Target hardening

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Security measures taken to protect the Houses of Parliament in London, UK. These heavy blocks of concrete are designed to prevent a car bomb or other device being rammed into the building.

Target hardening, also referred to simply as hardening when made clear by the context, is a term used by police officers, those working in security, and the military referring to the strengthening of the security of a building or installation in order to protect it in the event of attack or reduce the risk of theft.[1][2] It is believed that a "strong, visible defense will deter or delay an attack".[3]

In terms of home security, target hardening may also be referred to as crime prevention through environmental design. This can include ensuring all doors and windows are closed and securely locked, removing any trees or bushes that could offer suitable hiding places or could be used to climb to a higher level of the property.[2] However, for a business, taking target hardening too far can send the wrong message out to potential customers.[4]

In military or counter-terrorism terms, target hardening refers to ensuring strategic or tactical assets are secured against enemy attack.[5]

Other more specific terms, with obvious meaning, such as "blast hardening" are used.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Target Hardening". Business Crime Direct. Archived from the original on 2007-12-16. Retrieved 2007-11-30. 
  2. ^ a b "Target Hardening". Vancouver Police Department. Archived from the original on August 31, 2006. Retrieved 2007-11-30. 
  3. ^ Tom O'Connor. "Approaches to Target Hardening". Austin Peay State University. Archived from the original on 2007-07-12. Retrieved 2007-11-30. 
  4. ^ Joseph Murrary. "Target Hardening". Blue Ridge Community College. Archived from the original on 2008-09-14. Retrieved 2007-11-30. 
  5. ^ Tom O'Connor. "Incident Management of Domestic Terrorism". Austin Peay State University. Archived from the original on 2007-07-13. Retrieved 2007-11-30. 
  6. ^ Designing Blast Hardened Structures for Military and Civilian Use (abstract)

Further reading[edit]