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Notes from the Editor Volume XIV

The April 2018 issue features an essay examining cyber vulnerabilities in U.S. nuclear power plants and an essay reviewing an important book in the counterterrorism field. In “SCADA Fusion and Commercial Fission“, Matthew Horner analyzes the vulnerability of supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems at U.S. nuclear power plants to cyber-attack and examines ways

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SCADA Fusion With Commercial Fission

by Matthew Horner Abstract Nuclear power plants rely on digital components, like supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) devices, to perform daily operations. These devices can contain software vulnerabilities. To address SCADA and other cyber threats, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has issued directives for licensed operators to submit cybersecurity plans for their facilities.

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Book Review: Illusions of Terrorism & Counter-Terrorism by Richard English

reviewed by Scott Romaniuk Suggested Citation Romaniuk, Scott. “Book Review: Illusions of Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism by Richard English (Ed.). Oxford: (Oxford University Press, 2015). 174pp., £40.00 (h/b), ISBN 9780197265901.” Homeland Security Affairs 14, Article 5 (April 2018). https://www.hsaj.org/articles/14313   Terrorism, counter-terrorism, and their intersection have produced painful experiences for peoples and communities in many societies.

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Defected from ISIS or Simply Returned, and for How Long?– Challenges for the West in Dealing with Returning Foreign Fighters

by Anne Speckhard, PhD., Ardian Shajkovci, PhD., & Ahmet S. Yayla, PhD. Abstract Many of the 38,000 foreign fighters ISIS has managed to attract to Syria and Iraq will return home. As increasing numbers of ISIS cadres flee the battlefield, some as defectors and others as returnees still aligned with ISIS’ goals and ideology, the challenges

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Improving Maritime Transportation Security in Response to Industry Consolidation

by Nick Monacelli   Abstract Containerized cargo is the single largest security vulnerability in maritime shipping. Recent consolidation in the maritime shipping industry, along with freefalling shipping rates and increased vessel sizes, combine to cause concern for the future of containerized shipping security. Maintaining security in the maritime shipping industry is critical. Programs including the

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Book Review: Preventing and Countering Extremism and Terrorist Recruitment: A Best Practice Guide by Hanif Qadir

reviewed by Caitlin Ambrozik   Suggested Citation Ambrozik, Caitlin. “Book Review: Preventing and Countering Extremism and Terrorist Recruitment: A Best Practice Guide by Hanif Qadir (Melton, Woodbridge: John Catt Educational Ltd, 2016).” Homeland Security Affairs 14, Article 3 (January 2018). https://www.hsaj.org/articles/14267         A parent logs into a child’s computer and a chat

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Cyber Border Security – Defining and Defending a National Cyber Border

by Phillip Osborn Abstract Concerns stemming from the convergence of border and cyber security threats are nothing new to those involved in both disciplines. Criminals and foreign actors have been exploiting computers and cyber methods to circumvent physical border security for decades. Today nearly every crime or homeland security threat that once required some physical

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Applying an Organizational Framework to Examine Jihadi Organizations as an Industry

by Michael Logan, Gina Ligon, and Douglas Derrick Abstract The Leadership of the Extreme and Dangerous for Innovative Results (LEADIR) project, funded by The Department of Homeland Security, Science and Technology Directorate, Office of University Programs (DHS S&T OUP) since 2010, uses an industrial and organizational psychology approach to assess the characteristics of violent extremist

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Incorporating Prioritization in Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience Programs

by Duane Verner, Frederic Petit, and Kibaek Kim Abstract Protecting critical infrastructure, especially in a complex urban area or region, should focus on identifying and prioritizing potential failure points that would have the most severe consequences. Such prioritization can inform targeted planning and investment decisions, such as what infrastructure should be hardened or relocated first

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A Right-Brained Approach to Critical Infrastructure Protection Theory in support of Strategy and Education: Deterrence, Networks, Resilience, and “Antifragility”

By Eric F. Taquechel and Ted G. Lewis Abstract How is the theory behind critical infrastructure/key resources (CIKR) protection evolving? Practitioners who implement strategies should be confident their strategies are based on sound theory, but theory evolves just as strategy evolves. Many theories, techniques, and models/simulations for CIKR protection have been proposed and developed over

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The Roots of Community Resilience: A Comparative Analysis of Structural Change in Four Gulf Coast Hurricane Response Networks

by Thomas W. Haase, Gunes Ertan, and Louise K. Comfort Abstract Despite the emphasis on resilience, disasters continue to challenge the response capacities of communities around the United States. These challenges are generated by the complexities and uncertainties present in the post-disaster environment. This article presents the findings of an exploratory investigation into the development

