• Senate may yet add funds to border security before going on recess

    The Senate may yet vote for additional funds for border security before leaving for a month-long recess; Senator Schumer is going to try to push through a bill that provides an additional $600 million for the border; this includes $176 million to hire 1,500 more officers to form a strike force to be deployed in critical areas along the border; Schumer would pay for his measure by raising fees on visas for temporary skilled workers sent to the United States by Indian companies; Republicans, who propose a similar measure, prefer to pay for additional border security by taking unused money from the Obama administration’s economic stimulus program, an idea unacceptable to Democrats

  • Indonesia joins countries mulling BlackBerry ban to fight terror

    Indonesia considers joining a growing list of countries, including India, Saudi Arabia and the UAE in banning BlackBerry devices; Research in Motion is receiving increasing pressure to allow government access to data generated by the hand-held devices

  • TSA enlisting parking attendants and meter maids in anti-terror campaign

    From the 1993 attempt on the Twin towers, to Timothy McVeigh, to Faisal Shahzad, the United States has experience with terrorists using vehicles to carry out their plots; TSA’s First Observer program will roll out lesson plans for workers such as parking attendants and meter maids to help them become the latest anti-terror weapons

  • End to water-boarding: Using brain waves to reading terrorists minds about imminent attacks

    There may soon be no need for water-boarding or other “enhanced interrogation” to extract vital information about pending attacks from captured terrorists or terrorism suspects; Researchers at Northwestern university were able to correlate P300 brain waves to guilty knowledge with 100 percent accuracy in the lab

  • A Qaeda attacks Jordanian port city; 1 killed, 3 hurt

    A Grad rocket exploded early Monday in the Jordanian seaside resort of Aqaba, killing one person and injuring at least three; al Qaeda operatives launched a similar rocket attack on Aqaba on 8 July 2007, in which a Jordanian soldier was killed; one of the targets of the 2007 attack was the USS Ashland, which was docking at the Aqaba port at the time

  • U.K. citizens to be spied on by foreign police

    The U.K. Home Office today signed up to the European Investigation Order (EIO) which, when it is approved by the European Parliament, would allow any police force in Europe to spy on and pursue Britons even for the minor offenses; the power allows prosecutors from any EU country to demand details such as DNA or even bank and phone records on anyone they suspect of a crime as minor as leaving a restaurant without paying the bill

  • Leaked U.S. documents: Pakistan collaborates with the Taliban to kill Americans

    Leaked U.S. military documents offer detailed and disturbing accounts of the degree and scope of the cooperation between Pakistan’s intelligence agency and anti-American forces in Afghanistan; this cooperation comes from an agency of a country that receives more than $1 billion a year in aid from the United States; ISI, the Pakistani secret service, recruits insurgents, trains them, supplies them, helps them choose targets, and provides them with the weapons to carry out attacks; the cooperation has resulted in the death of many American soldiers and, more broadly, is aimed to undermine U.S. strategy and goals in Afghanistan

  • The worst database security breaches in the U.S., U.K.

    On 6 February 2010 AvMed Health Plans announced that personal information of current and former subscribers have been compromised by the theft of two company laptops from its corporate offices in Gainesville, Florida; the information was comprehensive, including Social Security numbers and protected health information; attempts the thwart the theft have been unsuccessful, leaving the identity data of nearly 1,100,000 vulnerable; this is only one of many cases of database breaches — and the number of cases is growing

  • House's homeland security bill doubles cybersecurity R&D budget

    The 2010 Homeland Security Science and Technology Authorization Act would double the cybersecurity research and development budget to $75 million for each of the next two years and authorize another $500 million for a study to find ways to promote industry best practices through, for example, liability requirements that hold hardware and software vendors responsible for damages caused by a security breach

  • U.S. chemical industry comes out swinging against new Senate plant security bill

    Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-New Jersey) introduced a 107-page chemical plant safety bill which goes further than a similar bill — HR-2868 — approved by the House last November; Lautenberg’s bill requires the highest-risk facilities replace the most toxic and volatile chemicals they use with inherently safer technology (IST); it also set a provision, known as private right of action (PRA), which would allow citizens to file suit in federal court against DHS to force enforcement against a specific facility, and would allow private citizen petitions to DHS to demand federal investigation of suspected security shortcomings at particular sites

  • Appropriations bill adds money for port security, Coast Guard, ground transit

    A homeland security appropriations bill being considered by Congress would increase money for port security, save a threatened Coast Guard program from elimination and establish harsher penalties for anyone who intentionally violates airport security rules; the bill allocates $350 million for port security, an increase of $50 million over last year, and $350 million for rail, bus and transit security, a $38 million increase

  • California homeland security market as large as the entire U.S. aviation security market

    New report about the homeland security market in the United States finds that DHS’s spending account for only 18.3 percent of the total homeland security spending in the United States; the combined state and local market share leads the field with 23.7 percent, with the Department of Defense coming in second with 22.5 percent; California’s FY2009 homeland security market was nearly as large as the entire U.S. aviation security market

  • DHS unveils more Than $1.8 billion in FY 2010 preparedness grants

    DHS announces more than $1.8 billion in preparedness grants; the grants are designed to help states, urban areas, tribal governments, and non-profit organizations enhance their protection, prevention, response, and recovery capabilities for risks associated with potential terrorist attacks and other hazards.

  • Utah concludes state resources were used in immigrant list

    Utah Department of Workforce Services database is the source of the list of 1,300 circulated to news outlets in the state; the agency says hundreds had access to database; using state resources to compile the list would violate several state and federal privacy laws, state officials and legal scholars said

  • Senate subcommittee approves about $15 billion to bolster border activity

    Measure allocates $3.57 billion for 20,370 border patrol agents, with 17,000 based on the U.S. Southwest border, more than double the agents in 2004; about $20 million would go toward counter-drug initiatives for southbound operations lanes, personnel, and equipment to stop the outbound flow of weapons and currency used in the drug trade; $20.5 million for one additional unmanned aircraft system and support equipment; the bill include $9 billion for the Coast Guard