Safety has been a growing concern at shopping malls, which have served as the site for a number of public shootings over the past few years. Just this month, three people were shot outside of a mall in Pittsburgh and two people were arrested over an alleged plan to attack a mall in Canada.
Back in 2013, a three-day attack on a mall in Kenya left dozens dead. The same group that claimed responsibility for that attack is the same one making the new round of threats. It specifically mentioned Minnesota's Mall of America, which generates nearly $2 billion in economic activity for the state each year, according to its website.
The mall issued a statement saying that it is taking extra precautions.
"Retailers are moving quickly to implement their top-level emergency plans," said Bill Thorne, a senior vice president at the National Retail Federation, in a statement. "That includes alerting personnel and shoppers to maintain a heightened level of vigilance at all times."
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He added that retailers work with federal, state and local law enforcement all year long, including open communication regarding potential threats. The trade organization also makes available on its website information on how to deal with an active shooter on the property, including when to take action and the importance of developing an emergency plan.
ICSC has taken similar actions to keep shoppers safe. After the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the group spent $2 million to develop a training course on how to respond to an act of terrorism; mall security workers can sign up for the program free of charge. 30,000 officers have completed the course.