• Gun owners are more politically active: study

    American gun owners in recent years have exhibited higher levels of political participation, not only in voting but in donating money to candidates and contacting elected officials, according to a new study. “Part of the reason majority opinions on gun control legislation aren’t turning into policy is that gun owners are a very strong political group who hold a lot of weight and hold a lot of influence despite being a minority in American politics,” said one researcher.

  • New technology may help police tackle emergencies at public events

    Medical emergencies for fans during athletic events can quickly turn into life-or-death situations. Researchers are using technology to help police monitor emergency and public safety information on game day. “Police departments and first responders can use the social media posts to reach people in need of assistance, including medical emergencies, disaster emergencies or criminal activity. During the start of football season, it can be used to find fans having heat-related medical issues,” says one researcher.

  • Global gun deaths reach 250,000 annually: Study

    A study conducted by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) has found that there are a quarter of a million gun deaths globally yearly. It says gun deaths are “a major public health problem for humanity.” The JAMA study notes that of the 250,000 annul gun deaths, almost two-thirds were homicides. The United States, home to 4 percent of the world’s population, accounted for more than a third of its gun suicides in 2016.

  • The first line of defense against acts of targeted violence

    Tragic events at the Boston Marathon, African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, and Pulse nightclub in Orlando remind us that ideologically motivated violent extremists pose a persistent threat to Americans of all backgrounds. Our first defense against attacks is grounded in our understanding and response to terrorism within our country. While the ideologies that support acts of targeted violence are diverse, so too are our responses and prevention activities.

  • Better integration of big data, ICT in disaster response

    A comprehensive review of studies of the use of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and big data in disaster response, identified some important gaps: more information is needed on the use of technologies. Most articles discussed the use of ICT in natural disasters which were mainly hurricanes and earthquakes. What was underreported was data on extreme temperatures and flooding, even though these events account for 27 percent and 26 percent of global deaths respectively.

  • Germany creates cybersecurity R&D agency

    The German government today (Wednesday) announced the creation of a new federal agency to develop cutting-edge cyber defense technology. The agency would resemble the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which is credited with developing the early internet and GPS. The German agency, unlike DARPA, will focus on cyber defense ad cyber protection. DARPA’s range of defense-related research and development is much broader.

  • Blocked from giving away 3D-printed gun blueprints, Texas man says he's selling them instead

    An Austin resident and self-described “crypto-anarchist” said Tuesday he’ll begin selling blueprints that would allow users to 3D print their own plastic guns — a day after a federal judge extended a temporary block preventing him from making the plans available on the web for free. In other words: If he can’t be the “Napster” of crypto-guns, he’ll be the “iTunes,” Wilson told reporters at a press conference Tuesday in Austin.

  • Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo partly caused by Indonesian volcanic eruption

    Electrically charged volcanic ash short-circuited Earth’s atmosphere in 1815, causing global poor weather and Napoleon’s defeat, says new research. Historians know that rainy and muddy conditions helped the Allied army defeat the French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte at the Battle of Waterloo. The June 1815 event changed the course of European history. Two months prior, a volcano named Mount Tambora erupted on the Indonesian island of Sumbawa, killing 100,000 people and plunging the Earth into a ‘year without a summer’ in 1816.

  • Disproportionate killing of black men by police

    Bad policing, bad law, not “bad apples”: Killings of unarmed black men by white police officers across the nation have garnered massive media attention in recent years, raising the question: Do white law enforcement officers target minority suspects? An extensive, new national study reveals some surprising answers. Analysis of every use of deadly force by police officers across the United States indicates that the killing of black suspects is a police problem, not a white police problem, and the killing of unarmed suspects of any race is extremely rare.

  • Militarization of police fails to enhance safety, may damage police reputation

    This month marks the four-year anniversary of protests over the police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, an incident met with a heavily armed police response that stoked widespread concern. While proponents say militarized police units enhance officer safety and prevent violence, critics argue these tactics are targeted at racial minorities, and diminish trust between citizens and law enforcement.

  • Three reasons the U.S. is not ready for the next pandemic

    In the midst of a pandemic, decisions must be made quickly. Quick decision-making can often be hindered by the absence of high-level leadership. The need for high-level leadership, coordination and a new strategy are essential to mitigate the threat of pandemics, but these fundamental pandemic preparedness gaps persist. The next great pandemic is coming. The true question is: Will we be ready when it does? Right now, that answer is no, because the country lacks the sufficient safeguards we have outlined. But if the United States chooses to elevate the issue of pandemic preparedness and biosecurity as a national security priority, we could be. Outbreaks are inevitable, but pandemics are not if we take action now.

  • Making electronic documents more trustworthy

    Today, the expeditious delivery of electronic documents, messages, and other data is relied on for everything from communications to navigation. As the near instantaneous exchange of information has increased in volume, so has the variety of electronic data formats–from images and videos to text and maps. Verifying the trustworthiness and provenance of this mountain of electronic information is an exceedingly difficult task – especially since the software used to process electronic data is error-prone and vulnerable to exploitation through maliciously crafted data inputs, opening the technology and its underlying systems to compromise.

  • Black Americans are still victims of hate crimes more than any other group

    James Byrd Jr., who was dragged to death in Texas 20 years ago, became one of the namesakes for a 2009 federal law expanding hate crime legislation. But just 100 hate crimes have been pursued by federal prosecutors between January 2010 and July 2018.

  • WiFi can detect weapons, bombs, chemicals in bags

    Ordinary WiFi can easily detect weapons, bombs and explosive chemicals in bags at museums, stadiums, theme parks, schools and other public venues, according to a new study. Researchers  demonstrated how this low-cost technology could help security screening at public venues like stadiums, theme parks and schools.

  • New first-responder safety, efficiency systems on the way

    Two homeland security technologies will be developed jointly by American and Israeli companies to increase the safety and efficiency of first-responders — law enforcement, firefighters and emergency medical services —  after getting funding from the Israel-U.S. Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation. The technologies will build advanced technologies for victim location and radio communication.