Kidnap: Inside the Ransom Business

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RUSI’s Centre for Financial Crime and Security Studies is delighted to welcome Dr Anja Shortland from King’s College London to discuss her new book, ‘Kidnap: Inside the Ransom Business’.

Millions of people work, live, and travel in high-risk countries; yet very few are kidnapped and, of those that are, almost all come home safely - how can this be? This new book – unique in its field – looks at the ransom business from all angles. Abducting someone may be relatively easy but obtaining a ransom is difficult: how much is the hostage worth; how do you negotiate a significant ransom; and how do you conclude the deal without being caught? Do ransoms rise if you maltreat or kill hostages?

Contrary to its media image, kidnap is not usually a violent, chaotic, and unpredictable crime. In fact, it is so well-ordered that it is insurable. Shortland analyses the powerful private governance system that takes control in transnational hostage situations to safely and cheaply retrieve kidnap victims.

This new book is based on extensive interviews with those who deal with kidnapping worldwide – special risk insurers, security consultants, victims’ employers and families, and professional negotiators on both sides and provides a masterful deconstruction and explanation of ‘the trickiest trade’.

Please do join us to hear Dr Shortland discuss her new book on its day of launch.


Continuing Professional Development

This event has been certified for CPD purposes by the CPD Certification Service.

To obtain a CPD Certificate of Attendance please register with RUSI at the end of the event attended, and a certificate will be dispatched within 28 days. If an attendee fails to register with RUSI then it will not be possible to issue a certificate.

For more information please contact Jack Haines,

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