News

Better strategy needed for assessing security screening at federal buildings, GAO says

The Government Accountability Office said protection at such facilities is vital given recent high-profile incidents such as the shooting at the Washington Navy Yard in Washington, D.C., where 12 people died and three others were injured by a lone gunman.

New suicide terrorist bombing index shows 4,300 people killed in more than 15 countries in 2014

The Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism's 2014 Suicide Attack Index showed that Iraq accounted for about 40 percent of the 504 confirmed total attacks around the world, which is the highest number in seven years.

Shifting national attitudes about illicit drugs may pose challenge for UN discussion in 2016

While some nations favor the current hardline global approach in dealing with illicit drug production, trade and use, others want to liberalize elements of that framework, creating uncertainty for an international conference next year that will debate such issues.

 

GAO: States may have to rethink funding approaches as disasters become more common, costly

The Government Accountability Office didn't provide any recommendations in its report, but made several observations based on a review of 10 selected states.

New web app helps Miami-Dade residents visualize the impact of sea-level rise

In July 2014, a regional task force published a report that said sea-level rise is an "inevitable consequence" that will threaten infrastructure, the water supply, natural resources, agriculture and the local economy without adaptive planning.

NIST releases draft guide to help communities better plan for, recover from, disasters

Over the last four years, there have been 42 extreme weather events "that caused at least $1 billion in damage, for a total cost of about $227 billion and 1,286 lives lost."

Obama nominates Coast Guard vice admiral to head TSA

If confirmed by the Senate, Peter Neffenger would replace former TSA administrator John Pistole who retired from public service Dec. 31 after announcing his depature two months before.

Former senator says he was 'discouraged' by government response to U.S. Ebola cases

Although the position of assistant secretary for preparedness and response has been established to coordinate these types of scenarios, Jim Talent said he didn't see that person during this Ebola event.

GAO: Most of DHS's major acquisition projects at risk for missed schedules, higher costs

Of those 22, 14 programs had schedule slips, and half of those also experienced cost increases and the estimated lifecycle cost of these programs also rose by $9.7 billion, or 18 percent. 

DHS audits find sensitive material left unsecured in work areas, passwords revealed

The department's inspector general issued three separate reports, publicly released over the last week, involving the Secret Service, the Management Directorate and the offices of the chief information office and financial management. 

CBP officers at Houston seaport need to better document waivers of high-risk cargo inspections

In reviewing 382 medium- to high-risk shipments from fiscal years 2011 to 2013, the DHS inspector general said Customs and Border Protection officers conducted the required reviews of such shipments, but could improve the documentation of waivers and exceptions to required inspections of such shipments.

Alarm system at ex-President George H.W. Bush's Houston home broken for 13 months

Although a new permanent alarm was obtained in mid-January 2014, it wasn't installed until November and December 2014. The Secret Service said it was determining why there was a delay. However, the agency installed a temporary alarm in April 2014.

Feds plan to improve resilience of four regions around US to impacts from climate change

The Interior Department, Environmental Protection Agency and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said the goal is to ensure that long-term conservation efforts in the selected areas in southwest Florida, Hawaii, Washington state and the Great Lakes region take climate change into account.

Lone wolf terrorism not on the rise, but police, military personnel are top targets, report says

Although new research shows that lone wolf terrorism isn't on the rise in America, these individuals with no ties to organized terrorist groups are primarily targeting police and military personnel and prefer using high-velocity firearms.

DHS chief shares plan for Silicon Valley satellite office, also talks China, NCCIC and encryption

DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson said the department is finalizing plans to open a Silicon Valley satellite office "to serve as another point of contact" in remarks to RSA Conference April 21.

New report calls for greater cooperation, research in Arctic region among nations

The report, which is based on a Feb. 23 meeting of 45 Arctic experts, government officials and representatives of leading non-government organizations, said the Arctic "should be kept apart from the curent complex geo-political environment" as much as possible.

Coast Guard makes plea for more boats to combat drug trafficking off US southern coast

The service is the nation's foremost defense against cocaine, but about half of the Coast Guard's high-confidence intelligence drug trafficking cases in the Caribbean cannot be acted on because it doesn't have enough ships there.

With Earth Day nearing, Obama calls climate change biggest threat to planet

With 2014 as the warmest year on record and 14 of the 15 hottest years on record in the 21st Century, Obama said there will be stronger storms, longer droughts and more wildfires, among other implications.

ICE could have saved up to $40M by improving detainee air transport program, DHS audit finds

ICE Air Operations, which is responsible for transporting detainees within the United States or returning them to their countries of origin, does not collect data that could help it better support operational decisions and improve program effectiveness.

Secret Service making moves to 'combat' personnel misconduct, DHS IG tells lawmakers

However, John Roth says there's a feeling among Secret Service officers that they can't report such misconduct to superiors because they fear retaliation, which is a serious problem.