MI5 plans to send out email alerts to the public warning them of changes to the "national threat level", a measure of the risk of terrorist attacks.
As the UK security service responsible for the country's counterterrorism efforts, it said yesterday it will announce the start date and details of the sign-up process soon, but gave little detail away about its plans.
"Email alerts of changes to the national Threat Level and updates on the Security Service website will be available in the near future," the MI5 website said Tuesday. “This will enable subscribers to keep informed of major developments in national security affairs. You will be able to subscribe via a form on the Security Service website. We will publish an update shortly giving the address of the subscription form.”
The government already publishes its assessment of the current terrorist threat level online, rating it as one of five levels: low (an attack is unlikely), moderate, substantial, severe (an attack is highly likely) or critical (an attack is expected imminently).
It first made the threat level assessment public on last August, opening at "severe". It has remained at that level ever since, save for the period just after the first assessment publications when it rose to "critical" after police arrested a number of people allegedly plotting to carry bombs onto aircraft flying to the US.