The Emergency Alert System Dilemma: How can authorities leverage technological advancements to aid (and not diminish) strategic disaster risk reduction endeavors?

People across the globe have come to rely heavily on technology, which has proven to be an exceedingly effective tool for wireless emergency alert systems. Wireless emergency alert systems can take a number of forms, but primarily use cell tower and Internet pathways to notify the public on a variety of emergency situations by sending text alerts to mobile phones.hawai

During the wildfire outbreak in California in December, 2017, authorities sent emergency alerts to over 22 million cellphones.

During Hurricane Irma in September 2017 and Hurricane Harvey in August 2017, emergency alerts informed millions of people on changes to the storms’ strengths and trajectories.

The efficacy of emergency alert systems is generally acknowledged yet not without scrutiny.

On Saturday, January 13, 2018, a false alert sent to cellphones across Hawaii sent hundreds of thousands of people into panic as they mistakenly received an alert that read “BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.” As it was, Hawaiians had already been on high emotional alert as a result of escalating tensions between the US and North Korea.

Officials stated that the alert was mistakenly sent as a result of human error, not the workings of hackers or a foreign government. Senator Brian Schats of Hawaii wrote on Twitter: “This system failed miserably and we need to start over”.

The strongest argument against emergency alert systems is their ability to create unwarranted panic in populations facing no threats. So, we pose the question to you- our readers- are emergency alert systems innovative advancements that can save lives? Are they invasive technological-overkill that generate false panic? Or do they fall somewhere in between? How can authorities leverage technological advancements to aid (and not diminish) strategic disaster risk reduction endeavors?

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Wishing all our friends a wonderful holiday season

Happy Christmas

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Lotan Group In Nice

This gallery contains 1 photo.

Lotan Group was invited to talk at the EUROMED conference about our work in Nice. to see the full article go to:    

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International Air Transport Association (IATA) and BeST (Be-Strategic Solutions) to Offer New War-Gaming and Table Top Exercise Computerized Platform called Scenario.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) and BeST (Be-Strategic Solutions) signed an agreement on 5th July to collaborate for the purpose of generating customized Simulations for the Aviation Industry using a computer-based program called SCENARIO.

SCENARIO is intended to immerse participants in simulated and interactive scenarios and help organizations to:

  • Effectively map out and evaluate risks by simulating unpredicted factors
  • Improve the efficiency of risk management by regular rehearsal of crisis response plans

SCENARIO – presents a unique opportunity for organizations to enhance their decision-making process and evaluate preparedness.  Participants in the gaming process operate in a virtual surrounding, which simulates unexpected challenges. The game reflects prevailing operational procedures designed to confront critical strategic dilemmas. The players represent competitors, suppliers, rivals, experts, government authorities, media outlets, etc. The unique interactive nature of the strategic gaming simulation creates a dynamic learning experience, accessible from multiple locations, providing a cost effective and modular solution.


IATA Chief Information Officer Pascal Buchner commented, “Every crisis, though rare, is different. That is why constant preparation and regular rehearsals of the crisis plans are essential. This collaboration with BeST will provide airlines with additional tools to enhance their crisis response by simulating various scenarios, practicing their plans, and identifying any weaknesses that need to be addressed.”


SCENARIO is designed to prepare individuals and businesses to deal with any crisis by refining decision-making processes and confronting critical strategic dilemmas.” says BeST Co-CEO Mr. Dotan Sagi. We welcome the opportunity to work with IATA to increase the effectiveness of crises management in the Aviation industry.

About IATA

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) represents some 275 airlines comprising 83% of global air traffic. IATA’s mission is to represent, lead and serve the airline industry.

About BeST

BeST brings together professionals in the Aviation sector together with Crisis Management experts as well as the world of Academia to create a system that focuses on decision makers and the processes they go through while dealing with different events. Together, our team has been able to build specific algorithms that analyze performance in real time and allow quick de-briefings presenting the decision-making process graphically with unique insights.

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Lotan Group in the News



Working hard together with the municipality of Nice in its continuous effort to provide effective and efficient security solutions for its citizens.

  • An Excerpt from the news France2 featuring Mr. Zeev  Afriat our head of business development in France

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Exploring the Meaning of Discrepancies Between Policy and Practice

By Chelsea Zfaz

We live in a world in which established policies offer some degree of stability in the face of general chaos in our professional, public and private lives. But what actually is a policy, and how does it actually serve us as individuals, employees and organizations?pic

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a policy is a definite course or method of action selected from among alternatives and in light of given conditions to guide and determine present and future decisions.

A policy is more than just a specified course of action adopted for the sake of efficiency, expediency or prudence; it is a mechanism that should facilitate effectual, strategic decision-making.

So why is it that practice so frequently variates from policy? And- perhaps more importantly- should we be critical of those individuals and organizations whose practices stray from their policies? Or should we commend those who are able to operate independently of established doctrines?


A number of factors play into the answers to these questions. More importantly than either criticizing or commending adherence to policy (or lack thereof), is assessing the underlying causal factors behind such discrepancies.

