Simply stated, the LEIS Service is the “pipe” used to connect state and local law enforcement with DHS law enforcement.
The attempted bombing in Times Square on 1 May 2010 highlights the need to identify Homegrown Violent Extremists before they carry out a terrorist act. The ability of the bomber to operate under the radar demonstrates the difficulties associated with identifying terrorist activity and reinforces the need for law enforcement, at all levels, to be vigilant and identify individuals who are planning violence or other illegal activities in support of terrorism.
The Homeland Security Department plans to test futuristic iris scan technology that stores digital images of people’s eyes in a database and is considered a quicker alternative to fingerprints. The department will run a two-week test in October of commercially sold iris scanners at a Border Patrol station in McAllen, Texas, where they will be used on illegal immigrants, said Arun Vemury, program manager at the department’s Science and Technology branch. “The test will help us determine how viable this is for potential (department) use in the future,” Vemury said.
So if 9/11 happened in a Web 1.0 world, terrorists are certainly in a Web 2.0 world now. And many of the technological tools that expedite communication today were in their infancy or didn’t even exist in 2001. So therefore, more than just hardware, we need new thinking. When we add a prominent former computer hacker to our Homeland Security Advisory Council, as I just did, it helps us understand our own weaknesses that could be exploited by our adversaries. And the threats we face are by their very nature asymmetrical. Terrorism more often has become privatized violence—does not rely on links, links to an army or to a sovereign state. We often hear that this is what our globalized era looks like, but what is most salient about today’s environment is that it is also networked. And in a networked world, information true and false moves everywhere all the time. And in that networked world, everyone who is part of the network, meaning all of us, can enjoy the tremendous benefits, but also must be ready and willing to learn about and help address the vulnerabilities that come with these benefits. So the team we put on the field needs to be bigger, better networked and better trained. What are the implications for this network world for the Department of Homeland Security? It means that we must continue to take an all-hazards approach to preparedness, meaning we prepare for natural disasters as well as terrorist attacks. We need to comprehend and anticipate an expanding range of threats.
At the heart of this are fusion centers. Starting with just one in 2006, there are now 72 fusion centers nationwide, serving as focal points for information-sharing among federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial partners. By the end of this year, all 72 fusion centers should be able to analyze information and spot trends in order to effectively share timely intelligence – with local law enforcement, and with DHS, so the information can also be used by others within the Intelligence Community. To support this vision: we’re prioritizing fusion centers in our FY2011 grants, and looking for ways to support them through additional technology and personnel, including the deployment of highly-trained experts in critical infrastructure; we’re deploying experienced DHS analysts to every one of these centers – 64 at last count – and we won’t stop until we have them in every one; and we’re linking them together, and with DHS headquarters, through the classified Homeland Security Data Network.
(U//FOUO) Detailed video obtained through live Web-based camera feeds combined with street-level and direct overhead imagery views from Internet imagery sites allow terrorists to conduct remote surveillance of multiple potential targets without exposing themselves to detection.
The purpose of the Nevada State Homeland Security Strategy (SHSS) is to identify and address statewide priorities to achieve and sustain a strengthened ability to prevent, detect, deter, mitigate against, prepare for, respond to and recover from any natural, manmade and/or technological emergency or disaster up to and including any act of terrorism. The State, through implementation of this strategy, is seeking outcomes that will ensure a safe and secure Nevada through enhanced capabilities in intelligence, surveillance, rapid first response and recovery, the protection of critical infrastructure, and to promote public education and awareness.
DHS Suspicious Activity Reporting Selection Standards, August 2010.
(U//FOUO) The vast majority of suspicious incidents are not terrorism related. Incident reporting continues to reveal most involve members of the traveling public who do not have intent to cause harm. Intoxicated passengers, people traveling without proper identification or with propaganda materials, and persons with mental health needs are generally not considered suspicious and are generally not included in the weekly summary. However, some incidents are more serious and are reported for situational awareness. Incidents involving notable drug or weapons concealment, possible surveillance, laser targeting of aircraft, possible insider collusion, exploitable gaps in security, and some unusual behaviors at transportation venues are discussed as they may involve technologies or tactics which may lend insight to future terrorist tradecraft.
A Homeland strike soon after the London attacks is conceivable but unlikely, and if and when it comes, it could just as well be on other “soft targets” as on mass transit. These were the conclusions of 18 leading academic terrorism experts, former senior National Security Council and DHS officials, mass transit security specialists, and other nongovernmental experts and creative thinkers polled by the DHS Analytic Red Cell immediately after the July 7 attacks.
The purpose of the Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan (MYTEP) is to provide a follow-on companion document to Florida‟s Domestic Security Strategic Plan. It is a living document that will be updated and refined annually. The MYTEP provides a roadmap for Florida to follow in accomplishing the priorities and goals described in the Florida‟s Domestic Security Strategic Plan. Each State Priority is linked to a corresponding National Priority, and, if applicable, an Improvement Plan (IP) action. The priority is further linked to the associated target capabilities that would facilitate accomplishment of the priority and the training and exercises that will help the jurisdiction obtain those capabilities and achieve that priority.
