population that is more likely to support religious extremism. Indeed, the 1997 “adult franchise” created a situation whereby only leaders of madrassas and mosques could lobby for votes. In 1997 and 2002, Islamic leaders were elected as FATA representatives – a sign that mullahs had displaced secular Maliks (religious scholars who initially welded authority and leadership within Pashtun tribes). The Taliban thus found a fertile ground on which to execute their projects.

The Taliban, and other Al Qaeda supporters, are now believed to be present in all FATA agencies and are in full control of Waziristan, Orakzai and Bajaur. The local government no longer has power in 24% of the region, and analysts maintain that the spread of Taliban militancy is likely in the future.3 U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta maintains that al-Qaeda’s newly promoted leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri is most likely in the FATA.4 Add to this the animosity of tribesmen to the Pakistani military and intelligence forces – the infamous ISI – and a sketch of the present Af-Pak dilemma is obvious.

One of the most dangerous terrorist groups operating in the FATA is Tehik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). TTP was formed by Waziri tribesman Baitullah Mehsud as a union of various militant groups with the aim of sending fighters to fight the US in Afghanistan. Baitullah, who was killed by a CIA drone attack in 2009 (later to be replaced by his deputy Hakimullah Mehsud), was particularly ruthless in his usage of suicide bombing attacks. According to a United Nations report, TTP is responsible for 80% of the suicide bombing attacks in Pakistan, as well as being responsible for the assignation of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.5 On December 30, 2010, seven CIA officers were killed in a suicide bomb attack by Jordanian double agent Humam Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi at Forward Operating Base Camp Chapman in Khost, Afghanistan. In a video later released by TTP, al-Balawi declares that the attack was to be in retaliation of Baitullah Mehsud’s death. Hakimullah Mehsud is seen standing next to al-Balawi in the video.

Other emerging Pakistani terrorist organizations like Hizbul Mujahideen, Harkatul Mujahideen, Lashkar-e-Tayyaba, Jaish-e-Muhamamd, Sipah-e-Sahaba, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, Lashkar-e-Islam, Ansar-ul-Islam, Amar-bil-Maroof, and Tahreek-e-Nifaz-e-Shariat-e-Muhammadi have expanded their recruiting base by propagating their anti-western messaging in the madrassas (religious schools) in and around the FATA. This fertile terrorist breeding ground has become a magnet for those who wish to wage jihad against the “infidels” and has allowed for a greater number of extremist demagogues to seize political power. Furthering their cause, these new Islamist figures have connections with Pakistan’s Islamist parties, the Taliban and Al Qaeda. Meanwhile, monetary support from the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait is pouring in to Taliban training camps and madrassas. It is no wonder that Time magazine has used the term “Talibanistan” to refer to the region.6

Addressing the Problem

In 2004, 80,000 Pakistani troops entered FATA and met with hostility from the Taliban and Waziri tribes. But opposition is never the only problem when it comes to the Pakistani military’s operations in this region; the military simply did not have the capability of leveling a serious blow against the militants, the result being the signing of peace accords requiring the release of prisoners and a troop drawback, which in turn has caused the emergence of a more powerful Taliban in the border areas. Nothing testifies more to the weakness and unwillingness of the Pakistani military in dealing with militants in the FATA.

One difficulty has been determining Pakistan’s role in either fighting or supporting the local militants. The presence of ethnic Pashtuns is important to Pakistan: they are practicing Sunni Muslims who reside in rural areas beyond the FATA – their tribes straddle eastern Afghanistan and northwest Pakistan – and are thus capable of expanding Pakistan’s influence in the region. This puts the Pashtuns in the middle of a conflict between Pakistan and Afghanistan, which has spanned decades: namely, the dispute over the Durand Line.

The dispute over the Durand line gives Pakistan incentive to attack Afghan villages and to continue building posts and fences inside Afghanistan. In the past year, Pakistan’s military has reportedly fired 800 rounds of missiles at its western neighbor.7 The movement of jihadists across the border is also beneficial.

Dividing the Pashtuns along the Durand line thus has the double effect of antagonizing the tribes and of reinforcing the conflict between the two countries. Pashtun tribes are in danger of forever remaining under Taliban rule.