Why was the policy not implemented into practice? Has the employee of the organization failed to understand the intended function of the policy? Could the policy have been ineffective in practice, and therefore have been deliberately circumvented? Or perhaps the overarching organization fosters a culture of independence and therefore curtails the role of policy?

Understanding the root causes of human behavior and motivation in the context of an organizations’ decision-making and operational processes sheds valuable light on the efficacy of organizations’ policies, practices and ethos.

We at BeST are working closely with Sociologists from various universities in Israel, developing algorithms that will reveal underlying causes behind our clients’ behaviors and decision-making processes.

When preparing for a crisis, understanding why people act as they do can be as important as understanding how people act as they do.

Mitigate Risks. Reduce Vulnerabilities. Prepare for a crisis as BeST you can.

Call us to learn more about how BeST can help you prepare for your next crisis.


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Is the perception of preparedness conducive – or threatening – to preparedness?

In today’s fast-paced and evolving world, both individuals and businesses rarely have as much resources at their disposal as they would like. Across the globe, people are overworked, operations are overloaded and budgets are constrained. So why should we prepare for crises that may not ever occur?

Because being prepared for threats to which you and your business are vulnerable could save human and financial resources tenfold in the future.

BeST would like to welcome Chelsea Zfaz to their team. Chelsea comes from the field of disaster management and has been deployed to a number of countries as part of international emergency response missions.

“Throughout my time working in emergency response, I noticed a trend recurring with nearly everyone I worked with- from government ministers to tribal chiefs- people are pic12rarely as prepared for disasters as they think they are. Experiencing this reality in various disaster zones with so many different stakeholders really sparked my interest in strategic disaster preparedness.”

We cannot prevent all disasters from occurring, but we can reduce our vulnerability to relevant threats and mitigate potential damage and loss of life. The key ingredients to handling any disaster are training and coordination.

Herein lies the innovative value of the BeST system; it prepares individuals and businesses to deal with any crisis by refining decision-making processes and confronting critical strategic dilemmas.

 “In my opinion, one of the most valuable features of the system is its ability to map discrepancies in individual and organizational policy and practice. By tracking differences in organizations’ perceptions of how they will behave in crisis compared to how they actually behave, BeST offers a rare window into organizational learning and development, thus enhancing personal, departmental and organizational problem-solving behaviors and crisis management capacity”.

real Interaction

real Interaction



Expected Interaction

Expected Interaction

 When disaster strikes, the time to prepare has passed. Prepare for tomorrow today.

Call us to learn more about BeST and to organize a demonstration.

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Are you the leader or just a “central” component of your organization’s crisis management process?

As the first quarter of 2017 winds down, we at BeST headquarters sat down to review insights from more than 15 games we carried out in the last few months. Interestingly, we found many recurring themes.

One of these insights can be extracted from our social interactions analysis maps: there is Picture1a fundamental difference between individuals who function as central players and those who function as leaders of crisis management processes.

Our social network analysis (SNA) investigates social structures through the use of networks and graph theories. Our graphs analyze the overarching structures in terms of players or groups of players and the ties, edges, or links that connect them.

During or after games, we are often asked to point out leadership themes and to determine whether the expected leaders stepped up to the challenge or if someone else took control of the crisis management process.

 It is important to point out that leadership is assessed not by the number of different players or interactions a certain individual deals with, but by the types of decisions made and the accountability measures subsequently taken by a certain individual.

As opposed to leadership, centrality means determining which players are essential to the process, even if they are not expected to make critical decisions. These are determined by comparing organizations’ expected processes to real time behaviors and aiming to quantify the “importance” or “influence” of a particular player by use of a number of measurements which assess centrality.

As we learn more about these two important factors of SNA, we have decided to address both issues by enabling our users to input their insights into two new types of maps titled leadership and centrality. This allows BeST users to see which employees in their organizations function as the central nodes of the crisis management apparatuses and which employees function as the real and expected leaders of the crisis management process.

  • Are you the “leader” or are you “central” in your organization crisis management plan?
  • Will the results of a crisis management process of an actual crisis be different than your crisis management plan?

Call us to learn more about BeST and to organize a demonstration.

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BeST is on the GSA Schedule!!

BeST is proud to announce that as part of our growth in the United States we have been approved by the General Services Administration.nav-logo

We can be found on the GSA schedule 70 IT.

Contact us directly  or our US partners in order to see how BeST can help you prepare for the next crisis and help you enhance your business continuity capabilities.




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Success in Washington!!

Finishing a very exciting week in Washington where BeST was used as the main platform to carry out a major Crisis Management War-Game for one of the largest corporations in the

The Game is considered a great success with BeST receiving rave reviews as to its ability to present encompassing graphic representations to the decision making process and the ability to provide immediate points to the de-briefing process ( or Hotwash as our American friends call it).

For those of you attending Passenger Terminal Expo in Amsterdam in March. we will be there talking about a recent case study with IATA.

Looking forward to hearing from you!!

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