In 2022, according to The Gun Violence Archive, an active shooter statistics database, 645 mass shootings occurred in the United States. This year, there have already been 50 more active shootings than this time last year with 477 active shootings as of the end of August 2023. The 2021 figure was 693, which was a 50% increase over 2020 and 2021 also saw an emerging trend of “roving active shooters,” in which shooters attacked multiple locations in one day or several days.
What has this got to with IoT?
According to McGowan, a leading writer of innovative insurance programs, “the factors influencing this [trend} may include an increased abundance of high-powered firearms and the popularisation of technology that allows people to report crimes or attacks in real-time”
McGowan also notes that “Workplace violence remains a genuine threat for companies looking to protect employees. With millions of Americans ending remote work and returning to the office, it is more important than ever for businesses to take adequate workplace violence precautions bolstered by safety and training programs.”
IoT in action
There is an emerging group of Internet of Things (IoT) solution providers, such as Gabriel, that recently graduated from the Lloyd’s of London Innovation Lab. Gabriel’s technology can stop critical incidents before they cost untold damages and lives by providing proactive sensing, automated smart response and real time situational awareness. They do this through patented technology that can detect weapons, acts of violence, gunshots and other activities that may be an early indication of an active assailant situation. In the event of a potential incident, Gabriel’s real time video, sounds and location information help eliminate false alarms and provide real time information to the first responders.
Gabriel has reported a decrease in the number of incidents since implementing their solution and has been successful in mitigating an active assailant situation at one of their customers. Also through Lloyd’s, they are developing insurance products to further incentivise customers to take up their technology and help realise their vision to reduce mass shooting casualties by 50% in 5 years. Insurance customers are already benefiting from discounts on their premium, and underwriters are beginning to actively encourage the adoption of this technology in order to reduce the risk of a catastrophic incident, which nobody wants to face.
So, there is a lot to do with IoT!
The real-time data collected by these devices can be used to prevent potential risks and improve decision-making processes during a high stress and rapidly changing situation. Using sensors, cameras, and other IoT devices provide a greater peace of mind and a safer environment for schools, businesses, houses of worship and other public places.
Hélène Stanway is a former Head of Innovation & Emerging Technology at AXA XL where she specialised in IoT initiatives. Hélène is now the Co-founder of the SENSE Consortium – a global forum driving the adoption of IoT in insurance. She consults for and speaks all over the world to companies and insurance audiences about navigating and embracing digital innovation.