This Joint Intelligence Bulletin provides information on the devices used in the 15 April 2013 Boston Marathon explosions. The information is intended to provide aid in identifying devices and to support the activities of DHS and FBI and to assist federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government counterterrorism and first responder officials and the private sector to deter, prevent, preempt, or respond to terrorist attacks in the United States.
This is an update of an RCR published on 1 July 2010. Rudimentary improvised explosive devices (IEDs) using pressure cookers to contain the initiator, switch, and explosive charge 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. Presence in an unusual location—or if noticed in a contanier such as a backpack—should be treated as suspicious.
Defending U.S. territory and the people of the United States is the highest priority of the Department of Defense (DoD), and providing appropriate defense support of civil authorities (DSCA) is one of the Department’s primary missions. This Strategy for Homeland Defense and Defense Support of Civil Authorities orients the Department towards an increasingly complex strategic environment. It emphasizes innovative approaches, greater integration, deepening of external partnerships, and increased effectiveness and efficiencies in DoD’s homeland activities. It applies the vital capabilities of the Total Force – in the Active and Reserve Components – to make the nation more secure and resilient. Finally, the Strategy guides future decisions on homeland defense and civil support issues consistent with the Defense Strategic Guidance and the Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR).
The FBI assesses with high confidence recreationally used exploding targets (ETs), commonly referred to as tannerite, or reactive targets, can be used as an explosive for illicit purposes by criminals and extremists and explosive precursor chemicals (EPCs) present in ETs can be combined with other materials to manufacture explosives for use in improvised explosive devices (IEDs).
Recent FBI intelligence from multiple FBI HUMINT sources indicates a shift in Los Zetas recruiting methods and reliance on non-traditional associates. Past, accurate FBI reporting indicated Los Zetas previously focused its recruitment on members with prior specialized training, such as ex-military and ex-law enforcement officers, and not on US-based gangs or US persons in order to maintain a highly-disciplined and structured hierarchy. This hierarchy, which resembled a military-style command and control structure, facilitated drug trafficking operations and maintained lines of authority. However, current FBI reporting indicates that Los Zetas is recruiting and relying on non-traditional, non-military trained associates—US-based prison and street gangs and non-Mexican nationals—to perform drug trafficking and support operations in Mexico and in the United States.
(U//FOUO) U.S. Marine Corps Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion Operations in Afghanistan Lessons Learned Report
This report is a continuation of the collection effort on units supporting operations in Afghanistan as directed by the Deputy Commandant for Combat Development and Integration. The collection sought to examine the mission, scope, successes, shortfalls, equipment, manning and emerging issues associated with 4th Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion (4th LAR) operations. Interviews of 28 commanders and staff were conducted at various camps and bases in Afghanistan from December 2009 – April 2010.
This memorandum summarizes the basic payment principles. Title 21 U.S.C. § 876 authorizes the use of administrative subpoenas to obtain information relating to Title 21 investigations. DEA is under no obligation to pay for information provided in response to its issuance of an administrative subpoena unless a separate Federal statute or regulation specifically states that reimbursement is required.
The Department of Defense has issued an instruction clarifying the rules for the involvement of military forces in civilian law enforcement. The instruction establishes “DoD policy, assigns responsibilities, and provides procedures for DoD support to Federal, State, tribal, and local civilian law enforcement agencies, including responses to civil disturbances within the United States.” The new instruction titled “Defense Support of Civilian Law Enforcement Agencies” was released at the end of February, replacing several older directives on military assistance to civilian law enforcement and civil disturbances. The instruction requires that senior DoD officials develop “procedures and issue appropriate direction as necessary for defense support of civilian law enforcement agencies in coordination with the General Counsel of the Department of Defense, and in consultation with the Attorney General of the United States”, including “tasking the DoD Components to plan for and to commit DoD resources in response to requests from civil authorities for [civil disturbance operations].” Military officials are to coordinate with “civilian law enforcement agencies on policies to further DoD cooperation with civilian law enforcement agencies” and the heads of the combatant commands are instructed to issue procedures for “establishing local contact points in subordinate commands for purposes of coordination with Federal, State, tribal, and local civilian law enforcement officials.”
