6 Actions to Protect Yourself from an Active Shooter

The United States has 4.4% of the world’s population yet owns 42% of the world’s guns.

The recent Valentine’s Day shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida is not only a tragedy for the parents and siblings of the 17 killed. The mass shooting is also an insight into the prevalence of gun related violence in North America. According to the Gun Violence Archive, since New Year’s Day 2013 until Valentine’s Day 2918 there were 9 shootings in the United States every 10 days. In other words, 1624 people have been shot in the past 1870 days. 

The United States is only one of three countries ( the others being Guatemala and Mexico) that believes people have a right to own guns. With this right comes a downside: An American is 300 times more likely to die by gun homicide than a Japanese. More distressingly, according to research published by the University of California, Berkeley, American gun crime is more lethal than other countries worldwide.

6 Actions to Protect Yourself from an Active Shooter

  1. Get off the “X”. This means that you need to overcome your normalcy bias ( this cannot be happening thinking) and move away from a dangerous situation as it happens. Seek cover and concealment.
  2. Realise that when a shooting starts, people panic and the herd mentality kicks in.Dangerously, in an active shooter scenario, people either freeze ( a standing target) or run ( exposing their backs as a target). Know where to move to safety by pre-planning.
  3. Create a code word in your family that signals immediate danger. Practice using this word and emphasise that it will only be used in an emergency.
  4. If you have to run to your cover,run fast and straight. If the area is open, run in zigzags.
  5. If you go to a room, lock it and barricade the door and windows. Switch off the lights and your mobile phone.
  6. Be prepared to find or make a weapon. Communicate with others and be prepared to attack. Numbers will always prevail.


Join us and other concerned persons to learn how to survive an active shooter. Our H.E.A.T. courses combine theory  with practice and you will learn practical survival skills.


H.E.A.T. tip: Do not view the unfolding events through your mobile phone. Rather, ensure that you are able to see what is going on around you and plan an escape route.

6 Steps to Surviving in a Desert

Africa is known for its 3 large deserts but 22 cover the continent.

Given the number of deserts in Africa, it is likely that many corporate travellers will be exposed to this harsh environment during their travels on the continent. With approximately 25% of the land mass covered by desert, it is important to know how to survive in such an environment.

Not all deserts are seas of rolling sand dunes. Each has its own unique features and distinct weather patterns. But, each of them pose similar risks to corporate travellers: life expectancy is linked to the amount of water you can drink; you need to minimise water loss from the body; shelter from the sun is vital; and low night time temperatures can cause hypothermia.

6 steps to surviving in a desert

  1. Soak up sweat by wearing a bandana around your neck and  sanitary pads on your feet.
  2. Minimise evaporation by covering your body with long trousers, long sleeved shirts and a hat. Breathe through your nose rather than your mouth.
  3. Look after your feet by tying strups of cloth around the tops of your boot to prevent sand from getting inside.
  4. Maximise your eye protection by using sun glasses. Use charcoal to blacken the skin under your eyes to reduce glare into your eyes.
  5. Extract water from plants with their roots near the surface, such as saxaul or cactus. Extract water by mashing or squeezing the pulp.
  6. If there are no suitable materials to build a shelter, make one below the ground. Create a second layer above the first to increase the cooling effect.

Learn how to survive in any hostile environment and attend one of our H.E.A.T. courses.



H.E.A.T. tip: To make a rehydration solution, mix half a teaspoon of salt with 2 tablespoons of sugar in 1 litre of water.

6 Steps to Improve your Security Online

33% of all travel insurance claims are for losses caused by physical pickpocketing. Yet, electronic pickpocketing is becoming more common.

When travelling both in and outside of your home country, you need to be aware of the security risks your mobile electronic devices face. The threat is no longer from individuals or gangs who have to interact with you physically. Now, your personal and critical information can be stolen remotely.

On our H.E.A.T. courses we teach corporate travellers how to operate and survive with confidence in any hostile environment. Cyberspace is just another environment and you need to take precautions. The key principle to understand is that your privacy is directly connected to your security. Improve one and you will enhance the other.


