Homeland Security Blog

DHS and NIST Offer Guidance on Quantum Security Risks

October 4, 2021
Posted by George I. Seffers
Quantum computing advances in the coming years are expected to offer benefits while also posting a threat to national security. Guidance offered by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Institute of Standards and Technology is designed to mitigate that threat. Credit: graphicINmotion/Shutterstock

“Quantum computing will be a scientific breakthrough. It is also expected to pose new data privacy and cybersecurity risks.”—Alejando Mayorkas, secretary of homeland security.

DHS Testing Shows Masks Complicate Racial Picture on Facial Recognition

August 26, 2021
By Shaun Waterman
A facial recognition tablet takes a photo of a passenger boarding an international flight during the Sept 2018 launch of a U.S. Customs and Border Protection biometric exit pilot at Dulles International Airport in Virginia. U.S. CBP Photo by Glenn Fawcett

The best facial recognition systems work very well but showed increased racial disparities in performance when the volunteer subjects wore face masks.

Technology Helps Ensure There’s No Safe Harbor for War Criminals

August 24, 2021
By Shaun Waterman
An HSI investigator works with facial recognition software. Photo courtesy U.S. ICE

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has sought to harness the power of innovation to identify perpetrators who might be in, or be traveling to, America.

Introducing the Joint Cyber Defense Collaborative

August 5, 2021
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
U.S. Cyber Command cyber warriors and a French cyber professional collaborate during a July 21 training exercise, Cyber Fort III, at Fort George G. Meade, Maryland. The Command, along with federal agencies such as the FBI, NSA, DOD and the Department of Justice, will be collaborating with the new Joint Cyber Defense Collaborative to broaden U.S. cyber defenses. Credit: U.S. Cyber Command/Josef Cole

The Department of Homeland Security’s CISA forms new cyber defense organization.

U.S. and EU To Collaborate Against Ransomware

June 24, 2021
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas (c), speaking to European Union counterparts in Portugal on June 21 during the U.S.-E.U. Ministerial Meeting of Justice and Home Affairs, has announced that the Department of Homeland Security and the EU will form a working group to examine ransomware attacks. Credit: DHS

The organizations are forming a working group to strengthen ties in the fight against adversarial cyber activity.

Atlantic Council Releases Report on the Geopolitical Impacts of Emerging Technologies

May 26, 2021
By Kimberly Underwood
Atlantic Council researchers emphasize that the technological revolution, which shows no sign of stopping, will reshape societies and geopolitics “in novel and even unanticipated ways.” Credit: Shutterstock/Yurchanka Siarhei

The United States must take action now if it wants to “a freer, more secure and more prosperous world” in a decade.

NIST Develops Prototypical Radio

April 12, 2021
Posted by: George I. Seffers
A prototypical radio developed by NIST researchers helps fill a gap for first responders between push-to-talk radios and cellphones. Credit: Glenn Highcove/Shutterstock

Many of the 4.6 million U.S. public safety personnel still use traditional analog radios, in part because of the high cost of transitioning to cellphone technology.

DHS Awards Contract for Biological Threat Data

April 5, 2021
Posted by: George I. Seffers
The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate has awarded a contract to Mesur.io to use its Earthstream platform to provide data on potential biological threats, including pathogens. Credit: Fotomay/Shutterstock

The Mesur.io will adapt the Earthstream Platform to provide data that tracks metrics related to an outbreak or emergence to predict risks of a biological threat.

App Aids in Emergencies

March 8, 2021
Posted by Maryann Lawlor
This innovative GPS capability takes into consideration the special needs of emergency vehicles, including size and required turning radius.

An innovative navigation app addresses first responders’ special vehicle requirements to help them find the best route.

U.S. Coast Guard Adds Assets to Indo-Pacific Region

March 3, 2021
By Kimberly Underwood
The newly commissioned National Security Cutter Midgett conducts sea trials on February 25. The U.S. Coast Guard needs to be more nimble in the Pacific region. Credit: U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters photo courtesy of Huntington Ingalls Industries, The U.S. Coast Guard is facing additional challenges, especially in the Pacific, says Vice Adm. Linda Fagan (l), USCG, Coast Guard Pacific Area commander, pictured presenting Rear Adm. Kevin Lunday, commander, Coast Guard 14th District, with a Legion of Merit award during a ceremony on the U.S. Coast Guard Base Honolulu, Hawaii, in June 2020. Credit: U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Sara Muir

The maritime service faces “unprecedented threats” in the region.