Establishes DoD policy, assigns responsibilities, and provides procedures for DoD support to Federal, State, tribal, and local civilian law enforcement agencies, including responses to civil disturbances within the United States, including the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and any territory or possession of the United States or any other political subdivision thereof in accordance with DoDD 3025.18 (Reference (c)).
Expressed or implied threats by an individual or a group communicating intent to commit acts of terrorism or violence or advocating violence against a person, population, or to damage or destroy a facility can be an indicator of pre-operational attack planning. For example, in 2010 a Virginia-based US person pled guilty to communicating threats after he posted a video to the Internet encouraging violent extremists to attack the creators of a television show, including highlighting their residence and urging online readers to “pay them a visit.” He also admitted to soliciting others to desensitize law enforcement by placing suspicious looking but innocent packages in public places, which could then be followed up by real explosives.
A 2009 document from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Department of Defense creating performance standards for “successful” and “outstanding” employee performance within the U.S. intelligence community.
Technical specifications released by the Qatari Ministry of Interior for CCTV surveillance cameras that are required in all the mentioned categories of businesses operating in Qatar including hotels, apartments, banks, shopping centers, hospitals and warehouses.
The Canadian Forces (CF) is organized, equipped and trained to defend Canada and, in cooperation with Canada’s allies, protect and advance Canada’s interests in the world community. While the CF focuses on its purely military tasks, the inherent flexibility of military units, many with unique capabilities, makes the CF a potential source of assistance which may be called upon to support Canadian civil authorities and the Canadian public in Canada. CF domestic operations are any CF activities which provide assistance in response to requests for support from Canadian civil authorities, or from the Canadian public.
This bilateral plan provides a framework for military forces of one nation to support military forces of the other nation that are providing military support of civil authorities. The focus of this document is the unique, bilateral military planning considerations required to align our respective national military plans to respond quickly to national requests for military support of civil authorities. Nothing in this plan prevents either nation from responding unilaterally; rather, this plan will facilitate unity of effort, if and when requests for bilateral support are received.
This After Action Report/Improvement Plan covers the public health response in Washington to the disaster in Japan that began with the earthquake off of Japan’s northeastern coast on March 11, 2011. The 9.0 earthquake caused widespread devastation throughout Japan, and the resulting tsunami crippled the nation even further. The Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant, located in Fukushima Prefecture of Japan, was severely damaged by the earthquake and tsunami, creating a radiological disaster. The tsunami from the earthquake also made landfall across the Pacific Ocean including coastal areas of Washington state. The radiological release at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant was due to the loss of cooling capability in the reactor cores, causing a partial melt down of nuclear fuel, a buildup of hydrogen gas in containment that had to be vented, and resulting explosions that caused radioactivity from damaged fuel to enter the atmosphere and be carried by the jet stream to the Pacific Northwest. For the state of Washington, responding to potential public health and medical impacts of both the tsunami and radiation issues from the earthquake in Japan culminated in many lessons learned— strengths as well as areas in need of improvement. Those lessons learned are captured in this after action report.
The Oregon response to the Japan Radiation Event was a real-time response triggered by the Tohuku Earthquake and Tsunami of March 11, 2011. Damage caused by the tsunami to the Oregon coast did not necessitate a state Public Health response. Rather, state PH focused primarily on the health and medical informational needs of the public, public health and medical partners and other state agencies and tribes. OPHD initially responded in an ad hoc manner. It was subsequently determined that a more effective approach would be to establish an Incident Management Team and activate the Agency Operations Center, which were accomplished on 16 March and 21 March respectively. Agency Operations Center and Public Health Information Center operations worked well, with enhanced cooperation demonstrated in message development and interaction with the media. Use of HAN, links on the OHA website to FAQs and statistical data, rapid translation of messages into 6 languages, teleconferences with LHDs, tribes, PIOs and Region X Federal and state partners and Oregon Emergency Management facilitated calls with sister state agencies resulted in consistent information being provided. The major deficiency in the process was the lack of clarity and responsiveness from the national headquarters of federal agencies (EPA, FDA).