6 steps to improve your security online

  1. Keep copies of your health insurance, credit cards, driver’s license and passport on an encrypted USB drive. Use the secure IronKey USB drive to store all your documents. The unit is small, has military grade encryption and will self- destruct after a number of false attempts.
  2. Sanitise your mobile devices. Download photographs, images and personal details to your computer or cloud accounts. If you are detained or kidnapped, such images could prompt your captors to demand more.
  3. Do not make online purchases with your credit card on your phone. Apart from showing off your card in public and drawing attention to yourself, your handset could be compromised. If so, your credit card could be copied as you prepare for the transaction
  4. Password protect your mobile phone. Also, know how to use either the ” Find my iPhone” or the ” Android Device Manager” if your phone is stolen.
  5. Prevent spyware from collecting and stealing your sensitive proprietary information. Install anti- spyware products such as Spybot Search and Destroy, Malwarebytes and Lavasoft’s Ad-Aware.
  6. When you go online, use a secure browser. If making financial transactions, make sure that the web address has a secure socket layer ( eg: https://).This means that all data that is sent and received is encrypted.

Learn more about how to secure your information and maintain your privacy when travelling. Attend one of our H.E.A.T. courses and really understand what to do to be secure online.

H.E.A.T. tip: Whether you are visiting social media platforms or just browsing, protect your identity and secure your privacy by using a virtual private network ( VPN) like IPVanish, TunnelBear or NordVPN.

When travelling both in and outside of your home country, you need to be aware of the security risks your mobile electronic devices face. The threat is no longer from individuals or gangs who have to interact with you physically. Now, your personal and critical information can be stolen remotely.



On our H.E.A.T. courses we teach corporate travellers how to operate and survive with confidence in any hostile environment. Cyberspace is just another environment and you need to take precautions. The key principle to understand is that your privacy is directly connected to your security. Improve one and you will enhance the other.



6 Steps to Protect your Cash

The world’s economy is interconnected. When America sneezes, currencies wobble.

Given that economies are connected and more exposed than in the past 200 years, people are concerned about how to survive an economic crash. Rising interest rates, growing inflation, policy change and a housing price correction are all key risks. 

But, there are other risks which include  government intervention, collapse of the power grid, home invasion, a run on the banks and the collapse of a currency. How prepared would you be if you cannot access your cash?

6 steps to protect your cash

  1. Maintain at least one month’s salary in cash as a reserve.
  2. Store this cash in a diversion safe in your house. You can create your own by cutting the bottom off a tin of food, washing out the tin and adding a plastic cover. Place cash in the tin and hide it amongst other items in a storage cupboard.
  3. Rent a self storage unit. This will provide you with extra space to store useful kit as well as certain valuables for bartering.
  4. Install a safe at home but cover it with a cardboard box marked ” books” or ” utensils”. Make sure that the safe is bolted to the floor or wall and has an independent power supply.
  5. Invest in small ingots of gold, platinum or silver. These metals will always go up in value during a crisis and provide an excellent hedge against inflation. Also, like jewellery, these precious metals can be easily concealed and transported.
  6. Keep money in offshore banks that you can access. Remember, we had access to money long before the internet and digital currencies.

However, during a crisis, cash will be the oil to drive a local economy until the bartering of goods takes over.

H.E.A.T. tip: Always carry a high denomination note (€500 or $100) on your purse. You can use it to motivate people to help you in a tricky situation.

 Join one of our H.E A.T. courses to learn how to  protect your wealth and keep your cash.

6 Techniques for Improving your Functional Strength

When you enter a hostile environment you need to be fit to survive. Read on to learn how.

For many of us, fitness is a concept that evokes images of running on a treadmill, grunting under heavy weights or chatting over a latte in the gym cafe. Unfortunately, none of these activities will give you the functional fitness you need to train for life, not events.

Simply put, functional fitness is achieved by a combination of balance and coordination with improved strength and range of motion.


6 techniques for improving your functional strength


  1. Recognise the phases you must go through to become fit: excitement and high motivation; self-doubt; conquering self- doubt; growing confidence; new challenges.The most psychologically beneficial phase is conquering your self- doubt.


  1. Replace jogging with high intensity sprints. This interval training might include 30 second sprints followed by 2 minutes of slow walking. Do this for 20 minutes to start and increase your time and the number of repeat sprints.


  1. Lift heavy weights. Do not do so at the gym with a weight machine. These weight machines do not exercise the little stabilisation muscles which will enable you to climb fences, search rubble or carry goods in a hostile environment.


  1. Challenge your balance on a stable environment, rather than a BOSU ball or other such equipment. By conducting exercises on stable ground, you will be able to handle heavier weights at a greater intensity. You will get stronger,  quicker.


  1. Build your power by carrying out quick and explosive movements. Use plyometrics to practice explosive push ups, squat jumps and Olympic lifts.


  1. Increase your planes and range of motion.Add rotational exercises to keep your back healthy and develop a powerful core.

H.E.A.T.tip: Spend time on your feet carrying a heavy rucksack. Simply increase the weight of the pack and the distance you will cover each week. Soon, you will look and behave like Superman.

