Risk Assessment

For Places of Worship

Risk Assessment

For Places of Worship

For all faiths across Europe

Places of worship are by design open to all, but this can also make them vulnerable to attacks. 

EFI carries out risk assessments of places of worship to identify threats and areas that need to be strengthened from a security perspective, and makes recommendations on how to do so.


4 hours+

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Places of worship are intended to be open and welcoming to all – they serve local faith communities and have to be readily accessible. However, this very trait also makes them vulnerable to attack, posing risks for faith leaders, staff and worshippers. Sadly, the record of incidents of damage, vandalism, desecration, theft, etc. directed against places of worship in Europe and elsewhere all too clearly illustrates the security threat faced by places of worship.

It is important to strengthen security of places of worship while retaining their open nature, and ensuring worshippers and others can still readily avail their services. EFI supports this by conducting on-site risk assessments of places of worship, identifying vulnerabilities and making recommendations/providing guidance on how to address these.

Scope of Risk Assessment Service

EFI risk assessments comprise a combination of on-site inspection and training delivery. Upon receiving a request for such support, EFI’s response can be broken down into the following steps: 

  1. Security and safety workshop – conducted for faith institution managements/volunteers and other relevant partners and stakeholders.
  2. Security and safety audit/inspection visit – carried out to each faith institution to identify: a) security risks, and the likelihood of these taking place, as well as likely consequences, and b) assets, including physical assets (building, equipment, systems, etc.), information (computer hardware and software, processes and data) and human assets (staff, volunteers, visitors, wider faith community, etc.). This risk and asset analysis is carried out with workshop participants.
  3. Detailed reports – produced identifying potential security risks and areas of improvement, as well as measures that can be taken for this, and prioritisation of protective actions.
  4. Implementation guidance/support – providing guidance on how to strengthen security, and connecting to local and national contacts who can support this (e.g. by supplying requisite equipment, installing infrastructure).


The EFI risk assessment of places of worship has the following outcomes:

  • Identification of areas of concern from a security perspective
  • Strategies to mitigate risks and improve security
  • Awareness-raising among all stakeholders of risks, actions needed and who is responsible for these
  • Formulation of emergency responses
  • Checklist of all recommendations, which can be ticked off as they are implemented.