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9/11 and Its Effects on Homeland and Private Security

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9/11 and its Effects on Homeland and Private Security

Aaron Miller Jr

Troy University

Private Security

CJ 3335

Dr. Robert Mathis


The terror attacks of 911 prompted the need for changed homeland security, counter-terrorism as well as federal, state and local government roles in America. In fact, the attacks of 911 exposed flaws these departments that were irreversible to the point that many of these departments had to be completely revamped in order to meet its obligations to of preparedness and law enforcement roles in protecting the citizens.    

Prior to 911 law enforcement agencies, primary focus was aimed at intelligence gathering on crimes such as organized, white collar and gang-related crime.  However, counter-terrorism has been added to that list due to the fact that many of the law enforcement agencies were caught off guard due to the fact they had little to no training on combating a terror attack prior to September 11, 2001. Today local law enforcement agencies have, not only included counter-terrorism as part of their approach to daily policing but it has also, become part of e,each department's rigorous training and doctrine and intelligence gathering. Before 911 many local departments, also lacked the ability to communicate and share information across a broad range of state, private and non governmental organizations which resulted in slow miscalculated information sharing that at times was erroneous causing would be thieves and suspects to slip through the hands of agencies who lacked the information to capture the would-be suspects in their jurisdiction. Today local departments have included counter-terrorism departments as part of their special crime units to gather information and target terrorist-related activity. As stated earlier 911 also exposed several communication gaps between law enforcement agencies at every level to fix this problem many state and local agencies established fusion cells aimed at creating partnerships and open lines of communication. They often conduct exercises using equipment that allows them to communicate and share accurate information across a broad range of agencies. It is important to note that these fusion centers not only share information on counter-terrorism measures but they also share information on all crime and emergency response issues across state, federal governmental and nongovernmental organizations. One area where this has become extremely helpful is in the area of drug trafficking. Studies have shown that since 911, drug trafficking across the United States has been significantly reduced through the efforts of these fusion centers.

The renewed focus on homeland security and counterterrorism have also paved the way for new technology in the area of Information security, network software, and cameras. In addition to better access to information, it also aids in the linkage of departments through virtual networks to allow the fusion of criminal activity using the world wide web, therefore, reducing the need for face to face interaction between agencies. The use of this technology reduces manpower and resources while adding real-time interaction along with accuracy. The use of technology does not come at without a cost. There are several challenges that are associated with networks and intranet information sharing. The most notable is the maintenance, potential shutdowns and Cyber attacks by viruses aimed at destroying the networks ability to track and share information. So while technology may reduce the number of man-hours needed to operate and run the fusion cells, more man-hours are needed to maintain, protect and service the network equipment from crashes and attacks. Another issue is developing these types of networks take time lots of resources and are often very expensive. One clear advantage to these types of networks is they do not rely on personal feelings and personalities to operate. Since there is no human contact required information is sharing is conducted without the red tape and bureaucracy of face to face information sharing. This results in not only the speed of information shared but the amount of information shared across agencies across jurisdictions. Smaller agencies that lack the resources and personnel to establish internal fusion cells are able to benefit from the use of technology in their efforts to protect its citizens from hurt and danger.  The major overall advantage of the changes has been a focus on preparedness, an organization of personnel and across regional boundaries.  

The attacks of 911 changed the way that funding is issued and appropriated for the defense of Homeland security and local and personal security for preparedness and response. One of the New initiatives created as a result of the Homeland Security Act was called the Urban Area Security Initiative its purpose was to direct funding to local law enforcement agencies to establish fusion cells and systems that will allow them to participate in State and federal prevention protection. Under this new initiative, local State agencies are required to ensure that at least twenty-five percent of the funding provided to them are dedicated to law enforcement agency training and education and prevention of terrorism. Because this grant is an initiative of  9/11 the funds that are generated are given to the state and not directly to the local law enforcement departments.  In order to ensure accountability, the new initiative also required states to hire full-time managers to manage the funds and required each state or region to accurately report requirements and fund and resource distribution to the Department Of Homeland Security Program. It is important to note that despite these efforts the United States Government Accountability Office found that some states still failed to ensure these funds were being used for their intended purpose. Many states reported that the process of obtaining the funds had become so convoluted with bureaucracy and red tape that they simply forgo efforts to procure funding or material through the grant.

Community policing was another area that saw a large shift after 9/11. Pre 9/11policing consisted of community, problem-oriented, intelligence-led and predictive policing.

Community policing Prior to 911 consisted of motorized patrols aimed at creating a presence in order to create deterrence. Post 9/11 those concepts were changed to include motorized patrols armed with technology which allows connection between the police and the people in the communities in which they serve. This new system of community policing is designed to build partnerships while addressing problems that impact the communities public safety and identifies individuals whose pose potential risks to Homeland Security.



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