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Multi Agency Surveillance Training – What is a Surveillance Simulator?

Surveillance – The close observation of a subject or subjects of interest allegedly involved in acts of Terrorism or Criminality.

MAST – Multi Agency Surveillance Simulators

A surveillance simulator allows qualified surveillance instructors to safely demonstrate and teach enhanced surveillance training tactics, techniques and procedures in a classroom environment. So why not just get in your vehicles or go walkabout, after receiving the theory, and start practising?

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There are a number of factors which need to be considered before answering this. MAST allows 10 surveillance students to safely practise procedures with only 1 Surveillance instructor. On the road or highway typically 1 surveillance car has 3 students to 1 instructor during the basic level of training. For a course of 20 students, MAST would require two groups of 10 and one instructor. To operate a grey fleet of surveillance vehicles on the road or highway, with the same number of students (10) would require 4 cars and five instructors. The fifth instructor remains at the surveillance school monitoring, tracking and controlling the grey fleet surveillance cars . The cost price comparison between using classroom based surveillance simulators versus running a grey fleet of cars, plus the associated costs of insurance, fuel, servicing costs, additional instructors and the widely talked about cost to the environment all adds up to large sums of tax payers money.


The environment can all take its toll on productive training time. Transit time from the surveillance school to the training area needs to be factored into the training schedule. Rural areas typically have heavy farm machinery on the roads causing disruption to normal traffic flow, urban ares are just frankly busy and overcrowded. Commuter traffic and the school run drop off’s are times on the road best avoided. The weather can also seriously impede surveillance training, particularly when there has been heavy snow fall or a hard frost. Snow will likely postpone training until the roads have been cleared and a hard frost means the roads maybe a dangerous risk to consider. Torrential downpours leaves roads prone to localised flooding and increases the risk of accidents from aqua planning. Heavy fog significantly reduces viability and adds to the risk assessment matrix regarding the causes of accidents.

There is another reason why the use of Surveillance Simulation Training is on the increase. Firstly, it can be used as a de-risking tool for the surveillance instructors to determine right from the very off set the style of driving a student may portray on the road or highway. A student who maybe anxious or could be a bit of a former boy racer, who is hard on the accelerator and brakes, could be an early indication that their driving skills are not of the required standard. Additional time spent in the surveillance simulators may improve the students style of driving or indeed may not. Instructors may fail students if they are unsafe or do not fall within the realms. Secondly, there is an increased likelihood of third party awareness when trying to conduct surveillance training within the community. A car being driven with 3 passengers, you may not think, stands out like a sore thumb. So, multiple cars being driven 4 up in the same area, will stand out to the lay person on the street. That lay person may then get in touch with local law enforcement and report that a vehicle and it’s occupants may be acting suspiciously. Therefore the correct local authorities shall be notified of the training event, the vehicles and people involved. Getting the appropriate authorities approval takes time to organise and facilitate.

MAST is portable and can be delivered as a managed service at the point of need. MAST does not require local authority or local law enforcement approvals. MAST is unaffected by the environment, in fact we can add all of those features into the immersive environment at the click of a button. MAST can evaluate surveillance students driving techniques by calculating how smoothly gear changes are, steering usage, braking, correct use of hand controls such as windscreen wipers, fog lights and it can monitor eye movement. Near misses within MAST are captured by the system and can be replayed to the surveillance student. Unsafe practises can be ironed out and hopefully mitigated in the classroom before any potential surveillance student ever drives a grey or white fleet vehicle on the road.

The future of MAST is happening now. MAST is not just a state of the art surveillance simulator, allowing surveillance students to drive whilst following a subject of interest, MAST allows AI controlled subjects of interest to be followed in Virtual Reality. Students can control their own AI within the simulated environment via the XBox controller. If the AI stops the vehicle of interest and walks into the shopping centre, you follow that subject of interest fully immersed in VR.

MAST has over 5000+ 3D CAD modelled buildings which has taken a dedicated team of modellers 6+ months to create, 10,000 AI controlled user configurable AI people and 5,000+ AI controlled vehicles all cleverly operating within one UK Geo-Specific region. MAST has been likened to ‘The Sims 4’ except that every AI is entirely controlled by the scenario you wish to create. Multiple subjects of interest all operating independently, with multiple surveillance teams immersed within the scenario, polishing and honing their surveillance skills. Do you think you have got what it takes to become a fully fledged surveillance operative? MAST will certainly help your organisation to establish whether you do and it will also significantly reduce the training costs associated with training this highly specialised skill.

MAST is not available for the general public and neither is MAST the next evolution of GTA5! MAST is vastly different and better than that, however, MAST is not a game. Mast is only available for Military, Law Enforcement, Homeland Security Services and other Government Agencies. If you think your organisation would benefit from using MAST please get in touch.

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Let’s discuss your requirements, develop your ideas and deliver this as a fully managed service.