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Unpacking and Exploring the Relationship between Crisis Management and Social Media in the Era of ‘Smart Devices’

by Eric K. Stern Abstract The rise of social media and the broad diffusion of ‘smart devices’ in contemporary society have profound implications for crisis management. The emergence of social media and smart devices pose both major challenges and major opportunities to crisis managers (c.f. Palen, 2008; Veil et 2011). These social practices and technologies

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The Cold War on Terrorism: Reevaluating Critical Infrastructure Facilities as Targets for Terrorist Attacks

by David Riedman Portions of this article are excerpted from the author’s Center for Homeland Defense and Security master’s degree thesis “How Critical is Critical Infrastructure?” The full document is available in the Homeland Security Digital Library.1 Countries are inverted pyramids that rest precariously on their strategic innards–their leadership, communications, key production, infrastructure, and population.

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Cognitive Defense: Influencing the Target Choices of Less Sophisticated Threat Actors

by Jesse Wasson & Christopher Bluesteen Abstract With the emergence of non-state threats and new operating environments since the end of the Cold War, the relevance of deterrence as a security tool has repeatedly been called into doubt. Modern adversaries often lack territory, militaries, economies, or even identities to threaten and retaliate against. Their motivations are

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Coordination in Crises: Implementation of the National Incident Management System by Surface Transportation Agencies

by Nicholas B. Hambridge, Arnold M. Howitt, & David W. Giles Abstract For more than a decade, the National Incident Management System (NIMS) has served in the United States as the mandated framework for coordinated organization, operational command, and implementation of response to emergencies nationwide. This article examines whether surface transportation agencies are developing the capabilities

Soft Target Security: Environmental design and the deterrence of terrorist attacks on soft targets in aviation transportation

Linda JAshari EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Terrorist attacks on soft targets at airports have increased in the last decade. The events of September 11, 2001 exposed deep vulnerabilities in the security of the aviation sector. As a result, the U.S. government enacted concrete policies and procedures to prevent future airline hijackings and to deter prohibited items from

Crowdsourcing Threat Analysis; Applying a “Superforecasting” Methodology to Detection of Homegrown Violence

James Huse EXECUTIVE SUMMARY This thesis examines investigative decision making, cognitive biases, talent sharing, and the relationship between the random nature of lone actor violence and a set of predefined decision-making protocols. Targeted violence presents a paradox for the homeland security enterprise. These single attacker events, whether assassinations, school shootings, or lone wolf terrorist attacks,

Hacking the Silos: Eliminating Information Barriers Between Public Health and Law Enforcement

Cody Minks EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Law enforcement typically maintains public order and exists to “serve and protect”; this mission must be understood within the context of society, politics, governance, and the criminal justice system.[1] Despite incidents that demonstrate the importance of collaboration, law enforcement agencies rarely work closely with public health agencies on public health issues,

Can We Defend The Defense Supply Chain? Lessons Learned From Industry Leaders in Supply Chain Management

Ronald Menz EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Nearly six years ago the Senate Armed Services Committee investigation exposed how inundated the defense supply chain had become with counterfeit electronic components. The investigation identified vulnerabilities throughout the supply chain and highlighted counterfeit components found in missile systems, aircraft, and other sensitive technologies. These revelations sent shock waves through the

Innovation Increase: How Technology Can Create Open, Decentralized, and Trackable Data Sharing

Erica Hupka EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Research universities need to share information, whether through teaching or disseminating key innovations to society. However, universities should not share all research with everyone.[1] If universities fail to protect sensitive data, it could harm citizens personally, financially, or potentially fatally if acquired by malicious actors. The greater the number of researchers

The Manchurian Responder? How Military and Federal Government Practices Can Help State and Local Public Safety Agencies Prevent Malicious Insider Attacks TACKS

Ryan MCGOVERN EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The issue of a malicious insider is one of the greatest concerns to the security of an organization, including public safety agencies; as one expert put it, it is “irrefutably one of the greatest threats to United States national security.”[1] This thesis asks: What lessons can local and state public safety

Application of Big Data Analytics to Support Homeland Security Investigations Targeting Human Smuggling Networks

Thomas Hodge EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The continuous pressure from large volumes of aliens attempting to enter the country illegally creates a persistent challenge for the 20,000 office of border patrol (OBP) agents attempting to apprehend hundreds of thousands of aliens annually.[1] Human smuggling organizations (HSO) facilitating the smuggling of aliens into the United States have an