Criminal Cryptocurrency Is Not Small Change

February 16, 2021
By Maryann Lawlor
Credit: Aleona/Shutterstock

Like the rest of society, felons are using the latest technology not only to steal cash but also to launder it.

Israel-U.S. Binational Industrial Research and Development Foundation Announces Awards

January 14, 2021
Posted by: Julianne Simpson
Credit: Shutterstock/sdecoret

The Israel-U.S. Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation announced awards for two collaborative projects.

DHS Test Shows Biometrics Work With Face Masks

January 5, 2021
Posted by: George I. Seffers
Biometrics systems tested by the Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology (S&T) Directorate effectively identify most individuals even when they wear face masks. Credit: SergeyTinyakov/Shutterstock

The Biometric Technology Rally evaluated the ability of biometric systems and matching algorithms to reliably collect and match images of individuals wearing an array of face masks. 

DHS Launches Startup Studio 2021

December 11, 2020
Posted by: George I. Seffers
The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate has announced the launch of a Startup Studio designed to rapidly field commercial technologies.  Photo courtesy of Department of Homeland Security

The Homeland Security Startup Studio is designed to accelerate and deliver commercial applications of technologies to meet homeland security needs. 

Small Business Can Win Big

December 2, 2020
By Maryann Lawlor
The TSA awarded Lavi Industries a sole-source small business contract for acrylic barriers and associated equipment at 37 airports throughout the United States in August 2020.

TSA's Small Business Program takes pride in finding and working with entrepreneurs and offers the tools they need to succeed.

TSA Shares Business Opportunities Tips

November 23, 2020
By Maryann Lawlor
Donald Pekoske (l), administrator, Transportation Security Administration, speaks with Federal Air Marshal’s Executive Assistant Administrator Michael Ondocin at the TSA 23rd virtual employee town hall meeting. Credit: TSA photo

The Transportation Security Administration offers industry numerous new ways to provide both standard and innovative solutions to improve traveler and workforce safety.

Defense Depends on Total Transport

October 23, 2020
By Maryann Lawlor
U.S. Marines assigned to 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing offload equipment from the aviation logistic ship S.S. Wright during Exercise Trident Juncture 18 at Orkanger Port, Norway. The exercise enhances the U.S. and NATO Allies’ and partners’ abilities to work together collectively to conduct military operations under challenging conditions. Credit: U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Cody J. Ohira, Airmen from the 37th Airlift Squadron and 86th Logistics Readiness Squadron load a low-cost low-altitude drop into a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft as the flight crew prepares for a night-time training mission during 2021 Aviation Detachment Rotation at 33rd Air Base near Powidz, Poland. The LCLA drop contents would consist of supplies or equipment for a small subset of units. Credit: U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kristof J. Rixmann

Ensuring the mobility of troops and support equipment in the European theater will depend on coordinated command and control.

Preparations Incomplete for Next U.S. Disaster

October 15, 2020
By Robert K. Ackerman
(Clockwise from upper left) Webinar moderator James FX Payne, James P. Craft, Asha M. George, Scott Charney, David Bray and Steve Shirley discuss the findings and recommendations of the AFCEA Cyber Committee's White Paper "COVID-19 Compels Better NSEP Planning."

A panel of experts describes the steps outlined in an AFCEA white paper to build better national emergency preparedness.

The National Security Implications of Climate Change

September 18, 2020
By Kimberly Underwood
Climate change and the damage it inflicts have profound implications to national security, experts say. Credit: Shutterstock/Sepp Photography, Near-peer adversaries are looking to take advantage in the Arctic region, enabling by ice melt and thinning due to climate change. Credit:Shutterstock/Alexey Seafarer

Risk to the U.S. military and the nation abound from direct and indirect weather impacts as well as from near-peer adversary actions.

Pandemic Shifts Workforce Indefinitely

September 16, 2020
By Maryann Lawlor
Bryan Ware (top l) and Jeff Reed (bottom) discussed some of the global shifts in cybersecurity requirements. The two shared their observations during a panel moderated by Jon Check, cyber protection solutions, intelligence and space unit, Raytheon, during the Billington Cybersecurity Summit.

COVID-19 has done more than increase hand-washing and mask-wearing. It has meant an entirely new way of communicating and collaborating.