March 26, 2011 in Department of Homeland Security
The Nation has more than 100,000 dams. Of this number, approximately 82,000 are listed in the National Inventory of Dams (NID), which generally includes dams greater than 25 feet in height or reservoirs having more than 50 acre-feet in storage capacity. In the NID, the downstream hazard potential (e.g., the amount of risk or damage a dam can pose because of failure or negligent operation) is classified as high, significant, or low. In the current NID database, approximately 12,000 dams are classified as high hazard potential from a dam safety perspective. However, only a very small percentage of high-hazard dams represent a potential for causing mass casualties.
March 10, 2011 in Department of Homeland Security, Federal Bureau of Investigation
Kevin William Harpham was arrested in Colville, Washington by federal law enforcement on 9 March 2011 in connection with the improvised explosive device (IED) found along the route of a Martin Luther King, Jr. Day “MLK Unity March” in Spokane, Washington on 17 January 2011. On 17 January 2011, three sanitation workers in Spokane, Washington discovered a Swiss Army backpack containing an RCIED immediately prior to the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day “MLK Unity March.” The device was placed along the parade route. Based on preliminary forensic examinations, we assess with medium confidenceii that the IED was designed to fire directional fragmentation similar to a single shot shotgun with buckshot or cannon with a grapeshot round. We likewise assess that the device was viable and could have caused personal injury or death.
March 9, 2011 in Department of Homeland Security, Federal Bureau of Investigation
Terrorists remain interested in exploiting postal and commercial shipping companies to conduct or support attacks in the United States. Publicity surrounding the more than 40,000 incidents involving unknown or suspicious substances related to the U.S. Mail since 2001 likely reinforces violent extremists’ belief that the postal sector is a useful mechanism for conducting an attack, as it demonstrates that mail containing potentially harmful substances can be delivered without arousing suspicion or being discovered until the recipient opens the letter or package.
February 16, 2011 in Department of Homeland Security, Federal Bureau of Investigation
FOUO DHS-FBI Cyanide Production Indicators Reference Guide from November 2010.
February 16, 2011 in News
Since 9/11, the U.S. Government has engaged in a multibillion-dollar effort to construct a domestic intelligence network for the ostensible purpose of combating terrorism, criminal activity and violent extremism. One of the central components of this system is the network of “fusion centers” that have sprung up around the country over the last several years. These entities integrate local law enforcement with a state’s police force, Department of Justice, or Office of Emergency Management and are designed to facilitate law enforcement intelligence activities throughout the jurisdiction, providing federal authorities access to local information and databases, while simultaneously allowing federal agencies to disseminate classified intelligence materials to local authorities. There are almost always federal representatives present in local fusion centers and Secretary Napolitano has recently testified that DHS is “committed to having an officer in each fusion center.” Most fusion centers also work with representatives of the private sector, particularly those industries related to so-called “critical infrastructure and key resources.”
February 16, 2011 in News
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the National Basketball Association are promoting a security-awareness campaign at this weekend’s NBA All-Star Game in Los Angeles. The campaign, titled “If You See Something, Say Something,” was originally implemented by New York City’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority and was later licensed to the federal agency for its own national program. In the past six months, the campaign has been promoted in 9,000 federal buildings nationwide. “The idea is simple,” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said at a press conference in Washington. “It’s asking the American people to be vigilant and to aide local law enforcement.”
February 15, 2011 in Intelligence Fusion Centers
A nearly complete list of the actual physical locations, phone numbers, and email addresses of fusion centers around the United States.
February 9, 2011 in Department of Homeland Security
As the President said in his State of the Union address, in the face of violent extremism, “we are responding with the strength of our communities.” A vast majority of people in every American community resoundingly reject violence, and this certainly includes the violent, al-Qaeda-style ideology that claims to launch attacks in the name of their widely rejected version of Islam. We must use these facts as a tool against the threat of homegrown violent extremism. In conjunction with these communities and with the Department of Justice and the Program Manager for the Information Sharing Environment, we have published guidance on best practices for community partnerships, which has been distributed to local law enforcement across the country. DHS also holds regular regional meetings – which include state and local law enforcement, state and local governments, and community organizations – in Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, and Minneapolis. These regional meetings have enabled participants to provide and receive feedback on successful community-oriented policing and other programs aimed at preventing violence.
February 5, 2011 in Department of Homeland Security, Federal Bureau of Investigation, National Counterterrorism Center, U.S. Northern Command
This Joint Special Event Threat Assessment (JSETA) addresses potential threats to the National Football League (NFL)USPER Super Bowl XLV, which will be played on 6 February 2011 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. It focuses on potential threats to the game—and to various NFL-sanctioned events scheduled for the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex-area during the 12 days prior to the game—from international and domestic terrorists, cyber actors, criminals, and foreign intelligence services.
