Pool Re publishes Terrorism Threat Update: February 2021
Authored by Pool Re
There were no significant terrorist attacks in the UK or Europe in February.
Despite a recent decline in terrorist activity and the reduction of the UK threat level to ‘SUBSTANTIAL’ from ‘SEVERE’, the threat of a terrorist attack occurring remains likely.
February witnessed the UK’s youngest terrorist conviction and the deployment of increasingly sophisticated cyber and drone capabilities, evidenced by recent attacks in the US and Saudi Arabia. Both attacks showcased the growing intent and capability of violent groups to weaponise and utilise novel technologies to execute their attacks. New methodologies were also the subject of recent warnings from Ben Wallace, the UK Defence Secretary, who warned of the growing threat of international chemical and biological attacks. On the domestic front, following the release of the government roadmap on the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, opportunities for mass casualty attacks will increase and planned attacks, deferred due to the pandemic, may now materialise. Further afield, an attack in the Democratic Republic of the Congo on a United Nations convoy which killed the Italian Ambassador to the DRC, was condemned as a ‘terrorist attack’ by the DRC president Felix Tshisekedi.
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Pool Re’s purpose is to enable the UK insurance market to offer terrorism cover to any commercial property that requires it. Central to this is the integration of Pool Re’s cover with the underlying property policy which ensures that there is no gap in the cover provided.
Pool Re was designed to insulate the taxpayer from potential financial losses arising from acts of terrorism. It has achieved this effectively, to date paying £635m in respect of 13 claims arising from certified terrorism events in the UK since our establishment. It has never called on the Government’s guarantee.
By providing foundational stability at a reinsurance level, Pool Re has created an environment for the commercial market to re-establish itself, following the market failure in 1992. This stability creates and sustains access, liquidity and confidence to generate the conditions for the private market to gradually write a growing portion of terrorism risk.
Helping UK businesses build resilience against terrorism risk is a priority for Pool Re who have developed SOLUTIONS an in-house centre of excellence created to support Members and policyholders better understand risk awareness, modelling, and management. They have also invested in a range of initiatives with Government security and intelligence agencies to provide tools such as an information sharing platform.
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