Terrorism Incidents – Alert Notifications

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ntasThe National Terrorism Advisory System, or NTAS, replaced the color-coded Homeland Security Advisory System (HSAS).

This system will more effectively communicate information about terrorist threats by providing timely, detailed information to the public, government agencies, first responders, airports and other transportation hubs, and the private sector. It recognizes that Americans all share responsibility for the nation’s security, and should always be aware of the heightened risk of terrorist attack in the United States and what they should do.[1]

Below are the following National Terrorism Advisory System, or NTAS, alert levels:[3]

Imminent Threat Alert
Warns of a credible, specific, and impending terrorist threat against the United States.

Elevated Threat Alert
Warns of a credible terrorist threat against the United States.

After reviewing the available information, the Secretary of Homeland Security will decide, in coordination with other Federal entities, whether an NTAS Alert should be issued.

NTAS Alerts will only be issued when credible information is available.

These alerts will include a clear statement that there is an imminent threat or elevated threat. Using available information, the alerts will provide a concise summary of the potential threat, information about actions being taken to ensure public safety, and recommended steps that individuals, communities, businesses and governments can take to help prevent, mitigate or respond to the threat.

The NTAS Alerts will be based on the nature of the threat: in some cases, alerts will be sent directly to law enforcement or affected areas of the private sector, while in others, alerts will be issued more broadly to the American people through both official and media channels.

Sunset Provision
An individual threat alert is issued for a specific time period and then automatically expires. It may be extended if new information becomes available or the threat evolves.

NTAS Alerts contain a sunset provision indicating a specific date when the alert expires - there will not be a constant NTAS Alert or blanket warning that there is an overarching threat. If threat information changes for an alert, the Secretary of Homeland Security may announce an updated NTAS Alert. All changes, including the announcement that cancels an NTAS Alert, will be distributed the same way as the original alert.

 

NTAS Alerts will be issued through state, local and tribal partners, the news media and directly to the public via the following channels:

 


References:

  1. U.S. Department of Homeland Security – NTAS Public Guide: http://www.dhs.gov/ntas-public-guide
  2. Image Source: http://www.dhs.gov/national-terrorism-advisory-system [Accessed March 11, 2014]
  3. U.S. Department of Homeland Security – NTAS Public Guide: http://www.dhs.gov/ntas-public-guide

 

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