DHS Reissues National Terrorism Advisory System Bulletin

The NTAS bulletin warns that military success against terror groups abroad could encourage people in the U.S. to plot attacks here rather than join groups overseas.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has reissued its National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS) Bulletin, saying the United States continues to face threats from homegrown terrorists and violent extremists from abroad.

DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen extended the NTAS Bulletin May 9 after considering the current threat environment as well as input from DHS intelligence and law enforcement partners.

The bulletin said terrorist groups are increasingly using technology, such as encrypted social media applications, to inspire, enable and direct individuals to commit terrorist acts. These attacks often involve striking soft targets and crowded places, as well as the use of homemade weapons, vehicles, small arms, knives and poisons or toxins.

More sophisticated attacks using conventional weapons as well as the targeting of commercial aviation and air cargo, the bulletin noted, continue to be threats. The notice also explained that some terrorist groups are pursuing new technologies such as unmanned aerial systems (UAS) and chemical agents.

The NTAS Bulletin also described U.S. government counterterrorism efforts. DHS and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), it noted, continue to provide guidance to state, local, tribal and territorial partners. DHS partners with the private sector to provide risk assessments and organize security measures.

“The public may continue to observe law enforcement and security activity in and around public places and events,” the bulletin stated.

The notice also highlighted DHS collaboration with the FBI and other intelligence partners to identify and disrupt terror suspects, implement additional screening and vetting measures to detect suspicious travelers and cargo, combat violent radicalization and terrorist recruitment, monitor emerging threats and engage with foreign partners.

The bulletin encouraged citizens to listen to local law enforcement and public safety officials and “continue to travel, attend public events, and freely associate with others but remain vigilant and aware of surroundings.”

“The United States is engaged in a generational fight against terrorists who seek to attack the American people, our country, and our way of life,” the bulletin said. “An informed, vigilant and engaged public remains one of our greatest assets to identify potential terrorists and prevent attacks.”

First released in December 2015, this is the sixth iteration of the bulletin on the homegrown threat. The bulletin is set to expire on Sept. 14.

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