Stolen, cloned, or repurposed commercial or official vehicles—such as police cars, ambulances, and public utility service trucks—have been used in terrorist attacks. These vehicles could facilitate terrorist access to restricted and hardened targets as well as to emergency scenes. The use of these vehicles can provide individuals the ability to approach targets to conduct pre-operational surveillance or carry out primary attacks or secondary attacks against first responders.
A DHS presentation from March 11, 2013 regarding the implementation of Executive Order 13636 “Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity” authored by the Cyber-Dependent Infrastructure Identification Working Group (CDIIWG).
Several sets of presentation slides for talks given by Ira A. “Gus” Hunt, the CIA’s Chief Technology Officer, on the topic of “big data” and cloud computing. A recent presentation given by Hunt at the GigaOM Structure:Data conference last week garnered significant attention for his discussion of the CIA’s desire to “collect everything and hang on to it forever.” Hunt’s presentation was similar to several he has given before, many of which share the same slides, including one which states: “It is really very nearly within our grasp to be able to compute on all human generated information.”
This guidance is to provide direction to any police force or other law enforcement authority regarding the retention and use of biometric material for national security purposes through the making or renewing of a national security determination.
The U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI) is warning military personnel to avoid becoming victims of online sextortion scams using “sexual images (obtained either through enticement or malicious code)” to extort money from unsuspecting victims. “Cyber sextortion” is described as a growing problem among the military services with incidents being reported by “all Military Criminal Investigative Organizations” involving service members located at bases all over the world. The AFOSI report, released in February on a restricted basis, was recently posted online on the document-sharing website Scribd.
This Special Product was produced in response to reports of Department of Defense (DoD) personnel becoming victims of internet-based extortion scams known as sextortion. Its purpose is to inform United States Air Force (USAF) personnel of this new online scam and offer mitigating steps that can reduce the chances of becoming a victim.
This guide offers recommendations for local outreach campaigns, explains how to effectively develop and disseminate messages in order to help the public better understand their role in reporting suspicious activity, and helps law enforcement agencies and community partners to understand, navigate, and use the many resources available to help build and sustain local efforts. New technologies, resources, and innovative practices highlighted within this document can be used to improve the education, communication, and trust amongst communities and law enforcement agencies who serve them. With the proper tools and knowledge, individuals and entire communities will help law enforcement agencies identify, investigate, and prevent crime and terrorism.
GAO Report: Increasing the Effectiveness of Efforts to Share Terrorism-Related Suspicious Activity Reports
The Department of Justice (DOJ) has largely implemented the Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative among fusion centers—entities that serve as the focal point within a state for sharing and analyzing suspicious activity reports and other threat information. The state and local law enforcement officials GAO interviewed generally said the initiative’s processes worked well, but that they could benefit from additional feedback from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on how the reports they submit are used. The FBI has a feedback mechanism, but not all stakeholders were aware of it. Implementing formalized feedback mechanisms as part of the initiative could help stakeholders conduct accurate analyses of terrorism-related information, among other things.
The National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) is warning law enforcement and first responders that urban exploration, an activity that involves trying to gain access to restricted or abandoned man-made structures, can provide useful information for terrorists conducting surveillance of a potential target. Also known as “building hacking”, urban exploration has been around in its modern form for decades, tracing some its more recent history to post-war exploration of the Parisian catacombs and members of MIT’s Tech Model Railroad Club Signals and Power Subcommittee, who organized explorations of steam tunnels and rooftops around campus in the late 1950s.