Homeland Security Network Blog

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Free Webinar: The Convergence of Physical and Cyber Security: attacks, threat vectors and responses

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REGISTER   The Convergence of Physical and Cyber Security: attacks, threat vectors and responses With the hottest thing being the “Internet of things”, and cyber control of physical devices escalating, a new era of vulnerability is being created where a cyber attack will be more than an attack on computers. It will increasingly consist of taking over devices. No one is more vulnerable to that than your security implementation: access control, cameras, alarms, bio metric identification and other security hardware. David Wallace of Surveillance One, in conjunction with physical security specialist Security Solutions International SSItm will deliver an overview of the full two-day program.Topics include how hard security devices at critical infrastructure and other sites can be compromised through Cyber-Attack and revealing the vulnerability of IT Networks via an attack through the physical security hardware.  Current examples include breaches of airport access controls, pipeline disruptions, power outages, and critical infrastructure SCADA control devices seized by foreign...

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Measuring the Effectiveness of Israel’s ‘Targeted Killing’ Campaign

Measuring the Effectiveness of Israel’s ‘Targeted Killing’ Campaign by Ophir Falk ISSN 2334-3745 2 February 2015 PERSPECTIVES ON TERRORISM Volume 9, Issue 1 I. Articles Measuring the Effectiveness of Israel’s ‘Targeted Killing’ Campaign by Ophir Falk Abstract With targeted killing long becoming a key and perhaps primary counterterrorism measure used by a number of States in their confrontation with lethal terror, this article looks at the pros and cons of this method of warfare while focusing on the underlying justification for its use–namely its objective driven effectiveness. Israel’s use of targeted killing, intended to mitigate Palestinian suicide terrorism during the first decade of the 21st century, serves as the key case study in this article. A quantitative approach was adopted, using growth model analysis, and isolation of designated area, to demonstrate the effectiveness of targeted killing in reducing fatalities caused by suicide bombings. The period examined was from 2000 to 2010,...

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Most Cyber Attacks Occur From This Common Vulnerability

Time Clark As you read this, hackers are working diligently to uncover avenues, inroads and byroads to get into your confidential corporate data. I know what you’re thinking. You’ve heard this all before, your company isn’t vulnerable and you already took care of it. Are you sure? Time for a reality check. Even if you figured out how to plug holes in your networks, the hackers may be gaining access through applications and solutions. Sure, many organizations have significant network security in place but it’s not enough as 84% of all cyber-attacks are happening on the application layer. This final security frontier, the application layer, was a hot topic during a recent SAP Radio broadcast where three security experts weighed in on the threat of cyber-attacks and offered ideas on how to prevent them. While software is enabling really exciting and cool things, like connected cars and robotic vacuums, this pervasiveness...

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Testimony turns to MIT officer’s death in bombing trial


By Milton J. Valencia Nathan Harman , recounting his story publicly for the first time on Wednesday, told a federal jury that he was riding his bike through the MIT campus in Cambridge one night two years ago when he came upon a strange figure. The man was leaning into a police cruiser. The driver’s-side door was open, and the window down. “He sort of popped up, stood up, and turned around. He looked startled,” said Harman, a 24-year-old graduate student. The person was thin, and tall, but not as tall as Harman, who is six feet. He had a sweater with an emblem on the front, was wearing a hat, and something about his nose was remarkable. In federal court in Boston Wednesday, a visibly nervous Harman saw that man again: Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the surviving Boston Marathon bomber. Harman pointed and declared, “That’s him, he has a blue shirt on.”...

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Hear the Chilling Audio From an Islamic State Terror Suspect Captured in the U.S.

By: Zach Noble The Islamic State’s supporters have a message for America: They’re in your country, in your state, ready to wage jihad on American soil. One Islamic State supporter, Christopher Cornell, called three times from jail to make sure that message was heard in an unexpected interview with WXIX-TV. The 20-year-old Cornell, who refers to himself as Raheel Mahrus Ubaydah, was arrested as part of an undercover FBI investigation in January after he bought two rifles and 600 rounds of ammunition for a planned attack on the U.S. Capitol, authorities said. The Ohio man is being held at the Boone County Jail in Kentucky, and on Thursday he got in touch with WXIX reporter Tricia Macke after calling the television station three times from his cell. What Cornell said in the interview was so blunt and disturbing, his attorney tried to get a judge to prevent WXIX from airing the...

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MEMRI TV, Egyptian Muslim Cleric, "Boston Bombs A Message" (Supporters Of Terrorism)

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Online HLS Master's or Certificates from Penn State

Penn State World Campus

    Friend, Did you know that Penn State has been offering quality online education in Homeland Security for the past 9 years? The program has grown to become the nation's most comprehensive online homeland security portfolio with master's degree options and graduate certificates in 5 areas of specialization: homeland security base programagricultural biosecurity and food defensegeospatial intelligenceinformation security and forensicspublic health preparedness Whether you choose to start with a single online course or begin working on a certificate or master's degree right away, there are many advantages to our program, such as: Online courses — Our courses are 100% online, allowing you to study wherever and whenever you want.Flexibility — If you choose, you can continue to work in your current job and apply your newly acquired knowledge along the way, allowing for a richer learning experience. Or, schedule more classes and finish your degree faster. Read more about all...

