Many security officials are familiar with the Sam Hyde hoax, in which the sketch comedian Sam Hyde is implicated in major active shooting events. The hoax began in 2015 and continues to present day, disrupting law enforcement and media efforts during active shooting situations, to include falsely identifying the shooter in the Nashville school attack on March 27, 2023 as “Samantha Hyde.”
With shootings on the rise in the United States and law enforcement more reliant on social media to track a crisis situation and identify an attacker, security officials must be able to quickly sift through information and determine what is real and what isn’t. The collection of factual information during an active shooting situation and ongoing crisis preparedness procedures and plans are critical for corporate security teams to ensure their personnel, offices, and facilities remain safe.
According to CNN, to date in 2023, 162 shootings occurred in the U.S., averaging more than one a day. Active shootings increased eight percent from 2020 to 2023, and about 70 percent of active shooter incidents last for five minutes or less.
Concentric recommends staying prepared for an active shooting event in the following ways:
- Ensure the accuracy of information: As we discussed in our 2018 blog article, “Who is Sam Hyde? Identifying Disinformation and Conspiracy During a Crisis Situation,” security teams must establish source credibility and stay abreast of hoaxes and conspiracy theories frequently floated by nefarious actors during any crisis situation.
- Stay vigilant: Be aware of your surroundings, possible dangers, and nearest exits.
- Have a security and escape plan: Concentric works with clients to help them create individualized plans for their offices and personnel.
- Maintain CPR and first aid training: Ensure you know what medical steps are required in a crisis.
- Stay up to date on active shooter response procedures. The Department of Homeland Security advises individuals to take the following steps during an active shooting event:
- Evacuate the area. Having at least two evacuation routes is recommended.
- Hide out if evacuation is not possible. Be sure to take measures to prevent an active shooter from reaching you, such as locking the door and staying out of the shooter’s view.
- Take action against the shooter ONLY as a last resort.
*Concentric offers active shooter training, please reach out if we can help you get prepared!
- CNN: One nation, under gun violence: America tops 100 mass shootings in 2023
- BBC: How many US mass shootings have there been in 2023?
- HSI (health and safety institute): Active Shooter Facts Infographic | AVERT Active Shooter Resources
- DHS: https://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/active_shooter_booklet.pdf
Author: Becky Root, Concentric’s Program Manager for Intelligence and Investigations and Sara Soomro, Concentric’s Intelligence Associate, Global Intelligence