Come on one of our H.E.A.T. courses and learn how to get fit fast and stay fit to survive any adverse scenario.

6 Tips to Prevent you Becoming Drunk

How to out think any drinker

A drinking culture exists in many countries, even those with strict prohibition in place. 

A drinking culture, by definition, means customs and practices involved with consuming alcohol. Whether we talk about the French, who drink to savour the flavour; the Phillipines, where an opened bottle must be finished; Australia where binge drinking is glorified; or Spain, where workers enjoy a beer with a brandy chaser for brunch, drinking is socially acceptable.

 Despite this acceptance, the consumption of alcohol can have negative effects on a person. Common effects include impaired judgement, distorted vision, memory loss and decreased coordination. As a non- drinker, you can take advantage of these short term effects on your drinking companions. But how do you drink with them, without getting drunk?

6 tips to prevent you becoming drunk

  1. Eat a quantity of fatty foods before drinking alcohol. Whether you eat bread and butter or ice cream, fatty foods will inhibit inebriation.
  2. Pay the barman to control the drinks: large quantities for the target; smaller quantities for yourself, but the same volume of mixer
  3. Lift the glass to your lips but only sip the drink
  4. Proactively refill the target’s glass once it becomes half full
  5. Mix a teaspoon of active dry yeast ( containing the ADH enzyme)  with plain yogurt and swallow. Ideally, one teaspoon per 350ml of drink before you start.
  6. Take 300mg of  Dihydromyricetin ( hovenia dulcis extract) and neutralise the effects of alcohol intoxication.


H.E.A.T. tip: Hold a glass of sparkling water, with ice and lemon, by your side. This suggests a self- confident drinker but you will always be sober.

Learn the art and practice of elicitation at one of our H.E.A.T. courses and outwit your competitors.


6 Ways to Survive Nuclear Fallout

The end of the Cold War in the late 1980s did not mean an end to hostilities. Today, Russia is overhauling its nuclear triad ( submarines, bombers and missiles) and has 7000 warheads. The United States us following suit and has 6800 warheads. North Korea might only have 15 warheads but it has a very shaky finger hovering over its nuclear button.

Over the past few years, the problem has not been the size of the world’s nuclear arsenal. The problem has been the easy access to the knowledge and technology required to build a missile. Imagine being a highly qualified expert in nuclear, biological and chemical warheads and working for  the Soviet regime. You are sacked in June 1991 without a pension. Or, imagine that you are the manager of a scrapyard in the  Ukraine and see Russian missile technology dumped in the yard. You are offered cash for this scrap.

 The North Koreans have exploited both scenarios to acquire working parts and the expertise to build a missile. The recent launch of a missile screened on North Korean television showed a missile powered by an outdated but reliable Soviet RD-250 engine.

6 ways to survive nuclear fallout.

  1. Understand that fallout refers to the radioactive particles that fall to earth after a nuclear explosion.
  2. Exposure to any type of fallout is hazardous to your health. So, you must ensure that you do not come into contact with any radioactive ash, dust or rain.
  3. Fallout emits the highest levels of radiation for the first six hours after the detonation. Outside of the immediate blast zone, fallout can take over 15 minutes to drop down onto the earth.
  4. Get inside a solid shelter and move to its centre.
  5. Remove all contaminated clothing and wash yourself down.
  6. You can eat and drink packaged food items or foodstuffs that were inside the building before the fallout arrived.

H.E.A.T. tip: North Korea’s Hwasong -15 intercontinental ballistic missile has a range of 13 000km. Buy a NBC suit.

Learn to handle the hazards of a nuclear blast by attending one of our courses.


6 Pieces of Kit to Reclaim your Privacy

For every eavesdropping bug, telephone tap and spy camera  sold, there are probably 30 people or more who suspect that they are under surveillance.

The Information Age has brought many benefits to humanity and has provided unique opportunities for making our lives more convenient and comfortable. Unfortunately, this convenience and comfort comes at a price. The expectation of our right to  everyday privacy has disappeared and the Electronic Invasion is impacting on our private lives and business affairs at an accelerating pace.

More and more corporate travellers are finding themselves the target of hostile surveillance by government agencies, organised crime and unscrupulous competitors. Hidden cameras monitor our daily activities in malls, banks and hotels. Business meetings are recorded, people covertly filmed and vehicles tracked to help burglars know when your home is empty.

Although many people think that surveillance devices only exist in James Bond and other fictional works, a brief internet trawl shows how easily one can acquire and learn to use such devices simply and quickly. 

