Staying safe in 2016

So is this a brave new world or just an older and more dangerous one?

Well, depending on what your angle is and where you live, .

Take, for example, the risks of reading this article online. Most of us carry a smartphone or a tablet that accesses Wi-Fi at home, work and in public spaces. Usually we don’t care which network we use when we are out and about – all we want is to have Internet access for our devices so we can keep in touch with friends and family, access social media and see the score of the game.

The problem is that if you are accessing a public hotspot, everything you do on your phone can easily be stolen which includes social media logins, text messages and even credit card information if you’re in the process of buying something. Additionally, the apps on your phone may automatically transmit data in the background as well, information you don’t even know about.

So in terms of the ‘risk’ and ‘security’ issue, expect 2016 to see an increase in hacking and data theft and a corresponding increase in the use of VPN services.

And what about the weather? Yes, the simple matter of weather (normally a mundane topic for useless conversation) is also making this planet a riskier place to be.

El Niño is delivering its strongest punch ever with super storms fuelled by the warming of the central and eastern regions of the Pacific Ocean creating havoc with extremes of drought in some countries and torrential rain in others. Expect this to be amplified by the influence of global warming that is changing all of the norms of our weather. Certainly the stakes are higher – temperatures are hotter, ice sheets are melting which affects the oceans that shape our climates increases the risks and security of life, property and food.

Of course media headlines in 2016 are predicted to all too frequently report and focus on the very real security threats in an ever changing world. At battleface we recognise that safety is a commodity of value – and more so in regions where stability is non-existent or fluid, at best.

We also recognise that the ‘risks’ don’t deter the human spirit to travel to or experience, volunteer or work in conflict zones or areas under the threat of violence. That’s why we’ve built our network and reputation on providing on the ground support where others won’t and servicing the needs of travellers, reporters, entrepreneurs and countless others who see their goals and missions connected to the people and places that others only read about.

Wherever you are and wherever you’ll be in 2016 expect a situation that you’ve never encountered before. It could be the data hack while you’re touring in Spain, it could be the fog event in Cairo that is unprecedented and ruins your connections, or it could be that you’re in need of medical evacuation in Gabon. Whatever that situation is you’re going to a whole lot of help to get safe and get home – and that’s just what we love doing.

And for closure I’ll refer back to that TV cop show ‘Hill Street Blues’ that ran from ’81 to ’87, when in the morning brief to all police at the station, Sgt. Phil always ends with his catchphrase “Let’s be careful out there.”

Well Sgt. Phil, we couldn’t agree more and can’t say it any better.