One solution that has been proposed and partially implemented is aid. With one hospital bed for every 2,179 and one doctor for every 7,670 residents of FATA, and not a single university, there is no doubt that the tribes would benefit from development projects. However, the $7.5 million USAID package announced in 2007 has been widely criticized8 as bringing minimal development to the region, as corruption is widespread and measurements of effectiveness are difficult to gauge. Furthermore, it is no secret that any explicitly aid that is perceived as being in any way connected to the US falls prey to extreme criticism and is rejected by the Pakistani government itself, which is suspicious of any signs of increase in US involvement.

This fierce anti-American sentiment has been exacerbated in part by the controversial drone attacks, which increasingly have been a staple of US operations in the regionsince 2002, are often blamed for the Pashtun’s intractability. However, studies such as the one conducted by the Islamabad-based think tank, Aryana Institute for Regional Research and Advocacy, show that Pashtuns see the drones as “liberators” from Taliban coercion and the Pakistani military’s indiscriminate and intrusive attacks.9 Moreover, although drone strikes are regularly denounced by the Taliban as indiscriminate attacks on civilians, a January 2011 report by Bloomberg stated that civilian casualties in the strikes had apparently decreased, despite having been ramped up by Obama since 2009. According to the report, the U.S. Government believed that 1,300 militants and only 30 civilians had been killed in drone strikes since mid-2008, with no civilians killed since August 2010. 10Recent events in the region have also highlighted the success of US drone strikes, one of them being the recent alleged (at the time of this writing) death of Atiyah abd al-Rahman, Al Qaeda’s Number 2. Rahman assumed this role in AQ after bin Laden’s death; he had close ties to the Afghan Taliban. He was killed Mir Ali, a town in North Waziristan, that enduring hub of local militants and the Taliban. The success of this drone strike has raised hopes that finding Zawahiri is a similarly attainable goal. Pakistan, by contrast, has initially denied that it was Rahman – and not local militants – that had been killed, and claimed that Rahman’s death would not deter AQ.

In a move that deviated from Pakistan’s official policy on US drone strikes – which is to deny their utility and appropriateness – Pakistani General Mehmood Ghayur has actually expressed approval of the drones. In a March 2011 briefing, he was quoted as stating that ''myths and rumors about U.S. Predator strikes and the casualty figures are many, but it's a reality that many of those being killed in these strikes are hardcore elements, a sizable number of them foreigners.''11 It is undeniable that, at the very least in North Waziristan – an area that Pakistan aims to avoid – drones have yielded concrete results.

Ultimately, remote drone strikes are an effective option for US operations in the FATA in terms of accuracy and the reduction of US casualties. On-the-ground operations carry a greater risk for US soldiers, and their utility is diminished when interrogation is not likely to yield actionable intelligence. The goal of the 2009 troop surge was to “disrupt, dismantle, and defeat al-Qaeda and its safe havens in Pakistan, and to prevent their return to Pakistan or Afghanistan,”12 and indeed, the use of drones has increased our ability to eliminate key AQ figures, and put within our reach the goal of protecting our soldiers.

Conclusion

It is somewhat shocking to think that in 2011 a lawless, tribal society – bent on the destruction of Western beliefs – has successfully flourished within the nuclear state of Pakistan. Equally disconcerting is the fact that the United States and the international community has tried unsuccessfully to purge the FATA of the Taliban, al-Qaeda, and other terrorist groups. Amid a currently strained relationship with Pakistan, the United States is at a crossroad as to how to proceed with future operations in an area that is hemorrhaging violence. One thing is for certain, if the United States fails to act, the Federally Administered Tribal Area will remain, like Conrad’s description, “one of the last dark places of the earth.”

