News

Actions

Orlando attack exposes security challenges of 'soft targets'

Security experts weigh in on vulnerabilities
Posted at 7:00 PM, Jun 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-14 15:38:17-04
CAPE CORAL, Fla.- The horrific terror attack in an Orlando nightclub is shedding light on the security vulnerabilities of so-called 'soft targets'.
 
Places where large crowds often gather with minimal to average security are considered soft targets, according to retired CIA agent and veteran Todd Wilcox, who is running for Marco Rubio's senate seat. 
 
"Soft targets are going to be a topic of discussion for all of us now," said Wilcox. "We're going to have to decide how much mitigation that's going to go into protecting these types of soft targets," he added.
 
Everyday businesses such as malls, grocery stores, and movie theaters are considered soft targets. 
 
While no direction has been given to businesses to increase security in the wake of the Orlando attack, Wilcox believes it may be a discussion lawmakers will have to have. 
 
"I think we're going to see a debate on what we do about this," said Wilcox.
 
Wilcox, who worked on the Joint Terrorism Task Force in Orlando as a CIA agent, told Fox 4 he believes Sunday's terror attack was the result of a failed foreign policy in the war on terror. He says with lone wolf attacks, businesses and community members will have to be more vigilant. 
 
"I think that every time we see an attack like this the public is going to become more vigilant and more aware of there surroundings that's the first step. If you see something, say something. Beyond that businesses are going to start thinking about ways in which they can protect their patrons," said Wilcox.
 
Protection will have to go beyond security camera's for some businesses, according to retired Jersey City Police Chief Walt Zalisko. 
 
"The most important is to have a physical presence of a guard or somebody there who can engage with these individuals, "said Kalisko, who now works as a security consultant. 
 
He says measures like metal detectors could help prevent a tragedy at soft target businesses.