Focus areas

Consistent with our need to engage in the full spectrum of activities necessary to mitigate the threat and impact of terrorism and violent extremism, all our efforts will align with and support one or more of our focus areas.

However, at the centre of our counter terrorism activities rests our persons of interest (POI) management process.

The Counter Terrorism Command (CTC) is responsible for the identification and management of POIs that are assessed as representing a terrorist or violent extremist threat.

Since these individuals represent varying levels of threat or may be suited to different management strategies, CTC maintains a diverse POI management capability across its various work units.

This provides Victoria Police an integrated, end-to-end, POI management process which allows us to manage individuals in a highly nuanced and coordinated manner.

Victoria Police’s counter terrorism focus areas

Prevention: stop individuals from becoming terrorists or supporting violent extremism

Since we believe that prevention is better than cure, we are committed to stopping people from wanting to engage in terrorist behaviour in the first instance.

Every terrorist-related incident, including those involving the arrest of suspected terrorists, can have damaging effects across a range of areas.

These incidents can heighten inter-community tensions, negatively impact perceptions of public safety, and be exploited by terrorist propaganda.

Current actions include:

  • Delivery of dedicated early intervention programs to support individuals at risk of being radicalised to violence.
  • The Victorian Fixated Threat Assessment Centre (VFTAC), which provides a state-wide service that works with individuals, many of whom have a major mental illness, who pose a threat to others.

Protection: reduce the vulnerability of Victoria to acts of terrorism and violent extremism

Terrorists, through their propaganda and actions, have demonstrated a preference to attack specific locations and sites. These include crowded places and infrastructure.

It is therefore critical that Victoria Police, in partnership with other areas of government and private industry, work to mitigate the risk associated with these and other potential targets.

Current actions include:

  • Victoria Police SHIELD, an information sharing program with the Victorian public and private security sectors.
  • Victoria Police’s coordination of the Crowded Places Network, a group of owners and operators of critical infrastructure, major events venues and crowded places.

Disruption: identify and disrupt specific threats of terrorism and other forms of violent extremism

It is not always possible to prevent individuals from wanting to engage in acts of terrorism or violent extremism.

As a result, it is vital that Victoria Police, along with our partner agencies, proactively identify and mitigate threats to the Victorian community.

Our disruption activities need to be carried out in a timely, effective and proportionate manner.

Current actions include:

  • Maintenance of a strong intelligence collection and investigations capability, particularly through the activities of CTC’s Security Investigation Unit.
  • An end-to-end POI management operating model which integrates the capacities of CTC’s various work units, thereby providing a flexible and comprehensive disruptive capability.
  • Substantial commitment to the Victorian Joint Counter Terrorism Team (JCTT), an integrated investigative capability staffed by Victoria Police, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO).

Response: manage the short- and long-term consequences of an act of terrorism or violent extremism

In the event of an act of terrorism in Victoria, an immediate response will be required to mitigate its short-term effects.

This immediate response seeks to protect life and property and contain the effects of an incident.

Current actions include:

  • Engaging in extensive exercising to ensure that our engagement with critical partners and response to a range of incidents is well-practiced and refined.
  • Established command-and-control capabilities that include the Joint Intelligence Group (JIG), access to specialist legal support and Victoria Police’s Incident Command and Control System (ICCS).