1 FATA Secretariat, UNICEF and World Food Programme. 2009 Survey. Available at http://fata.gov.pk/files/MICS.pdf.
2 Pakistan Constitution. Part XII, Art. 247 and Art. 248. Available at http://www.pakistani.org/pakistan/ constitution/.
3 BBC. 2009 Survey. Available at http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8047504.stm.
4 Iqbal, A. (2011, July 10). Zawahiri Hiding in FATA: Panetta. Dawn. Available at
5 United Nations AMA. July 2011. Available at http://unama.unmissions.org/Portals/UNAMA/Documents/2011%20Midyear%20POC.pdf.
6 Time. (2007, March 22). The Truth About Talibanistan. Available at http://www.time.com/time/magazine/ article/0,9171,1601850-­‐1,00.html.
7 Shalizi, H. (2011, July 1). Afghanistan Won’t Fire Back on Pakistan: Karzai.Reuters. Available at http://news.yahoo.com/afghanistan-­‐wont-­‐fire-­‐back-­‐pakistan-­‐karzai-­‐124842643.html.
8 Perlez, J. New York Times. (2007, July 16). Aid to Pakistan in Tribal Areas Raises Concerns.New York Times. Available at http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/16/world/asia/16pakistan.
9 Taj, F. (2010, April 16). CIA Drone Strikes in Pakistan's FATA Region and the "Loss" of Actionable Intelligence: A Pashtun Perspective. Terrorism Monitor. pp. 4-­‐6. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.
10 Capaccio, T. and Bliss, J. (2011, January 31). US Said to Reduce Civilian Deaths after Reducing CIA Pakistan Strikes. Bloomberg. Available at http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-­‐01-­‐31/u-­‐s-­‐said-­‐to-­‐reduce-­‐ civilian-­‐deaths-­‐after-­‐increasing-­‐cia-­‐pakistan-­‐strikes.html.
11 Masood, S. (2011, March 10). Pakistani General Credits U.S. Drone Strikes. New York Times. p. 8. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.
12 President Barack Obama’s speech announcing the surge on December 1, 2009 at the United States Military Academy at West Point, West Point, NY-­‐ http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-­‐press-­‐office/remarks-­‐ president-­‐address-­‐nation-­‐way-­‐forward-­‐afghanistan-­‐and-­‐pakistan.
Proprietary Information – © SMI 2013 www.smiconsultancy.com

SMI Capability Statement Security Consulting

Capability Statement Security Consulting

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About SMI

Security Management International (SMI) is a global security consulting and intelligence advisory services provider. Our principal services include research and analysis, training, emergency response planning, vulnerability assessments, competitive intelligence and technical services. These services are used by numerous US and international clients including varying levels of government, Fortune 500 companies, utilities, law firms and associations. Our professionals have extensive experience and diverse backgrounds from successful careers in intelligence, military, law enforcement, national defense, emergency response, information technology and academia. Many of our employees have lived and worked abroad and regularly apply their extensive scope of knowledge and experience to our varied projects. Cage Code: 6PYL3 DUNS Number: 078402784

SMI Accomplishments

  • SMI Managing Director presented as Keynote Speaker at “SECURE Australia 2015” (topic: Corporate Espionage)
  • SMI Named Finalist for “Consultancy of the Year” at Security Excellence Awards 2013/2014
  • Recognized experts for instruction of “CARVER Target Analysis and Vulnerability Assessment Methodology”
  • Annual crisis management contracts with major Fortune 500 security departments

SMI Differentiators

  • Established in 2010
  • Performed consulting projects in 24 countries
  • Recognized Small Business
  • Managing Director author of Among Enemies: Counter-Espionage for the Business Traveler
  • Full-time security operations in Brazil since 2011
  • Several associates cleared TS/SCI
  • Experts in Counter-Espionage

The SMI Vision

SMI will always be be positioned to anticipate and counter both internal and external threats before they can act and to minimize damage should a penetration occur. The staff of SMI will always be the most competent and field tested personnel available. Finally, SMI strives to be #1 Choice for Threat, Vulnerability and Emergency Response across the Intelligence Community.

Services/Benefits Offered

Primary NAICS & Class Codes

  • 611430 – Management/Training
  • 928110 – National Security
  • 541618 – Management Consulting
  • 541690 – Other Scientific/Technical Consulting
  • 928120 – International Affairs

Current and Previous Clients

What Customers Say

“The value of a consultancy to me is the quality of their people and the fit to my application. SMI provided the right consultant with a background perfectly aligned to our needs. Their work will pay dividends far into our future.”
- Marty Mulligan, Former President and CEO, Rohde & Schwarz Federal Systems Inc.

