Tour Security | What is it?


After 21 years in the security industry, specializing in concerts and major events, the touring aspect, along with many other security aspects is still largely misinterpreted, with many people, and, or companies offering services to clients, none-the-wiser to what is actually and factually required to ensure a tour, concert and it’s talent are adequately protected.


Security must enable business to operate, the same goes for a tour, to ensure that all key persons are involved in the planning from the very start, to be engaged in tour decisions and to enable smooth and transparent lines of communication.


The days of procuring the cheapest option, for the purpose of a box ticking exercise should be forgotten, if you are deploying a shirt filler, you need to ask yourself, do I really need security at all?


Does the person or company you are engaging ''factually'' offer what they are ''telling you'' they offer? And what due diligence have you carried out?


If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional, wait until you hire an amateur.

TOUR SECURITY & VENUE SECURITY COORDINATION


The protection of artists throughout a tour, including its crew, equipment, and other tangible and intangible assets (IT assets, wardrobe, physical and digital documents, vehicles etc.) requires Tour Security specialists.


Usually, concert Tour Security is split into two areas of interest; Tour Security (Personal Protection, Logistics, Tour Accreditation) and Venue Security Coordination (Advanced Security, Venue Accreditation & SAD's or Supplementary Access Devices, Venue Security Oversight, Security Audits/Surveys, Risk Assessments and Secure Logistics).


Not having both provisions can cause significant issues, for example, if a tour only has a Personal Protective Detail, maybe because it’s only one person, who is carrying out the Venue Security Coordination for you?


Both two areas operate as two separate operations, within one dedicated business unit, and requires seamless and streamlined communications, promptly, and on and around the clock basis, as outlined in previous articles, if you think sleep is at the forefront of the agenda, you need to be looking at other career options.


Tour Security, upon being split into two operations (Tour Security & Venue Security Coordination) should include personal protection for members of the band or artist, conducting threat assessments and the mitigation of determined risks based on priority, procurement and management of secure transportation, dedicated accreditation liaison(s), hotel, and other venue advances which will determine if a venue is appropriate for the artist(s), crew and tour personnel to stay in, perform at, or visit.


The list goes on.


Close collaboration with the Tour Management, by way of face-to-face meetings and daily written reporting is vital, as is an open-door policy for the Tour Security Director and all security focal points (SFP's).


Reverting back to previous articles, all persons within the operation must be computer literate to a high standard, advances in technology, especially since the CV-19 pandemic has meant companies have now integrated these into their standard operations, this includes video calling, realtime reporting via shared folders and more.


Respectful, non-intimidating Venue Security collaboration is paramount, all to often I have witnessed attempts at bullying, by way of opening communications with ''we are in-charge'', Venue Security Coordination must respectively scrutinize their Venue Security Strategy, Emergency Response Procedures, Security briefing content, Standard Operating Procedures and more.


Feedback on what needs to be changed of enhanced needs to be done promptly, with all stakeholders involved, including key venue management and emergency services. If you adopt the ''intimidation'' approach, this will not happen.


LOGISTICS


Often the forgotten or least scrutinized vital necessity.


How rigorous are the transportation providers vetted? too often companies, individuals, are prepared to spend vast amounts on protective security, but when it comes to secure transport, they often go with the cheapest, or the companies proclaiming to offer a limo service.


A limo service is not the same as secure transportation, neither is a hotel car service.


If any of you reading this are responsible for a companies corporate security strategy, managing Executive Protection, Journey Management and Technical Surveillance Countermeasure (TSCM) awareness for overseas travel, appropriate transport for employees during overseas travel is often at the top of the agenda, after appropriately secured accommodation.


In this part of the world (GCC) Road Traffic Accidents (RTA’s) are one of the most common causes of death. Most limo drivers are former Uber drivers, knowledge of the roads is paramount, but so are Advanced Driving Techniques and the utmost professionalism with clear command of English and the local language.


Another topic, for a later date.


The artist(s) and you, need to be where you need to be, without complications and added stress, when I say added stress, this can pile up when perhaps on a multi-leg world tour.


Secure logistics is about making sure time and money isn’t wasted between locations, therefore security work closely with the tour management, personal assistants, and marketing teams to prepare, organize and facilitate each day’s schedule ahead of time, we must focus on proactive planning, not reactive.


Advances conducted by the Venue Security Team, will ensure security are familiar with any environment the artist(s) attend, to ensure safe and timely movement.


CORONAVIRUS


The Coronavirus had a significant impact on the live music industry, touring came to a halt, as did live concerts in many countries, and in some cases that is still the case.


Many tours now require a dedicated CV-19 auditor, to manage the compliance of measures that a tour must have in place, prior to commencing, not only for peace of mind, my insurance purposes.


CV-19 safety protocols, training, and awareness must be given to all persons on tour, liaising with any CV-19 Venue Compliance Officer, monitoring compliance in all backstage areas, disinfection, social distancing, liaising with the emergency services, and abiding by local and national guidelines, and other information related to preventing the spread of infection, and in turn apply risk mitigation measures.


The issue is, from the information I have gathered from contacts, many of these roles have been scooped up by people who have no prior touring, or event experience, meaning that they are ill-equipped to understand the huge number of moving parts within a tour, rendering the position meaningless.


This highlights the importance, that you must not only carry out due-diligence on the persons and company you entrust to secure your tour, but also other touring staff such as this new role who has a critical role in mitigating the risk of a CV-19 outbreak, and exposing you to brand damage, liability cases and impacting your business (tour) continuity.


Ultimately we all have a responsibility.


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If you are visiting the region, and require a company whom are specialists in providing these services get in touch with me, and I shall see to the introductions for you.


Adam WG Green MSyl CSMP