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ISIS goes global

By Peter Bergen, CNN National Security Analyst (CNN)In the past eight months, ISIS has seeded itself in some dozen countries around the globe. Indicative of this was the announcement on Saturday that the Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram had pledged its "allegiance to the Caliph of the Muslims," ISIS leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi. The global spread of ISIS raises key questions about whether these new affiliates signal an intensification of the threat of terror. It also has important implications for the debate in Congress over Obama's request for a new authorization to fight ISIS. Lt. Col. Michael Waltz, a U.S. Special Forces reserve officer who has just returned to the States after advising the Nigerian Ministry of Defence in its fight against Boko Haram, told me, "So far the pledge (to ISIS) seems to be legit." Waltz says there is some debate about the timing of the pledge, because Boko...

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Ohio Muslim says he would have shot Obama, attacked Israeli embassy


BY ROBERT SPENCER An earlier Associated Press story says that he “wanted to be addressed by his Muslim name, Raheel Mahrus Ubaydah, and to have access to a prayer mat and a clock in jail so he could continue his religious practices.” But the headline of this one calls him Christopher Lee Cornell, in keeping with the constant mainstream media practice of minimizing and downplaying the Islamic character of Islamic jihad terrorism. Note also that in this story he also says that “support of the Islamic State group is widespread. ‘We’re here in Ohio, we’re in every state,’ he said. ‘We’re more organized than you think.'” This is because mainstream analysts are too busy denying that the Islamic State is Islamic to study why it has so much appeal among young Muslims in the West. “Christopher Lee Cornell, Ohio Terrorism Suspect, Says He Would Have Shot Obama,” by Lisa Cornwall and...

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Win a MACBOOK Pro!

So we are making it fun for you to come and join us by offering up the following amazing Raffle Prize. A MACBOOK PRO will be raffled off on the 15th of March to the first 100 people that do the following:  1. Download the Alexa toolbar a month. Here are the instructions  2. Create an automatic open in the Browser for the Homeland Security Network or make it your favorite for a month.  3. Like us on Facebook! Click Here 4. Send us an email to say you have taken those steps! This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   That’s it, we will place your name in a Raffle for the MACBOOK PRO, a $1300.00 valueand you HAVE A 1 to 100 chance of winning. Even if you have never won a raffle before, you can win this one!  

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It’s the Chicken watching the Fox when it comes to the Obama administrations negotiations with IRAN

By Henry Morgenstern- Homeland Security Network. Yesterday’s speech by Benjamin Netanyahu served to reinforce what we all know – Iran cannot be trusted. Netanyahu’s insistence that they need the deal more than the US does and that the US should leave the table until they comply.  That just like in a Persian Bazaar if  you walk out of the store while haggling you will get a better deal ( Iranians/Persians invented haggling in their bazaars) and all who have been to the Middle East know this but no-one in Washington seems to, least of all the woman entrusted with these most dangerous talks. We have not asked if we can trust our own US administrators with such a perilous negotiation that could lead to a Global war if botched. Put aside the legacy issue of a lame duck President, trying with all his power to circumvent the big majority his opponents...

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ISIS Chemical Weapons Libya: Military Warns Islamic State Might Have Mustard Gas, Sarin


By Cristina Silva   Islamic State fighters in Libya allegedly have seized large amounts of chemical weapons, including mustard gas and the nerve agent Sarin, the Libyan military charged. “Unfortunately [chemical weapons] exist in locations known to the militias, who have seized large amounts of them to use in their war against the [Libyan] army,” a Libyan military official told the London daily Asharq al-Awsat. ISIS fighters near Tripoli have begun testing the weapons that reportedly once belonged to the former regime of Moammar Gadhafi. “Before his death, Gadhafi left approximately 1,000 cubic tons worth of material used for manufacturing chemical weapons and about 20,000 cubic tons of mustard gas,” the military official said. The weapons are likely 10 years old and in a degraded state, but remain dangerous, former British Army officer Hamish de Bretton-Gordon told The Daily Mail Sunday. "While we don’t know how much IS has acquired, and...

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Mall Terror: Lone Wolf Threat Is Real, Say Officials

BY TOM WINTER AND ROBERT WINDREM ficials say publicly there is no "credible threat" of an attack on America's shopping malls, despite an on-line "call to action" by terror group al Shabab -- but behind the scenes authorities are taking the threat seriously, because previous calls to action have been heeded by violent "lone wolves." Last October a soldier was shot and killed in Ottawa just steps from Parliament in what Canadian officials called a terrorist act. The FBI says a bloody hatchet attack on NYPD officers the same month was also terrorism. Both attacks came after ISIS urged lone offenders in the West to attack "soldiers, patrons and troops" and members of law enforcement. "Calls to action are a way a terrorist group like al Shabab can project itself without expending resources," said a U.S. counterterrorism official. "It's a way to awaken and embolden those who may not be in...

