This Week's Herman Trend Alert

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  The Herman Trend Alert

September 10, 2003

Terrorism Threat Stimulates Industry Growth

The horrific events of September 11, 2000, a short two years ago, shocked America and the world. Public and private organizations raced to upgrade security in a new environment of paranoia. At least, the taste of fear that another act of terrorism could happen at any time was new to America. This feeling of constant uncertainty is a way of life in too many places around the world, the most notable being the well-publicized situation in Israel.

Citizens of the United States assumed that their country was safe from senseless terrorist attacks. Such behavior is counter to the cultural beliefs in America. The impact of globalization hit hard, with the stunning realization that as the world became smaller, radicals using terrorism as a weapon could too easily penetrate porous borders. The events of two years ago changed the attitude and sense of we-are-safe-here forever. Now, people in practically every country of the world are a little more wary, especially in places like Indonesia and a variety of African countries that had been more concerned with internal strife than external incursion.

In response, security has been upgraded substantially in the United States and in other nations. Government buildings are more closely guarded; concrete barriers blockade entrances. Airports have become bastions of security for domestic and international travelers. Border patrols have taken on new meaning and everyone is suspect as national law enforcement agencies seek to control who comes into their countries with the potential for evil.

As government agencies and corporations seek ways to become impenetrable, the private sector security industries have grown dramatically. There is a new market for concrete barriers. Manufacturers of surveillance equipment and machines that can screen luggage, briefcases, and humans are as busy as they can be. New technology provides methods for identifying people by facial characteristics or iris identification (see previous Herman Trend Alert at http://www.herman.net/alert/archive_3-31-99.html). Communications systems, computer network upgrades, and other developments are fueling an emerging industry that will enjoy a healthy life for many years to come.

Security will become an increasingly important domestic and export industry in many countries.


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