FLORENCE, Italy – INTERPOL Secretary General Ronald K. Noble has said that rapidly detecting emerging threats requires having links to as many sources of information concerning threats and risks from as many countries as possible.
Speaking at the 2012 New York University (NYU) Leadership Conference in Florence on Friday, Secretary General Noble said: “The world through a security lens is one that changes by the minute and location. It can't be viewed through the lens of one country at one point in time."
Secretary General Noble said world events must not be seen from the sole perspective of one country when an institution's personnel could be anywhere on any given day.
The Head of INTERPOL focused on how some 40 NYU students and faculty members participating in an archeological project in Abydos, Egypt, were caught up in the disruptions caused by the events in Cairo in 2011 which led to the fall of the Mubarak presidency. After extraordinary leadership shown by NYU President John Sexton and his strong team of administrators and faculty, NYU staff and students were safely evacuated by air from Cairo with the assistance of NYU Abu Dhabi.
"NYU's Global Network University security philosophy strives each and every day to view security from the perspective of the country where NYU's students, faculty and personnel find themselves. NYU's video of its experience extracting students and faculty from Egypt is a must see," added the INTERPOL Chief.
Mr Noble said that institutions like INTERPOL and NYU need to prepare for any eventuality before members of their community travel internationally.
One important area of preparation, Mr Noble said, is to ensure that an institution has all the necessary contact information and personal data for members of its community so as to locate, identify and assist them as efficiently and rapidly as possible.
In this respect, Mr Noble cited as a positive development the creation of the NYU Traveler system, under the leadership of NYU Vice President for Public Safety Jules Martin, to provide NYU’s global community members with tools, services and information for their travel needs and to help keep them safer.
For INTERPOL's part, Mr Noble said INTERPOL had been re-designed a decade ago to face the challenges of today’s world, and that its global network allowed it to rapidly detect emerging threats and issue alerts to all its member countries in real time, 24/7.
(Mr Noble remains a fully tenured Professor of Law on leave of absence from New York University's School of Law while serving as INTERPOL Secretary General.)