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Engineers vital to government security body

Civil engineers will be 'absolutely essential' to the government's new 30-man national security forum, it was claimed this week.

Shrikant Sharma, Buro Happold's team leader for SMART software and security modelling business, said it was essential engineers were included on the forum.

The government's national security strategy, published last week, set out the threats facing the country, and broad strategies to deal with them.

Types of threat have expanded from terrorism to include climate change, disease, military attack, and flooding.

Part of the strategy is to establish a 30-man National Security Forum which will advise the government on policy.

"Building designers would be needed to test the structures.Analysts would be essential for modelling. Infrastructure engineers and masterplanners also need to be engaged," said Sharma.

"Most important are specialist analysts who can look at new technology and know how to exploit it."

MFD security director Chris Bowes agreed: "It would raise the profile of engineers, and help to make sensible decisions," he said.

The Cabinet Office would not confirm whether engineers would be included on the forum.

Security Threats
MI5 lists the current threat level to the UK as "severe", the second highest level, which means there is, "a high likelihood of future terrorist attacks and indicates a continuing high level of threat to the UK."
The government's strategy will be based on the four 'Ps' - Pursue [terrorists], Protect [infrastructure], Prepare [in the event of attack] and Prevent [people turning to terrorism].

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