RMS Terrorism Risk Model Includes More International Cities

August 10, 2010

Newark, Calif.-based Risk Management Solutions has enhanced its terrorism risk model, adding in more details for international cities and higher resolution hazard information and refinements to human exposure and building vulnerability based on data from recent attacks.

The International Probabilistic Terrorism Model (PTM) now covers London, Rome, Milan, Toronto, Montreal, Ankara, Istanbul, Dublin, and Copenhagen. “The selection of cities is driven by a combination of terrorist activity levels and the concentration of high-value insured properties, such as skyscrapers, stadiums, and Fortune 100 companies, which dictates market interest,” explained Maria Lomelo, director of emerging risk solutions at RMS.

RMS’ new methodology for modeling the rate of terrorist plot interdiction is based on terrorist cell size and the complexity of planned attacks, and uses both social network analysis and counterterrorism method data. The model now accounts for the network structure of terrorist supporters, advocates, and active terrorists, and how authorities track and intercept attacks. Understanding the interdiction process is essential to modeling the probability of successful attacks, the company said.

“Over the past year we have seen high levels of terrorist activity, with most plots having been foiled. The more ambitious the terrorists’ plan, the more operatives it is likely to include – therefore making the plot more susceptible to interdiction,” said Dr. Gordon Woo, catastrophist at RMS. “The terrorism risk in the cities covered by the new model drives the need for a terrorism risk solution in those regions.”

Revisions have also been made to the vulnerability and hazard modules, which use new information from recent attacks and academic studies to improve understanding of the vulnerability of human exposure, property, and business interruption from various attack modes.

In addition to the latest version of the International Probabilistic Terrorism Model, enhancements to the terrorism model include: expansion of the terrorism target list, which now covers more than 9,000 potential targets in 20 key cities in North America, Europe, and Asia; updates to the stochastic event sets; hazard footprints; and refinements to vulnerability curves for select attack modes and coverages.

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