POLICE are on alert as the easing of lockdown restrictions creates a "greater opportunity" for terrorists to strike, it has been warned.

As coronavirus restrictions continue to ease, security experts in counter terrorism policing have shared concerns that it may create an opportunity for an attack.

An attack in Sussex is "likely", as the country's terrorism threat level remains at substantial, police today confirmed.

To manage the risk, the force has launched a new vigilance campaign, urging people to report any concerns they have.

Chief superintendent Jerry Westerman, head of operations command for Surrey and Sussex Police said: “There is no current specific threat to Surrey or Sussex but following a year of restrictions impacting all our lives, we recognise people will be keen to get out and about as the lockdown begins to ease, and the importance of businesses being able to return to more regular trading patterns.

“But we must continue to follow public health guidance and remain vigilant, not just against the threat of the virus but against the threat of terrorism as well.

“Terrorism will understandably not have been high on anyone’s mind in recent months, and we would describe the threat as temporarily suppressed during lockdown, because it was difficult to go out in public and actually do anything.

“But that means that as the crowded places which have traditionally been the target for terrorists start to fill with people again, there is always the potential for that risk to come back.

“The best defence against the terrorist threat is a collective community effort - where police, security staff, businesses and the public come together to minimise the chance of attack.”

People are being urged to take part in online training that, teaches residents how to react in the unlikely event of a terror attack.

Taking 45 minutes to complete, the official Action Counters Terrorism (ACT) e-learning course that also shows how to spot and report suspicious activity and behaviour.

Hundreds of thousands of people across the UK have already participated.

“This training could save your life, or the lives of others,” added Jerry Westerman.

“Regrettably, we know all too well that a terror attack can happen anywhere and at any time so we work with other national security partners to disrupt those intent on causing harm to our communities, but we need your help to do that effectively.

“Taking part in the free training and remaining vigilant when you’re out and about this summer helps keep us all safe, and creates a hostile place for terrorists to operate.”

If you're suspicious of something that could identify a terrorist threat anywhere in the UK, report it using the quick and confidential online tool to report possible terrorist activity, or call the anti-terrorism hotline on 0800 789 321.

And if you suspect an immediate danger, whether it’s suspicious behaviour, a package or a vehicle, move away and call 999 immediately.