Homeland Security Information and Resources


Homeland security is the concerted effort to protect against terrorist attacks within the United States, minimize America's vulnerability to terrorism, and reduce the damage and be able to recover from attacks that do occur. Homeland security is also defined as what the United States is doing to prevent threats to the country and its people, both within its borders and outside of it.

After the attacks on September 11, 2001, homeland security took on an expanded meaning. It now encompasses a number of agencies and entities of the government. These include the United States Coast Guard, Civil Air Patrol, the United States National Guard, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, and the Transportation Security Administration, to name just a few.

Under the homeland security umbrella, there are a variety of duties for which it is responsible. These include monitoring and protecting both land and maritime borders, aviation and maritime transportation security, protecting the critical infrastructure of the country, defending the country against biotechnology attacks, preparing and responding to emergencies brought on by both acts of terrorism and natural disasters, staying abreast of, and researching, the latest in future technologies in the security industry, and detecting materials made of radioactive or radiological elements.

A little more than one month after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the Patriot Act was signed into law by then President Bush after passing easily through both the Senate and the House. The Patriot Act gave law enforcement officials a much wider reach in order to gather information in ways that were restricted prior to its passing. These include searching email records, telephone records, financial and other records. Transactions dealing with foreign finances are able to be scrutinized more closely. Immigrants can now be detained, and subsequently deported, with greater ease if they are suspected of terrorist activities.

With the more robust homeland security efforts, it was determined that a system was needed in order to advise the citizens of the United States of the climate of likely terrorist activities. A national threat advisory scale was devised. Based on a color coded system, the likelihood of an attack was determine by a number of factors.

A Severe threat is colored red and denotes that, due to knowledge and information obtained by the government, the threat is most likely. Bright Yellow Orange denotes a high likelihood that an attack of some sort will occur while Yellow means that the situation is elevated. A blue threat is defined as a guarded threat and a green threat means that the threat is low.

Homeland Security Resources:

Homeland Security: Counterterrorism

Funds Help Nations Develop Counterterrorism Capabilies

Cyber Security

Management of Border Security

Border Security

Homeland Security: Decision and Information Services

Homeland Security: Strategic, Operational, and Tactical Partnerships

National Strategy for Homeland Security

National Threat Advisory Scale

United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team

Assessing the State of Homeland Security
Creating the Department of Homeland Security

National and Homeland Security

National Institute of Standards and Technology

Department of Energy

Centre for the Protection of National Infastructure

Homeland Security: An Overview

Securing the Homeland

Agenda: Homeland Security

Homeland Security and the USDA

Terrorism and Financial Intelligence at the US Department of Treasury

Homeland Defense and Homeland Security Studies

United States Army Report on Homeland Security

Foreign Policy and National Security

Homeland Security Spending

National Homeland Security Knowledgebase

Helping Citizens Prepare for a Terrorist Attack

Rand Homeland Security and Defense Center

Homeland Security Institute

Homeland Security Digital Library

Homeland Security Affairs

Transportation Security Administration

United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission