Homeland Security

January 2002
By Robert K. Ackerman

Searching for weapons of mass destruction spawns spin-offs that can serve homeland security.

While analysts now are keeping a sharper eye on possible weapons proliferation, some of the technologies they employ may play an increasingly important role in maintaining homeland security. In the wake of the September 11 attacks on the United States, experts charged with detecting overseas programs to develop weapons of mass destruction are refocusing their efforts on a new list of nations that pose more immediate threats.

February 2002
By Maryann Lawlor

Defense Emergency Preparedness Moves Into Cyberspace.

Technology is liberating the U.S. Defense Department from the chains of a single location by enabling it to become a network-centric department. The initiative to create a virtual Pentagon calls for taking advantage of advances in networking, Internet protocol, videoconferencing, mass storage and data transmitting technologies. These capabilities would allow military personnel to continue to collaborate and communicate in emergency situations even if systems within the Pentagon are damaged.

October 2004
By Cheryl Lilie

The Joint Protection Enterprise Network (JPEN) allows gate officers to document suspicious or repetitive activity such as a vehicle that has been denied base entry. Once the information is entered, personnel at nearby bases can be notified immediately to be on the lookout for the same vehicle.
Web-based network provides situational awareness across military installations.

October 2004
By Robert K. Ackerman

The U.S. Northern Command’s (NORTHCOM’s) situational awareness room monitors a range of conditions across the United States. The command must incorporate threat intelligence from overseas combatant commands with reports on domestic concerns such as natural disasters to carry out its homeland missions.
Intelligence, information sharing require different approaches.

April 2002
By Robert K. Ackerman

The attacks on the United States have opened a new Pandora’s box of terrorism.

Networked terror groups, domestic radicals, renegade states and terror for profit all threaten Western democracies to an unprecedented degree. Prospective targets might be high-profile infrastructure assets with the potential for high casualty totals, or they might simply take the form of attacks on public institutions to rapidly erode confidence in governments.

April 2002
By Robert K. Ackerman

Cold War constructs are ill-suited for anti-terrorist warfare.

As successful as operation Enduring Freedom has been on the battlefields of Afghanistan, the lack of organizational reform in domestic U.S. agencies threatens the battle on the war’s other front—the United States. Despite increased security measures and the heightened state of alert on the part of the public, the country is still highly vulnerable to further attacks by terrorists.

May 2002
By Patrick S. Guarnieri

Web-enabled techniques help prepare reaction to weapons of mass destruction.

May 2002
By Kyle A. Gerlitz

System allows armed forces to share the bandwidth wealth with emergency personnel.

A recently developed technology will allow military and local community first responders to take advantage of all available communications assets. The gateway-bridging equipment provides interoperability between commercial and military networks. Specialized military network cards support the connectivity to tactical equipment, allowing commercial traffic to travel over those assets.

June 2002
By Robert K. Ackerman

Command and communications no longer are a military exclusive.

Emergency responders to civilian crises soon may have the same command, control and communications capabilities that the armed forces use on the battlefield. Long-tested military communications technologies are being combined with state-of-the-art civilian systems to provide emergency communications when accidents, natural disasters or terrorist attacks damage or overwhelm an existing communications infrastructure.

July 2002
By Henry S. Kenyon

Secure communications offers flexibility, information sharing.

Civilian disaster response personnel soon will employ secure electronic messaging to communicate with U.S. government agencies and military services. The mobile system enables emergency management personnel to contact and coordinate operations quickly with other federal entities in the event of an emergency or terrorist attack.

September 2004
By Maryann Lawlor

October 2002
By Maj. Karlton D. Johnson, USAF

Cooperation essential to new cyberprotection model.

Businesses and the U.S. military have between them a multitude of information assurance programs to protect against cyberattacks; however, a recent research project reveals significant gaps in national policies, procedures and relationships that must be addressed to ensure success. As the United States becomes more dependent on technology and near-real-time data, information operations are evolving into a critical national security matter that requires a joint approach.

November 2002
By Henry S. Kenyon

Government and military departments train together for seamless information sharing.

U.S. civilian emergency management and law enforcement agencies are becoming increasingly capable of interoperating with the U.S. Defense Department. By enhancing communications and computer networking systems, organizations are readying themselves for flexible multiagency and multiservice joint operations in the event of a natural or man-made disaster.

December 2001
By Robert K. Ackerman

Orbital eye spies serve multiple roles.

The U.S. National Imagery and Mapping Agency is purchasing commercial remote sensing imagery, some under exclusive use agreements, to support operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. Applications can range from mission planning and rehearsal to battle damage assessment and humanitarian airdrops.

February 2003
By Robert K. Ackerman

No clear pattern yet has emerged to current and future expenditures.

More than 16 months after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, U.S. government spending on homeland security has yet to settle into a predictable routine. Tens of billions of dollars have been allocated to domestic and foreign operations aimed at deterring, preventing or recovering from terrorist activities. Some of these appropriations have funded startup programs that promise long-term benefits, while others support long-extant efforts that are the only options available for immediate action in the war on terrorism.

February 2003
By Maryann Lawlor

Firms join forces to provide integrated solutions.

Corporate America is helping assemble the homeland defense jigsaw puzzle that includes thousands of pieces being put together by hundreds of people looking at a multitude of different pictures. Industry leaders agree that the biggest challenge is the complexity of the problem and the plethora of solutions being proposed by companies with a range of specialties taking widely varying approaches.

February 2003
By Henry S. Kenyon

Business dealings will change with the U.S. government’s biggest structural revamp in 50 years.

The major consolidation of federal agencies that is creating the new Department of Homeland Security also is impelling private industry to adapt to the changing landscape. The resulting environment places more responsibility on businesses to protect vital infrastructure, but it also clears the way to a closer and more productive relationship between the commercial and public sectors.

April 2003
By James Stiefvater

Increased threat brings information exchange capability to forefront.

Rapidly deployable, reliable and secure communications are helping sort through the inherent communications chaos surrounding emergency situations. The technology was instrumental in providing communications capabilities after the terrorist attacks and also was useful in debris recovery operations after the space shuttle Columbia disaster.

August 2004
By James Careless

Law enforcement and emergency personnel use the Incident Commanders Radio Interface to link disparate radio systems.
Manportable system allows emergency personnel with disparate communications systems to connect.

May 2003
By Henry S. Kenyon and Maryann Lawlor

In the 18 months following the terrorist attacks, the U.S. government has undergone a series of structural changes. At the state and federal levels, efforts are underway to enhance communications and information-sharing infrastructures among agencies and other organizations. Public institutions also have reached out to the private sector to form partnerships designed to protect vital national infrastructures.