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border protection

Situational Awareness for Border Security

October 7, 2014
By George I. Seffers

House Homeland Security Committee chair proposes technology mix for securing the southern border.

DHS Faces Challenges in Move to Mobile

February 27, 2013
By George I. Seffers

Although the Department of Homeland Security is eyeing mobile technologies, the organization faces a number of challenges, revealed Shawn Lapinski, the chief interoperable architect for Department of Homeland Security Joint Wireless Program Office within the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency, speaking at Wednesday's panel on mobile communications for homeland security at AFCEA's Homeland Security conference. 

DHS has a lot of interest in wireless broadband, in part, because the department has a number of law enforcement organizations that were brought together under one roof, bringing their individual networks with them. DHS maintains almost 20 independent networks with 120,000 tactical communications users across the nation. “We are talking about a number of law enforcement components inside of DHS trying to play together in the same sandbox,” Lapinski pointed out.

Much of that network technology was developed about two decades ago, Lapinski said, and it presents operational challenges. Many items are past their life expectancy. “Even though we are going through a modernization program, the standards were created almost 18 years ago, and when you’re playing catch-up after a decade and a half, you’re still a decade and a half behind,” he said. “Our coverage capacity, encryption issues and things we can share with partners at both the state and federal levels are impacted based upon the systems. Some of our systems still cannot offer compliant P25 capability.”

Australia Extends Maritime Surveillance Contract with Cobham

October 31, 2012
George I. Seffers

Cobham has reached agreement with the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service to extend the existing Sentinel aerial maritime surveillance contract by 2 years, the company recently announced. This £105 million ($22,580,000) contract extension secures the contract until the end of 2021. Cobham Aviation Services has been protecting Australia’s borders since 1995 under a performance based service contract involving the full turnkey operation of 10 highly modified Bombardier Dash 8 maritime patrol aircraft that fly 2,500 missions and 15,000 hours each year.
 

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