6 pieces of kit to reclaim your privacy

  1. If you suspect that you are under surveillance, from a government agency or private firm, call in a professional TSCM ( aka ” sweep”) team to check your communication systems.
  2. Use a mobile phone jammer to prevent the inadvertent or deliberate misuse of your phone.
  3. Given the proliferation of mobile phones, consider deploying an audio jammer at your next staff meeting. By generating a random masking sound that disrupts microphones, your conversations will not be monitored or recorded.
  4. You can ruin any radio signal by emitting white noise in the room. Also known as a  “cocktail tape”, these random sound recordings disrupt the eavesdroppers ability to record your communications.
  5. Protect yourself from a home invasion by jamming the GPS/ GLONASS system in the gps device in your car. These jammers are illegal in the United States but not elsewhere( yet) and work in most cities where there is in an Uber driver.
  6. Locate covert cameras with a laser- based video camera finder. Once the pocket- sized laser detects a hidden video camera lens, the lens glows. This can be viewed and identified by a glow visible in the device’s viewfinder.

There are many new ways to spy on private citizens and companies. Learn about these threats and how to counter them on one of our H.E.A.T. courses.


If you find a transmitting device in your boardroom, replace it’s battery with a weaker one. Wait and see who comes into the boardroom to fix the ” problem”. 



6 Steps to Survive a Minefield

You discover that you are in the middle of a minefield: drive on or go back? The United Nations estimates that, with current technology, it will take over a 1000 years to clear all the landmines in the world.

Africa has the most amount of mines than any other continent. Angola and Egypt have more landmines than Iraq and Afghanistan combined and Zimbabwe is one of the densest minefields on Earth with an estimated 5500 mines per kilometre. 

Yet, since 1997, African giant pouched rats ( the size of a cat) have been trained to detect and help dismantle mines. These rats are indigenous to Morogoro in Tanzania and appear keen to learn. This is fortuitous because these rats can clear an area the size of a tennis court in 30 minutes. A human with all the latest demining  kit takes 4 days.

6 Steps to Survive a Minefield

  1. In a mined area, get local information about the markers used to identify minefields. Sometimes, the marker is a bunch of sticks or pile of rocks. In other areas, warning signs have been  posted on fences or rocks have been painted a distinctive colour.
  2. If you see a mine, do not touch.
  3. If a mine explodes and causes an injury, stop all movement.
  4. Do not rush to aid a blast victim. Grab your medical kit and exit your vehicle via the window, climbing over the front of the vehicle. Walk slowly and carefully along the vehicle tracks.
  5. Sit on your flak jacket and wear a helmet. Many injuries are sustained by hitting your head against the vehicle’s roof during a mine blast.
  6. Keep to the tarred roads even when Turing your vehicle around.

Learn how to recognise a minefield before it is too late. Join one of our courses and learn new life skills.

H.E.A.T. tip:

Landmines are often encased in waterproof plastic. Floods enable the mines to float and they move along with the flow. Get out of the water.


6 Steps to Survive Food Poisoning

Travelling to developing countries in Africa, where there is poor sanitation and low hygienic standards, poses a high risk of food poisoning. Use these tips to survive.

Food poisoning is caused by eating spoiled, contaminated or toxic foods or drinking impure water. The specific cause can be attributed to bacteria, parasites or viruses. Dangerous bacteria include Salmonella and E.coli.Toxoplasma is a  parasite that causes food poisoning and lives in cat litter boxes. But, the biggest threat is from the norovirus. This virus causes over 19 million cases of food poisoning each year.

The most common source of food poisoning is raw food, eggs, undercooked meat, unpasteurised milk and human- contaminated food. The symptoms range from vomiting and diarrhea to dehydration, blood in the stool and paresthesia.


6 steps to survive food poisoning

  1. Be patient. The illness could last a couple of hours to a days. 
  2. Take a stool sample for diagnostic purposes.
  3. Stay fully hydrated. Drink 2 litres a day and a glass of water every time you are sick.
  4. Take rehydration salts or make your own. Mix a teaspoon of bicarb of soda and salt; add to 4 tablespoons of sugar;  and add to a litre of water.
  5. Call a doctor if your fever goes higher than 38°C or you notice blood in your stool.
  6. Take a course of prescribed antibiotics, depending on the severity of the food poisoning.

If you experience an explosive bout of food poisoning, speed your recovery using the techniques taught during the Emergency Medicine module of our H.E.A.T. course.

H.E.A.T. tip: To prevent food poisoning and mitigate the risk of eating bad food or drinking dirty water, remember to boil it, peel it, use hand sanitiser or forget it.