If facing an active shooter/violent intruder situation, use the below recommendations to guide your response decisions.

RUN – when an active shooter/violent intruder is nearby

HIDE – if evacuation is not possible, find a safe place to hide

Your hiding place should:

FIGHT – as a last resort and only if your life is in danger

Information You Should Provide to the Emergency Operator

  • Clarify your location on the MIT Campus
  • Location of the attacker
  • Number of attackers, if more than one
  • Physical description of attacker(s)
  • Number and type of weapons held by the attacker(s)
  • Number of potential victims at the location

How to React When Law Enforcement Arrives

  • Remain calm, and follow officers’ instructions
  • Immediately raise hands and spread fingers
  • Keep hands visible at all times
  • Avoid making quick movements toward officers such as attempting to hold on to them for safety
  • Avoid pointing, screaming and/or yelling
  • Do not stop to ask officers for help or direction when evacuating, just proceed in the direction from which officers are entering the premises


Several preparedness measures exist to possibly prevent or increase your chance of survival.

Recognizing and Reporting Unusual/Threatening/Violent Behavior

Although there is no exact profile of an active shooter/violent intruder, there may be some “warning signs” or “indicators” exhibited before they act. These can range from unusual behaviors all the way to violent acts. Taken separately, these behaviors may be minor, but an accumulation of multiple indicators could be cause for concern. If you know of someone exhibiting the below behaviors, report them to any MIT official (MIT Police, Dean on Call, Mental Health, etc.) so they can be reviewed appropriately:

  • Paranoid or delusional statements
  • Sudden changes in personality or performance
  • Depression/suicidal ideation
  • Increased isolation
  • Interest in or acquisition of weapons.
  • Stalking
  • Threats/acts of aggression/violence

Active Shooter/Violent Intruder Training

In conjunction with MIT Police, MIT Emergency Management conducts training for our community. Broken down into three progressive phases, this training reviews possible indicators of potential attackers and teaches participants the above response actions. Visit this page, or email em-staff@mit.edu, to learn more.