Public urged to ‘stay alert’ during festive period as reports to counter-terror hotline more than double

8 November 2023, 06:52

Police said reports to a counter-terrorism hotline have more than doubled.
Police said reports to a counter-terrorism hotline have more than doubled. Picture: Alamy

By Jenny Medlicott

The number of reports to a police counter-terrorism hotline has more than doubled since Hamas launched its attack on Israel.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

The hotline received 1,350 reports between 7 October and 25 October, police said. That is more than double the number of reports compared to the same period last year.

Reports with useful information to investigators increased nearly four times to 200.

"Sadly, history tells us that events overseas can inspire or accelerate acts of violence much closer to home,” Deputy Assistant Commissioner Laurence Taylor said.

"We are working day and night with our partners to monitor the threat picture.

"We're acutely aware of the energising effect the conflict could have on those with extremist or terrorist intent.

"With that in mind, our counter-terrorism units across the country are reviewing their casework and checking that operational police activity is as effective as it can be to keep people safe.

"Critical to this work is the support of the public. As the increase in the number of reports to counter-terrorism policing in the last month shows, there is a real willingness from our communities to tell us about their concerns.

Read more: Israel 'wants to expel Palestinians from Gaza in replay of 1948 Nakba', ambassador to UK claims

Read more: 'Dead man walking': Israel surrounds Hamas leader in bunker and vows to eliminate him

The number of reports to a counter-terrorism hotline have more than doubled.
The number of reports to a counter-terrorism hotline have more than doubled. Picture: Alamy

"To those who have contacted police, thank you, your information can have a huge impact on what we do."

In the same period, the national counter-terrorism squad, which reviews material online, has also seen an increase in referrals from the public - rising to nearly 2,000 since October 7.

More than 350 of the referrals have required further investigation to establish if the incidents breach terrorism laws.

Mr Taylor also urged the public and businesses to stay vigilant to the risk of possible terrorist activity in the Christmas and New Year period.

“The coming months are filled with brilliant events and activities, where people will be coming together to enjoy the festive season,” he said.

"Sadly, we have seen before that terrorists can view these as attractive targets.

"Whilst we are working incredibly hard, with our partners, to make sure you can enjoy this time of year safely - our message is simple, stay alert and trust your instincts.

"Whether you're a business, an event organiser, a local authority or simply heading out with family and friends, if you see something that doesn't feel right, please report it.

"You won't be wasting our time and you could save lives."

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Jay Slater's father has urged people to come forward if they have any information on his son's disappearance

'Someone must know something': Jay Slater's father speaks out as search for missing son stretches into second week

Security guard who plotted to kidnap, rape and murder Holly Willoughby previously held other women against their will

Security guard who plotted to kidnap, rape and murder Holly Willoughby previously held other women against their will

Princess Diana's family home in Mayfair has gone on sale for the first time in decades

'A trophy home with royal connections': Mayfair townhouse where Diana met Dodi on sale for £11m

A shopping centre security guard from Essex, spent almost two years plotting to kidnap and kill Holly Willoughby.

'Obsessed' security guard spent almost two years 'plotting to kidnap, rape and murder' Holly Willoughby

Princess Anne has been injured by a horse

Princess Anne rushed to hospital with concussion after being kicked in the head by horse on country estate

Rishi Sunak has said he is not aware of any other candidates being investigated in the Conservative gambling scandal

Sunak says he's not being investigated in Tory betting scandal and is 'unaware of other candidates being looked at'

Lucy Letby tells retrial she never intended to harm babies in her care

Lucy Letby tells her retrial she never tried to harm any babies in her care

Frederick Allard has been jailed

Predator landlord jailed after demanding sexual favours from women in exchange for reduced rent

Jay Slater's family have shared an image of what is believed to be the last sighting of him

Spanish police issue update on missing Jay Slater after family share CCTV of mystery figure believed to be teen

A man has been rescued following a house explosion in Willington, County Durham

Explosion destroys house and leaves man seriously injured

Polish Politics And More (archives 2016-2022)

No Brexit renegotiation without free movement, warns Michel Barnier in fresh blow for Labour

Labour and the Tories are in a 'conspiracy of silence' about taxes, the IFS has warned

Next government will have to raise taxes, cut services or borrow more, IFS warn as they slam 'conspiracy of silence'

Jay Slater's family have shared an image of what is believed to be the last sighting of him

Missing Jay Slater's 'last sighting' in Tenerife: Family share CCTV of mystery figure believed to be teen

Exclusive
Wes Streeting has said Labour would simplify the gender transition process

Labour will 'simplify burdensome and bureaucratic' gender transition process, Wes Streeting says

Hosts of Izmir Wildlife Park

Mother in 'serious condition' after being viciously mauled by wolf pack during jog through safari park

x

Tory Party not sure if Craig Williams had insider knowledge on election or whether it was 'just a hunch', says minister