“As part of the National Security Directorate, I was proud to have stood alongside of SMI and would highly recommend them for any future projects that require an expert knowledge of threat/vulnerability assessments and emergency response planning. Their personal commitment to this country’s security is evident and I consider myself fortunate to have worked with them. Security professionals do not come any better than these men!”
- Dave Lannom, Jr. National Security Directorate, Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Security Consulting

SMI - Security Consulting
Luke Bencie, Managing Director of SMI

Luke Bencie is the Managing Director for Security Management International, LLC.

In this capacity, Mr. Bencie has been a consultant to the US Department of State, US Department of Defense, Fortune 500 companies, as well as foreign governments. He specializes in conducting strategic and security management assessments, performing counterintelligence and due-diligence investigations, and also provides specialized intelligence advisory services. He is the author of "Among Enemies: Counter-Espionage for the Business Traveler" and "Global Security Consulting: How to Build a Thriving International Practice."

Mr. Bencie has worked in over 100 countries and has trained thousands of domestic and international students from police, military, and intelligence services on topics such as economic and industrial espionage, border security, intellectual property protection, counterfeiting/piracy, and recognizing/discouraging terrorist travel movement. Prior to establishing SMI, Mr. Bencie was a Senior Security Consultant for Raytheon Company in the Intelligence and Information Systems Division, and assigned to the emerging markets of Brazil, India and Lebanon.

Mr. Bencie previously served on the US Department of State’s Foreign Emergency Support Team. In this capacity, he was responsible for responding to terrorist attacks carried out against US targets overseas. As a result, he performed numerous trips to Iraq, Afghanistan, and other "hot spots" throughout the world.

Mr. Bencie holds graduate degrees in “National Security Studies” from The George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs and The American Military University, as well as an MBA from the University of Sarasota. He received his BA from Michigan State University and completed further course work from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Training Academy, and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research.

As the global business environment gets “flatter”, more and more organizations are moving operations overseas.  However, expanding a corporate footprint abroad can often times become a painful and very expensive undertaking – especially if the area of operation is in an underdeveloped area of the world.

Allow Security Management International to take the guesswork out of your planning.  At SMI, our associates have spent their careers establishing large-scale operations, across six continents, in countries that could be classified as either emerging markets or third-world failed states.  Whether your business takes you Africa or Asia, SMI can provide the following security consulting services, to ensure that your operations are profitable and your employees secure:

  • Risk Management 
  • Geopolitical Surveys 
  • Logistical Planning 
  • Area Studies 
  • Performance Improvement 
  • Security Compliance Audits
  • Duty of Care Reviews
  • Crisis Management

Security Management Consulting Process

Our consulting process begins with indetifying the problem with a client. Together we then define the scope of work for the project. We then go through a thorough process to provide deliverables for the client. Click to download the PDF.

    Assessment & Analysis
  • Threat and Vulnerability Assessment 
  • Conduct Target Analysis 
  • Form and Validate Solution 
    Integration & Training
  • Implement Plans, Processes, and Procedures 
  • Provide Training on Recommendations 
  • Have Employees Demonstrate Proficiency
    Application and Testing
  • Evaluate and Measure Effectiveness
  • Test Policies
  • Update Plans, Policies, and Procedures

Once we have worked through the work of scope with a client, we make sure that the problem was solved to client satisfaction and implement on-going maintenance and mitigation strategies.

security consulting process

Security Management

security managment

As our name SMI implies, we specialize in international security management.  Whether it is performing an assessment of your corporate security practices or helping you to establish security protocols in a foreign environment, the SMI team can provide your business with decades worth of security management experience.  Allow us to help you establish a security program that fits your organization’s budget and provide your employees, customers, and intellectual property with the highest levels of protection.


Critical Infrastructure Protection

SMI Critical Infrastructure

Today’s critical infrastructure, private businesses and government facilities are vulnerable to various levels of physical damage resulting from criminal attack, terrorism, and natural disasters.

Identifying and assessing these vulnerabilities provides organizations with the ability to mitigate these threats and allows them to best secure their property and protect personnel.

At Security Management International, our Critical Infrastructure Protection (CIP) Division offers intelligent security solutions when performing threat and vulnerability assessments, as well as emergency response planning.