* 240 State, Local & Federal officers/analysts
* 41 agencies
* Co-located with the FBI JTTF & FIG
* IGA signed by all agencies
* Three year commitment
The Terrorism Liaison Officer (TLO) is designed to be a nationally interconnected program of designated law enforcement officers, firefighters, military, and other first responders that attend an approved and accredited course of instruction. This shared learning experience prepares the TLOs to fill a specific role within their organization as a link or “liaison.” The TLO program was initiated in California via the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) around 2005-2006 by a Anthony Lukin. According to several proposals for the program, Fusion Centers in California “utilize the Terrorism Liaison Officer (TLO) Program to foster communication and collaboration amongst the fire service; law enforcement; the federal homeland security and intelligence communities and public safety stakeholders. The TLOs serve as the conduit through which homeland security and crime-related information flows from the field to the Fusion Center for assessment and analysis. The network also serves as the vehicle to carry actionable intelligence from the Fusion Center to field personnel. This information flow provides for increased safety and security for fire department personnel as well as the communities served.”
The Department of Homeland Security’s Office for Interoperability and Compatibility (OIC) launched the Computer‐Aided Dispatch (CAD) Interoperability Project (CADIP) in May 2007. CAD systems, which dispatch emergency services and assist 9‐1‐1 operators and dispatchers in handling and prioritizing requests for resources, serve as a major component in responding to critical incidents. CADIP addresses an issue that today’s emergency response agencies may face: CAD systems that are not linked across jurisdictions and, as a result, have difficultly responding to multi‐jurisdictional emergencies.
(U//FOUO) DHS and the FBI are concerned about the threat individuals affiliated with al-Shabaab—a radical Islamic extremist group active in Somalia—may pose to the Homeland, including locations and events of political significance, such as the upcoming Presidential Inauguration. DHS and FBI continue to monitor all reporting to establish the credibility of this threat; however, information concerning the threat is limited.
The United States has more than 46,000 shopping malls nationwide, ranging in size from small open-air neighborhood “strip” shopping centers containing fewer than 10,000 square feet (ft2) of store area to super-regional malls with more than 1 million ft2.
(U//FOUO) Many innocuous reasons exist for the possession of some types of biological agents and associated laboratory equipment. For example, hobby, educational, or artistic uses such as home brewing or pilot-scale biotechnology research may include the same or similar equipment used in the malicious production of pathogens (see Figure). In some instances, however, the presence of a biological laboratory at an unconventional site could be an indicator of possible intent or capability to conduct bioterrorism.
(U//FOUO) The Intelligence Community currently has no specific, credible intelligence indicating that domestic or international terrorist organizations intend to use Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) or Vehicle-Borne Improvised Explosive Devices (VBIEDs) against targets within the Homeland. However, both foreign and domestic terrorist groups continue to use IEDs/VBIEDs as a frequently employed method of attack, and in particular, the frequency of lethal IED incidents overseas is cause for continuing concern.
(U//FOUO) Terrorists could use the explosive Triacetone Triperoxide (TATP), also referred to as acetone peroxide, in an attack against the United States. In December 2001, British shoe-bomber Richard Reid tried to detonate an explosive device with TATP as the initiator while aboard a flight from Paris to Miami. TATP can be made from hydrogen peroxide, acetone, and sulfuric acid. These ingredients are commonly available from drug stores, hardware stores, and car batteries. TATP is extremely sensitive to impact, friction, static/sparks, and heat, and may react violently to drug field testing.
(U//FOUO) DHS Protective Security Coordination Division, March 31, 2010.
(U//FOUO) HITRAC Homeland Security Threat Overview, October 2007.
(U//FOUO) The Homeland Infrastructure Threat and Risk Analysis Center (HITRAC) produces Infrastructure Protection Notes to provide information on risks impacting the critical infrastructure community including terrorist threats, natural hazards, and other events. This IP Note is a joint publication of the DHS Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) Homeland Counterterrorism Division and the Office of Infrastructure Protection (IP), and is designed to
promote security awareness and to identify actions that the critical infrastructure community can take to mitigate risks to the Nation’s critical infrastructure. As an update to the 26 May 2010 IP Note: Preparing for an Evolving Terrorist Threat, this IP Note serves as a reminder for the critical infrastructure community to remain vigilant during the 4 July 2010 Independence Day holiday.
DHS and DOJ officials have announced a new partnership to provide leadership for enhanced development of the Global Justice XML Data Model as a base for the deployment of the National Information Exchange Model (NIEM). NIEM will provide enhanced capabilities for organizations to share data across federal, state, local and tribal lines. This paper gives an overview of the National Information Exchange Model (NIEM). It outlines the background, concepts, objectives and the development strategy for implementing NIEM.
(U//FOUO) Rudimentary improvised explosive devices (IEDs) using pressure cookers to contain the initiator, switch, and explosive charge (typically ammonium nitrate or RDX) frequently have been used in Afghanistan, India, Nepal, and Pakistan. Pressure cookers are common in these countries, and their presence probably would not seem out of place or suspicious to passersby or authorities. Because they are less common in the United States, the presence of a pressure cooker in an unusual location such as a building lobby or busy street corner should be treated as suspicious.