News of the WeekBIOTERRORISM

Labs Tighten Security, Regardless of Need

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Science  16 Nov 2001:
Vol. 294, Issue 5546, pp. 1437
DOI: 10.1126/science.294.5546.1437a

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University researchers and administrators around the country say that the public's fear of bioterrorism has led them to increase security in labs that study anthrax--whether or not they keep bugs that could infect humans. The new precautions include police guards, security cameras, new locks, key-card identification systems, motion detectors, and remodeling that reduces the number of building entrances. Scientists say that although they don't think their labs were ever unsafe, more protection can't hurt, and the measures are good public relations.