Our client deliverables are not “boilerplate” reports, nor do we use rehashed security templates for every client, regardless of their industry. Instead, we fully recognize that each client’s threats and weaknesses are unique, thus requiring a customized approach to providing recommendations.

Our seasoned security professionals have a solid history in the fields of target analysis, vulnerability assessments, explosive blast effects, intelligence operations, emergency management and response planning. They have conducted threat assessments for national and international government and commercial customers, to include:

  • Embassies and Consulates
  • Domestic and International Government Buildings
  • Domestic and International Airports
  • Domestic and International Seaports
  • Border crossing and ports of entry
  • Telecommunications systems
  • Refineries
  • Natural gas systems
  • Water and power utilities
  • Nuclear facilities
  • Military installations
  • Fortune 500 businesses

In additional our associates are certified in a variety of vulnerability assessment methodologies, which are specifically utilized to meet and enhance the requirements of our clients. These certifications include:

  • CARVER – US Intelligence/Special Operations community methodology
  • RAM-C – Risk Assessment Methodology for Communities (Sandia National Laboratory)
  • Ram-W – Risk Assessment Methodology for Water (Sandia National Laboratory)
  • ASVACO – Software based security assessment methodologies
  • AIChE Chemical SVA – Chemical facilities and the support infrastructure
  • BZPP – Buffer Zone Protection Plan

Security Management International’s Critical Infrastructure Protection Division has the capabilities and resources available to rapidly respond to your organizations requirements for comprehensive threat and vulnerability assessments and emergency response planning.


Physical Penetration Testing

SMI Physical Penetration Testing

At Security Management International, our team of human intelligence (HUMINT) experts understand that the best defense is a good offense. For this reason, our physical security penetration tests (PENTESTS) start with an advanced and tailored understanding of the threats directly facing your organization. To maintain a good security posture, it is imperative to identify those threats and to know the vulnerabilities and response capabilities of each system and sub-system in question. Utilizing intelligence gathering techniques acquired from decades worth of global operations, our SMI HUMINT Team is able to provide our clients with a full picture of their vulnerabilities. Our tactics range from physical and technical surveillance, reconnaissance, casing/probing, elicitation, and social engineering.

The types of physical security penetration testing commonly executed by our team include:

  • External surveillance of the site
  • External information gathering on the facility
  • Alarm avoidance or access to alarms system
  • Physical entry attempts
  • Recruitment of employees/vendors
  • Social Engineering by exploiting the “human factor"

Data Loss Prevention and Intellectual Property Protection

SMI Data Loss Prevention and Intellectual Property Protection

According to the FBI, economic espionage costs American business between $300 billion and $1 trillion dollars each year in the theft/loss of intellectual property and business intelligence. Everyday, businesses from a variety of industries face increasing threats from competitors, disgruntled employees, hackers, and foreign governments. Do not allow your enemies to profit from your company’s research and development. At SMI, our associates are subject matter experts in intellectual property protection and data loss prevention.

With backgrounds in counterintelligence, cyber security, counterfeit investigations, and counter-espionage, our team stands ready to assist with:

  • Brand Protection & Mitigation Strategies
  • Data Loss Response and Recovery Procedures
  • IP Vulnerability Assessments
  • Internal/External Investigations
  • Competitive Intelligence Reports
  • Employee Counter-Espionage Training

Information Technology Assessments

Security Management International prides itself on providing our clients with experienced consultants who operate on the leading edge of cyber security.  With backgrounds from the National Security Agency (NSA), Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), and the private defense sector, our team of IT professionals are subject matter experts in terms of performing cyber security assessments, computer forensics investigations, as well as other customized technical solutions.

At SMI, our IT capabilities include:

  • Systems Integration
  • Network Simulation
  • Technology and Product Due Diligence
  • Advanced Concept: Mesh Overlay Technologies
  • Customized Communications Solutions
  • System and Application IV&V
  • Advanced Concept: Wireless Networking
  • Customized Security and Tool Sets

No matter what your cyber security needs, SMI professionals stand ready to assist.