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Tarek Osman Explains ISIS, Its Impact on the Middle East, and Its Future | 2014 Forum 2000


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Obama administration attacks Egypt and UAE for ISIS raids

By Lauri B. Regan Where does one begin to parse the inane and irrational thinking that went into the Obama administration’s public rebuke of Egypt and the United Arab Emirates for attacking the Islamists who beheaded 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians in Libya? Pentagon Spokesperson Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby condemned Egypt’s airstrikes on ISIS stating We discourage other nations from taking a part in Libya’s issues through violence.  We want the issues solved in Libya to be done peacefully and through good governance and politics and not violence. So it’s okay for the U.S. to join forces with Iran (an enemy) to help fight ISIS in Iraq, a county that fell into chaos when the geniuses in the White House decided to lose a war that had been won - just for political expediency.  But it’s not okay for Egypt (an ally) to defend itself and its citizens against the maniacal terrorists...

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What ISIS Really Wants

1.      Graeme Wood is a contributing editor at The Atlantic. His personal site is gcaw.net. Published in the Atlantic monthly (see link at end of article)   The left leaning Atlantic Monthly came out resoundingly on the very best and most important statement on ISIS’s completely ISLAMIC and ISLAMIST nature, despite the continued false dichotomy that the President stated: “ We are not at War with Islam”. We may not be, but that does not change the Islamic aspirations of ISIS. Read about how Islamic, the Islamic State really is and stay informed. Long but worthwhile  What is the Islamic State? Where did it come from, and what are its intentions? The simplicity of these questions can be deceiving, and few Western leaders seem to know the answers. In December, The New York Times published confidential comments by Major General Michael K. Nagata, the Special Operations commander for the United States in...

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Alternative Perspectives on the Radicalization of Home- grown and “Leaderless” Terrorists

Two theories used to explain criminal behaviour are adapted here to provide an alternative means of understanding the radicalization of home-grown and “leaderless” terrorists.   Radicalization is a complex issue influenced by regional and country characteristics and dynamics as well as individual circumstances. However, another way of understanding the radicalization process of home-grown and “leaderless” terrorists could involve the use of theories that explain criminal behaviour. Two such theories are discussed here – Strain Theory and Differential Association Theory – with the aim of exploring how they can improve our understanding of radicalization in order to take better preventive action as well as design more suitable de-radicalization or disengagement programs. Home-grown terrorists usually refer to individuals that are citizens or residents of the country they carry out acts of violence against. They may draw resources, expertise and leadership from external terrorist groups and networks, but this is not an essential characteristic...

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ISIS and al-Qaeda use social media, Web platforms differently to achieve different ends

For years, Minnesota’s Somali community has been battling the recruitment of young men and women into militant groups like al-Shabaab and the Islamic State (ISIS). Several community and religious leaders have helped form youth groups and held public discussions about the radicalization of Somalis in America. Law enforcement agencies are also playing their part. Andy Luger, U.S. Attorney for the District of Minnesota, is working with members of the local Somali community to better understand its concerns and how to help the community fight extremism. According to CBS News, when Luger learned that a local Muslim man was prohibited from boarding a flight at the Minneapolis airport because his name resembled one on the Transportation Security Administration’s “No-Fly List,” Luger had the issued resolved within a few weeks. His swift action has earned Luger praise within the Somali community. “We’ve been waiting for somebody like him,” said Mohamed Farah, executive director...

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Go Inside Mussolini's Secret Bunker That Hasn't Been Seen In 70 Years

To mark the 70th anniversary of its liberation from fascism, Rome has reopened one of the bunkers built for Italian dictator Benito Mussolini.   A series of bunkers were built under the Italian capital during World War II to provide shelter for bureaucrats and party leaders.   Bunker di Roma, a local website, has cataloged up to 12 different bunkers beneath the city and campaigned for their refurbishment so that tourists can visit them.   Many of the bunkers, including Mussolini's personal air raid shelter, have not been entered since the end of the war, according to Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera.   Mussolini was leader of the Italian fascist movement from 1923 to 1943. Written by: STEFANO POZZEBON

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Another 9/11 is Not What America Should Be Afraid Of...

If you were to ask a sampling of American security and intelligence officials for their pick as the gravest threat to face the United States from global jihadists, you might be surprised by the answer you would hear. If you listen to official Washington, or the establishment media, for your answer, you might hear: a spectacular, 9/11-style attack, involving perhaps Ebola-infected suicide bombers flying Dreamliner aircraft into the Golden Gate Bridge, while dropping illegal immigrants along the way, to spread Enterovirus among America’s helpless school children. Does that about cover all of our boogeymen? When I worked in the national security establishment, in the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center—admittedly, half a decade ago—tracking groups like al-Qa’ida central, al-Qa’ida in Iraq, Ansar al-Sunna, al-Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb, and others, the threat that kept me up at night was not the spectacular, 9/11-style, once-in-a-decade plot. No, I was pretty confident in our ability, post-9/11,...

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