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One of the most important factors that has arisen since 9/11 and more recent attacks, such as Madrid, is the fact that due to living in an interdependent, highly connected and technology dependent, but socially and politically open society, we are more vulnerable to a terrorist attack. Countering such threats is a task that requires action not only by government, the police and security services but also by the regulators of critical industries and individual companies.

There has been in recent times an explosion of continuity and emergency planning protocols being enthusiastically embarked upon by public and private organisations alike. The UK Civil Contingencies Bill, when passed, will further develop the importance of planning and managing emergency preparation and responses. Even though traditionally, emergency planning and business continuity management was considered as two separate disciplines, trends suggest that the future may allow us to envisage greater co-operation and collaboration with those involved in planning for, and responding to, emergencies. This conference promotes a greater co-ordinated approach between the public and private sectors in issues of business continuity, emergency planning, disaster recovery, crises management and information technology security. This allows for a unique discussion on the effectiveness of counter-terrorist contingency plans and disaster management within both the public and private sectors and will promote suggestions for greater co-ordination in the future.

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