SMI also offers training courses for executives and business travelers. Click to find out more about our Traveler Safety Courses including: Business Traveler Safety and Counter-Espionage CourseBusiness Traveler Safety and Counter-Espionage Course, Kidnapping and Awareness CourseKidnapping and Awareness Course, and Hostile Travel CourseHostile Travel Course.

In addition, SMI provides Security ConsultingSecurity Consulting, Security ManagementSecurity Management, and Intellectual Property ProtectionIntellectual Property Protection for executives, business owners, and Fortune 500 companies.


Big Data Analysis

SMI Big Data Analysis

It is no surprise that “big data analytics” has become the latest buzzwords in in the security sector. Analyzing huge volumes of data can help you uncover market patterns and trends, reveal relationships between individuals and organizations, and often predict future events. By studying the mass of data available within your industry, you will be able to be more informed and make better decisions.

Yet, in an ever-expanding world of information collection, the overload of data entering your organization can seem overwhelming to manage. While the capacity to gather mass-market data has become routine to most businesses, the ability to quickly decipher and determine how this information is relevant to strategic planning, typically remains a challenge.

At SMI, our team of professional intelligence analysts uses proprietary software that can take the burden off your organization’s shoulders. Let us perform your data mining, forecasting and predictive modeling in order to help you stay better informed and make better decisions.


Technical Surveillance Countermeasures (TSCM)

Technical Surveillance Countermeasures TSCM

Technical surveillance is the use of optical, audio, or electrical devices or systems to secretly collect information. As such, technical surveillance is a high-impact information security threat that affects businesses and governments alike.

In today’s global business environment, it is essential to prevent the compromise of trade secrets and sensitive information. To protect your bottom line, reputation, and competitive edge, SMI is offers sophisticated Technical Surveillance Countermeasures (TSCM), which can detect, locate and defeat modern surveillance threats. Allow the experts at SMI to bridge the gap between your organization’s cyber and physical security by analyzing the total environment for information security threats.

SMI can deploy its dedicated TSCM sweep team to your site to conduct a full TSCM inspection, including radio frequency analysis, telephone integrity testing, electronic cable and wire testing, and detailed physical inspections of the following:

  • Executive offices
  • Conference rooms
  • Laboratories
  • Residences
  • Vehicles/Yachts

Country Threat Assessments

SMI Country Threat Assessments

The need to understand the realities of other nations is vital to doing business internationally. In a global economy where emerging markets have sparked the investment interests of many, the ability to understand a country’s political risk, security threats, and other uncertainties is vital to an organization’s decision-making process.. Before you invest, you need to know the on-the-ground truth about a country, not just what can be uncovered from a few clicks of an Internet search. 

At SMI, our country threat assessments can provide your organization with the information you need regarding an unstable political environment, economic and industrial espionage concerns, corruption and scam warnings, crime statistics, security studies and scenario forecasting.  Allow us to help you minimize your risk to foreign market entry.


Maritime Security Anti-Piracy Operations

Maritime Security and Anti-Piracy Operations

“70% of the world is covered by water, 80% of all people live near water, 90% of all trade travels by water.” Thus begins a 2012 commercial produced by the United States Navy, demonstrating how central our waterways remain in a modern world. Here at SMI, we recognize that being a truly global security provider means making Maritime Security and Anti-Piracy Operations a central feature of any defense apparatus. That is why we offer an entire suite of boutique maritime security services, each tailored to your precise needs.

All SMI onboard agents are former British military with specialized training in Indian Ocean piracy. The techniques our operators utilize are uniquely designed to minimize the risks exposed to crew, while maximizing the impact with which agents may respond to threats. In addition to onsite enforcement, SMI can provide personalized Target Analyses of both ports and vessels, as well as coordinated Emergency Plans written specifically to address gaps in maritime security and highlight local strengths.

Our maritime security services include:

  • Threat and Vulnerability Assessments of:

- Ports
- Cargo Vessels
- Personal Yachts
- Waterfront Properties

  • Anti-Piracy Agents:

-  Trained Agents- International
Waters Escorts
- EOD Divers
- Crisis Intervention Specialists

  • Analytics and Intelligence:

- Investigative Research Team
- Emergency Planning Specialists
- Crisis Simulation
- 24 Hour Emergency Monitoring

Security Management International’s Critical Infrastructure Protection Division has the capabilities and resources available to rapidly respond to your organizations requirements for comprehensive threat and vulnerability assessments and emergency response planning. 

Assessing Vulnerabilities to Terrorist Threats at Maritime Facilities

Today’s Martime Threat

Al-Qaeda terrorist planning materials, containing maps of US cities, diagrams of nuclear power plants, and information on dams, utilities and transportation systems, as well as detailed instructions for making chemical weapons, were found in caves and safe houses in Afghanistan. Additionally, the uncovered Declaration of Jihad Against the Country’s Tyrants (or as it is better known as “The Al-Qaeda Terrorist Manual”) boldly states, “The main mission for which the Military Organization (Al-Qaeda) is responsible is…Blasting and destroying the places of amusement, immorality, and sin.”

Municipal and state governments are currently focused on securing maritime transportation resources and other elements of the national infrastructure against acts of terrorism. Security Management International (SMI) is experienced in delivering such services. Our approach draws on years of experience and the application of an offensive methodology carried out by persons with special operations and intelligence backgrounds. The process, designed as a sabotage tool, quickly identifies where maritime (or other) infrastructure defenses must be shored up and provides a road map for doing so.

Security Management International, LLC (SMI), a security-consulting firm based in the Washington DC area, are experts in providing maritime target analysis and vulnerability assessment (TAVA) services. With a team of individuals who have served at the highest levels of the US infrastructure protection establishment, our people are accustomed to performing effective vulnerability assessments that offer necessary recommendations, as well is preparing emergency response plans that ensure operational sustainability while preserving human safety.

The SMI team has performed maritime vulnerability assessments across the globe, conducted security surveys of critical infrastructure prior to U.S. Presidential visits, and were responsible for the creation of the CARVER threat assessment methodology, as well as the Defense Against Terrorism (DAT) Survey. With over 100 years of combined security experience, our people have enjoyed long careers in international law enforcement, diplomatic service, and military special operations.

Simply stated, SMI is a not a body shop for would-be “security consultants” who have never actually experienced the terrorist threat up close. Rather, we are a small team of counterterrorism experts who have served the United States Government, in over 100 countries, and have been responsible for interdicting/investigating terrorist attacks for the past 30 years.

SMI utilizes a combination of risk management processes to best determine which critical assets are most vulnerable to attack and how best to divert security resources to protect those assets. The following chart demonstrates our approach:

OUR SOLUTIONS to Securing on the High Seas

In order to provide the highest level of service to our clients, Security Management International’s comprehensive approach to security is first to conduct a threat analysis followed by a vulnerability assessment of the maritime asset. Once a thorough assessment of each seaport has been completed, and the material risks and threats have been identified, we then determine the best approach to eliminating, thwarting or offsetting the vulnerabilities, and recommend appropriate security systems, protocols and countermeasures to be implemented.

Our solutions take into account all applicable cultural, financial, operational, and technical limitations. We will then provide executive summaries, detailed analysis and reports, formal recommendations, implementation plans, and cost estimates. We believe that security, to be most effective, must not only prevent potential vulnerabilities, but also discourage and defeat would-be aggressors, whether they are unauthorized insiders or disgruntled employees, known competitors or opponents, unknown outsiders, criminals, malicious vandals, terrorists, political activists or others.

Over the past three decades, members of our planning team have been major contributors and/or principle authors of emergency response plan documents for commercial complexes, maritime facilities, and Critical Infrastructures and Key Resources (CI/KR). As part of our services, the SMI consultants who will review the existing plans are recognized experts in the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPS Code). The ISPS represents the International Maritime Organization’s Maritime Safety Committee and its Maritime Security Working Group on the review of measures and procedures to prevent acts of terrorism, which threaten the security of passengers and crew and the safety of ships. Following ISPS guidelines, SMI’s threat and vulnerability assessments examine the following core competences:

  1. The gathering and assessment of information with respect to security threats
  2. Required maintenance of communication protocols
  3. Prevention of unauthorized access to ships, port facilities, and their restricted areas
  4. Preventing the introduction of unauthorized weapons, incendiary devices, and explosives to ships and port facilities
  5. Provide a means of raising the alarm in reaction to security threats and/or incidents
  6. Required, three stage, ship and port facility security plans based upon security assessments
  7. Required training, drills, and exercises to ensure familiarity with security plans and procedure

At SMI, we take security seriously and pledge that assisting our clients is our number one mission. As such, we stand ready to assist organizations with their maritime critical infrastructure and waterways needs.

