• Instructor ICY

Are you volunteering to be a victim ?

Updated: Feb 14

In the last few weeks, I've witnessed cases where men and women have committed errs, that tagged them as prospective victims. Ready to be chosen by an adversary for their loot. What amazed me was the level of education each had accomplished in their respective domains and yet they failed to use their IQ (which is a part of Personal Security Quotient - #PSQ) to foresee how their acts could put them and others around them in deep trouble or lack of action has made them a victim. When I use the word volunteer, I'd like you to know that you can do so unconsciously as well. By doing things that the bad guys want you to do.

Case 1

I'll share the latest first. I saw a post by an individual from a very senior rank in their company. The post was a personal invite to meet a VIP. The invite had details of the date, time, venue of the meet. It had names of the invitee and other critical VIP's who would be present there. This post was a screenshot of an email sent to this individual on his personal mail id and looking at the profile of the attendees, I would say one should have kept silent till the event was over. Or at best not share the screenshot with such critical details on social media as a SHOWOFF.

How is this any dangerous?

Assuming I'm the adversary, I'll have my guys scanning social media networks for OSINT. And now that I have been served with such OSINT on a platter, I'd like to pick this gentleman's family as my guest and have him do what I want him to do. I don't need him to carry any weapons into the party. Even if I can get him to toss a butter knife or an equivalent with enough force towards the VIP, and cause him a little bleeding, I've created a ripple. Big enough to end the party before it could begin. And a media show that will take a different shape.

What I shared is an amateur plan. A seasoned criminal/terrorist can and will do much more. If I were the chief of security for the VIP attending this event, I'd have a watch on the Social Media posts of all scheduled to attend the event and scan for OSINT with event details. Any leak of critical info by one, and I'd revoke his invite and change the venue. If you think this is overreacting, well, you haven't heard of the 'Butterfly Effect'. To understand this phenomenon and its massive implications, watch this - The Butterfly Effect. One Small Err and its all OVER !

Case 2

I've been approached by over a dozen women in the last few weeks, to consult them tackle harassment at work and other places. There was this one case where my client was being abused for the past few months. Stalked at work and outside work. The adversary, as I realized was a bit smart and apart from knowing my client was fearful as she was living alone, he had all the info about her. So when my client approached me seeking how she can raise a case against him, my first question was - 'Why should I believe you ?'

Initially, she got offended but when I explained my purpose of such a question she was more than willing to cooperate. I realized that my client was suffering from a small inferiority complex as she came from a smaller town. And due to this, there was a need for her to show off (nothing wrong with that, we all do) to a particular set of people in her network that she was up-to-date with fashion and social life. In order to achieve her pseudo status, she shared quite a bit about her preferences and choice of places on social media in the form of reviews, selfies, and check-ins.

This was, just like the earlier case - OSINT on the platter. He knew when to spot her at what place. So we used the same tactics (that was till now going against her) to collect evidence. I gave her a small crash course in evidence collection. In less than a week she had enough to implicate this guy under PoSH Act. And the company that didn't take her seriously had to comply as now she had gathered enough evidence of workplace harassment and out of work harassment.

My Point

It is important we understand the subject of security. We use this word a hundred times a day but yet have little or no clue of what it really means and can effect us. The first one, it is a sheer case of ignorance of how bad it can get to have leaked such critical info.

To Out-Think the adversary is your responsibility. That is what is called Personal Security Quotient (#PSQ). To Out-Perform the adversary, is the job of the law enforcement agencies. This needs force and they are trained for it.

In the second case, it is a lack of life skills and empowerment. Something that I have drilled into the #PSQ program so deep that it not just uplifts the warrior in women but also gives them complete control over their being and role in society.

I hope this small piece has stressed enough on the need of making an earnest attempt to learning about your personal security and the small things you do that can put you at high risk and make you a Volunteer to become a Victim.

Feel free to revert for queries regarding your personal security or to invite us for a talk/seminar/workshop on Personal Security Quotient for women.

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