January 20, 2011 in Department of Homeland Security
Safe Mail Handling Procedures. It is important that every employee handling or receiving mail can identify a suspicious letter or parcel. Although occurrences are extremely rare, it is essential to know what to do when suspicious mail is received. All staff must remain alert for the tell-tale signs of potentially dangerous mail and packages.
January 19, 2011 in Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives, Federal Bureau of Investigation
This booklet is a quick reference guide describing indicators and warnings related to homemade explosives. It is intended to aid military, federal, state, and local law enforcement personnel to visually recognize the materials, chemicals, and equipment associated with the manufacture of homemade explosives. The examples in this guide were selected based on historical incidents, intelligence on emerging threats, and the commercial availability of the components. Given the variety of substitute materials available for the manufacture of homemade explosives, this guide should not be considered all inclusive. Instead, it should be used to establish a basic understanding of typical materials, chemicals, and equipment associated with the manufacture of homemade explosives and to enable on-scene personnel to determine if they are dealing with a potentially dangerous situation.
January 14, 2011 in Department of Homeland Security
Terrorists could use hydrogen peroxide and organic fuel mixtures (HPOMs), made by mixing concentrated hydrogen peroxide with a variety of organic fuels, in an attack against the United States. The viability, performance, and sensitivity of these explosives vary and are based on a number of factors including the fuel chosen, the ratio of peroxide to fuel, and the concentration of peroxide used. Peroxide can be concentrated from lower percentages by simple evaporation through heating, and it is readily available in a variety of stores. The organic fuels used in these mixtures include common products such as cumin, black pepper, flour, sugar, honey, acetone, nitromethane, ethanol (grain alcohol) or ground coffee. HPOMs are extremely sensitive to impact, friction, static/spark, and heat and in large quantities can self-heat and ignite if in sunlight or a hot room.
January 3, 2011 in Department of Homeland Security
FOUO Department of Homeland Security Introduction to Explosives from April 2008.
December 31, 2010 in News
A year after a Nigerian man allegedly tried to blow up a Detroit-bound airliner, officials say they have made it easier to add individuals’ names to a terrorist watch list and improved the government’s ability to thwart an attack in the United States. The failure to put Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab on the watch list last year renewed concerns that the government’s system to screen out potential terrorists was flawed. Even though Abdulmutallab’s father had told U.S. officials of his son’s radicalization in Yemen, government rules dictated that a single-source tip was insufficient to include a person’s name on the watch list. Since then, senior counterterrorism officials say they have altered their criteria so that a single-source tip, as long as it is deemed credible, can lead to a name being placed on the watch list. The government’s master watch list is one of roughly a dozen lists, or databases, used by counterterrorism officials. Officials have periodically adjusted the criteria used to maintain it.
October 26, 2010 in Department of Homeland Security, Federal Bureau of Investigation
(U//FOUO) DHS and the FBI assess that, given the current evolving and diversifying Homeland threat environment, recent incidents involving small arms operations here in the United States and abroad demonstrate the need for continued vigilance and awareness. Small arms operations could be employed through a range of tactics from a lone shooter—as illustrated by the 1 September incident in Silver Spring, Maryland at the headquarters of a U.S. cable network—to a small-unit assault operation.
October 21, 2010 in Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security
The purpose of the Agreement is to set forth terms by which DHS and DoD will provide personnel, equipment, and facilities in order to increase interdepartmental collaboration in strategic planning for the Nation’s cybersecurity, mutual support for cybersecurity capabilities development, and synchronization of current operational cybersecurity mission activities. Implementing this Agreement will focus national cybersecurity efforts, increasing the overall capacity and capability of both DHS’s homeland security and DoD’s national security missions, while providing integral protection for privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties.
October 8, 2010 in Department of Homeland Security
DHS video designed to raise the level of awareness for retail and shopping center employees by highlighting the indicators of suspicious activity, this video provides information to help employees identify and report suspicious activities and threats in a timely manner.
September 29, 2010 in Department of Homeland Security
The National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (NCCIC) and US-CERT are aware of malicious e-mails received on September 9, 2010, by public and private sector stakeholders. Organizations should warn users to avoid opening suspicious e-mails and monitor activity to the following URL:
September 17, 2010 in News
The U.S. government must shift its terrorism focus and resources away from Pennsylvania Avenue and onto Main Street, several national security experts told Congress on Wednesday. They had a special message for the American public: Buck up. Overreacting to failed plots and near misses, they warned, only encourages terrorists. Nine years after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the experts told a House committee Wednesday, the federal government’s effort to predict, prevent and respond to terror plots must focus more on local law enforcement, public safety personnel and hometown residents.