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Event Planning and Security

Event Security and Planning

It is an unfortunate truth that any public gathering or event has become a target for political dissidents or radical terrorists. Yet securing such gatherings is a highly complicated task requiring the integration of hundreds of moving parts. It is for this reason that Security Management International strictly employs professionals with decades of experience in performing Event Planning and Security for the Secret Service, urban police departments, the CIA, FBI and Armed Forces. No matter the country, venue or principle, SMI is committed to providing clients with the highest quality security planning, logistics and management of large attendance events.

Some of the services SMI offers include:

  • Supplemental security officers
  • Metal detectors
  • Surveillance equipment
  • Trained bomb technicians
  • Mobile command posts and communications centers
  • Perimeter access controls
  • Coordination with local law enforcement
  • Route planning
  • Executive protection for high-risk principles
  • Armored vehicle transportation
  • Private jet coordination
  • Customs expedition in select countries

School Security

SMI School Security

It is a sad fact, but schools are becoming soft targets for active shooter events and gang violence. Students are more vulnerable to external threats than ever before. For this reason, SMI has partnered with some of the most highly respected law enforcement experts on the subject. Our consultants – who have been recognized as “Gang Officers of the Year” - can provide your school with threat and vulnerability assessments, help identify/decode gang “tagging” (graffiti) symbols, train your staff to recognize gang violence precursors, and establish emergency response protocols should an incident occur.  School security is too important not to be taken seriously. 

SMI also offers training courses for retail and terrorism threats. Click to find out more about our training courses including: Emergency Planning, Crisis Response, Threat Detection & Terrorism Awareness, Managing the Threat of Explosive Devices, and Combating Terrorist Explosive Attacks.

In addition, SMI provides Security Consulting, Security Management, and Intellectual Property Protection for executives, business owners, and Fortune 500 companies.


Emergency Response Planning

SMI Emergency Response Planning

At SMI, we believe that failure to prepare equates to preparing to fail.  As part of our core areas of expertise, SMI will review and re-write your organization’s existing Emergency Response Plan (ERP) and incorporate new components as may be needed and update the entire document to reflect current national standards.  This up-dating procedure will address the new methodologies for developing preparedness and response capabilities as outlined in the newly revised National Response Plan (NRP), the National Incident Management System (NIMS) and the National Preparedness Guidelines (NPG).

At a minimum, SMI strongly believes that any emergency operations plan should:

  • List coordinated agencies;
  • Identify responsibilities for agencies, teams, and employees;
  • Comply with government regulations;
  • Ensure proper communication and continuity between intergovernmental and interagency response teams;
  • Describe local population notification procedures; 
  • Identify containment procedures (fire, chemical, biological, radioactive, flood, etc.); and
  • Describe response actions and back-up measures.

Additionally, the plans should establish links to government agencies to facilitate interagency and intergovernmental planning, training, exercising, coordination, and information exchange. 

SMI is proud to have nationally recognized subject matter expert Pablo Gonzalez as our Director of Crisis Management and Emergency Preparedness.

Mr. Gonzalez and his team will assist in developing compliance and concurrence with all of the latest national planning guidelines, concepts and doctrines such as:

  • NIMS- National Incident Management System
  • ICS- Incident Command System
  • SNS- Strategic National Stockpile
  • NRF- National Response Framework
  • JOC- Joint Operations Centers
  • ESF- Emergency Support Functions
  • NPS- National Planning Scenarios
  • UTL- Universal Task List

SMI also offers training courses for government, military, and business professionals. Click to find out more about our training courses including: Emergency Planning, Emergency Plan Writing, Crisis Response, Threat Detection & Terrorism Awareness, Managing the Threat of Explosive Devices, and Combating Terrorist Explosive Attacks.

In addition, SMI provides Security Consulting, Security Management, and Intellectual Property Protection for executives, business owners, and Fortune 500 companies.


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