• Home-grown terrorism

    The U.S. Secret Service says it has intercepted two suspicious packages with “possible explosive devices,” one of them addressed to former President Barack Obama and the other to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Within hours, the Time Warner Center in New York, where news network CNN has studios, was evacuated Wednesday morning after a suspicious device was found in the mail room there.

  • Hate

    The New York police said that a package containing an explosive device has been found in a mailbox outside the New York residence of billionaire financier George Soros. Soros, a Hungary-born billionaire, has become one of the world’s biggest funder of politically and socially liberal groups and causes. He has become a hate figure for right-wing movements in the United States and eastern Europe, and the target of a hostile, even anti-Semitic media and political campaign by the nationalist government of Victor Orban in his native Hungary.

  • Hate

    ADL has released a new report that examines the current state of white supremacy. The report is a deep dive into the forces behind this extremist ideology — from the emergence of the alt right to the ongoing threat posed by more established elements of the movement.

  • Patterns of violence

    New Research predicts reliable patterns in violent events occurring within wars and terrorism, regardless of geography, ethnicity and religion. The researchers can predict with reasonably accuracy the mixtures of events of different sizes, for example, the number of events killing 10 or more people compared to the number of events killing 20 or more people.  

  • Terrorism & health

    The children of mothers exposed to terror attacks during pregnancy are 2.5 times more likely to develop schizophrenia than mothers not to exposed to terror during pregnancy. This was the finding of a comprehensive new study. “It is possible that the psychosocial stress of terror attacks in the mothers occurred during a critical period of fetal brain development. Insults during such a critical period of neurodevelopment were so potent that years later the risk of schizophrenia increased.” explained Prof. Stephen Levine, one of the authors of the study.

  • Biowarfare

    Owing to present-day armed conflicts, the general public is well aware of the terrifying effects of chemical weapons. Meanwhile, the effects of biological weapons have largely disappeared from public awareness. A project funded by a research agency of the U.S. Department of Defense is now giving rise to concerns about being possibly misused for the purpose of biological warfare.

  • Terrorism

    Germany’s intelligence services thwarted a 2016 Islamic State attack. A German couple traveled to Syria to try to send teams of militants back to Germany. The woman, a German convert to Islam, tried to recruit women in northern Germany to marry IS members so that they could be granted permission to enter Germany. One of the women she contacted was an informer for the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), Germany’s domestic intelligence agency, and she alerted authorities.

  • Conspiracy theories

    Hungarian Jewish billionaire, philanthropist and Holocaust survivor George Soros is widely recognized for funding progressive political and social causes, usually through grants made by his Open Society Foundations. As a result, Soros has become a lightning rod for conservative and right-wing groups who object to his funding of liberal causes.

  • Surveillance

    People often say that they never forget a face, but for some people, this claim might actually be true. So-called super recognizers are said to possess exceptional face recognition abilities, often remembering the faces of those they have only briefly encountered or haven’t seen for many years. Their unique skills have even caught the attention of policing and security organizations, who have begun using super recognizers to match photographs of suspects or missing persons to blurry CCTV footage. But recent research shows that the methods used to identify super recognizers are limited, and that the people recruited for this work might not always be as super as initially thought.

  • Terrorism

    An average of 8,338 people died and 10,785 people were injured every year in domestic and international terrorist attacks between 1970 and 2016. Terrorist attacks injure far more people than they kill, leaving victims with lost limbs, hearing loss, respiratory disease, depression and other issues — but little research has measured the impact of that damage beyond the number of people who are hurt.

  • Terrorism

    The United States Senate has unanimously passed a bipartisan bill that would enact sanctions on those who use civilians as human shields as a tactic of war, including terror groups such as Hamas, Hezbollah, Al Qaeda, and ISIS. The bill, called the Sanctioning the Use of Civilians as Defenseless Shields Act, was co-sponsored by 50 other senators.

  • Far Right radicalization

    Could fragmentation within the Far-Right contribute to increasingly extreme responses to Islamist terrorism? There is increasing evidence of instrumental responses from some of the most extreme groups, which seek to encourage the strategic use of violence.

  • Hate

    Terror attacks have helped drive up the number of hate crimes in England and Wales with spikes in the aftermath of incidents, Home Office official figures published today show. The number of offenses recorded by police jumped following the terror attack by Khalid Masood at Westminster last year. Hate crime incidents continued to rise in May and June after terrorists attacked the Manchester Arena and London Bridge. The increases reflect a trend which has been evident for some years.

  • Violence

    Recent evidence of above-average levels of education among genocide perpetrators and terrorists, such as those who carried out the 9/11 attacks, has challenged the consensus among scholars that education has a generally pacifying effect. Is it true that more schooling can promote peaceful behavior and reduce civil conflict and other forms of politically-motivated group violence?

  • Vehicular cyberthreats

    In acts of terrorism, vehicles have been deployed as killing machines. These incidents involved human operators, but another sinister possibility looms: a vehicle cyber hack intended to cause human harm. While this kind of terrorist attack has not yet occurred, in the realm of security research, it’s been demonstrated how hackers could gain control over car systems like the brakes, steering and engine.

  • School safety

    Safety and security technology tests underway at a Jackson County, Alabama school could help keep Alabama’s schoolchildren safer if implemented statewide. Rather than developing an emergency response to an active shooter incident, the project focuses on expanding the perimeter of protection to help ensure interception of a potential shooter. Components of the system also provide law enforcement with enhanced situational information.

  • Insect Allies

    In 2016 DARPA launched the Insect Allies project, budgeting $45 million over four years to transform agricultural pests into vectors that can transfer protective genes into plants within one growing season. Scientists are concerned that such technology might be used for nefarious purposes. In a recent Science article, the scientists note the profound implications of releasing a horizontal environmental genetic alteration agent – implications that touch on regulatory, economic, biological, security, and societal issues.

  • Radicalization

    To understand what leads people into violent extremism, scientists are turning the question on its head and asking why it is that most young people don’t become radicalized.

  • Hezbollah

    The United Kingdom is set to proscribe the Iranian-backed, Lebanese-based terror organization Hezbollah in its entirety. The U.K. outlawed Hezbollah’s “military wing” as a terrorist entity in 2008, but the “political wing” of the organization is not currently restricted.

  • Immigration & terrorism

    A group of former national security officials is pushing back against a controversial Trump administration report on the link between terrorism and immigration, saying the report gives the false impression that immigrants are responsible for the majority of terrorist attacks in the United States.