CBRNE Terrorism Prevention Programme

CBRNE terrorism poses a clear threat to public health and safety, national security and economic and political stability on a global level. Accordingly, the prevention of such incidents is of the highest priority.

The threat of CBRNE terrorism is evolving and, with it, the risk of incidents intended to maximize the number of victims on a global scale. We know that terrorist groups are working hard to acquire CBRNE materials and the expertise to use them in their operations. 

At INTERPOL, our CBRNE Terrorism Prevention Programme specializes in the prevention of the different aspects of CBRNE.

About the programme

The INTERPOL methodology for countering the CBRNE terrorist threat consists of three main pillars:

  • Intelligence analysis for police services;
  • Programmes preventing the illegal dispersal of CBRNE materials;
  • Responding to and investigating CBRNE threats and malicious incidents.


We produce a monthly intelligence report covering all aspects of CBRNE terrorism, shared with our member countries. The reports provide information about incidents involving CBRNE materials, emerging threats, trends, trafficking routes and methods.

Our activities follow established practices and processes for intelligence research, analysis and production, in line with those used in the international community.  We continually strive to improve our reports, making them increasingly useful and relevant for the law enforcement community.


Given the gravity of a CBRNE terrorist attack and its consequences, prevention constitutes an essential element in both national and international strategies.

 In order to help prevent such attacks, we carry out the following activities:

  • Conduct threat assessments and analysis;
  • Work to increase the level of awareness of all national law enforcement agencies;
  • Deliver training sessions in order to increase law enforcement capabilities;
  • Provide prevention methodologies for use by member countries.      


INTERPOL launched  Operation Fail Safe – an initiative to counter nuclear smuggling – at the Nuclear Security Summit in 2012.

Operation Fail Safe supports the international law enforcement community in tracking the transnational movement of individuals involved in the illicit trafficking of radioactive or nuclear materials.

In the event of a terrorist attack, members of the programme can serve  as part of an Incident Response Team deployed by INTERPOL to assist a member country’s authorities in investigations.

Working in partnership

Due to the complex nature of CBRNE prevention and response, a multi-disciplinary approach is essential. Action needs to be coordinated at a national governmental level, ensuring close cooperation and information exchange between the various ministries, agencies and institutions involved: from those specialized in CBRNE materials regulation and security, to public health and law enforcement.

This inter-agency approach needs to be extended on an international level. At INTERPOL, we work in the global arena, connecting our worldwide network of member countries and maintaining close partnerships with other international agencies that are specialized in the CBRNE field.


One of INTERPOL’s key partners in its efforts to combat CBRNE Terrorism is the European Police Agency, EUROPOL. 

INTERPOL’s  CBRNE Terrorism Prevention Programme, located at its General Secretariat in Lyon, works in close collaboration with the EUROPOL CBRN Unit, located in The Hague, on all CBRN issues pertaining to the European Union.


INTERPOL is an observing international organization at the G8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction  which is an initiative by 26 countries to prevent terrorists from acquiring or developing weapons of mass destruction.

INTERPOL also supports the EU  CBRN Centres of Excellence Initiative  as well as the implementation of  UN Security Council Resolution 1540.

United Nations

Since its initiation in late 2010, INTERPOL’s CBRNE Terrorism Prevention Programme has been working closely with both the 1540 Committee and the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs in order to actively support the implementation of the Resolution’s guidelines.

UNSC Resolution 1540 was conceived as the legal cornerstone of the international mechanism established to prevent non-state actors and terrorists from accessing CBRNE materials in order to use them in perpetrating their malicious acts. INTERPOL’s support for this goal is highly focused on the implementation of real and pragmatic tools across law enforcement agencies around the world. 

Coordination between activities led by INTERPOL’s CBRNE Programme and those of the 1540 Committee is achieved through bilateral communication, but also larger international frameworks.

Useful Links


Project Geiger Report Form for National Central Bureaus

Authorized users can report a nuclear or radiological incident or event, such as a theft, loss, detection or seizure in two ways:

  • Via the  online form. This will be sent directly to the INTERPOL General Secretariat.
  • Via the  offline form. This can be downloaded and emailed to other agencies and organizations as necessary, as well as the INTERPOL General Secretariat. 

All reports must be either copied to or sent by the National Central Bureau.