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Terrorism risk assessment at the Department of Homeland Security: hearing before the Subcommittee on Intelligence, Information Sharing
by:United States. Congress. House.
Original publisher: Washington : U.S. G.P.O. : For sale by the Supt. of Docs., U.S. G.P.O., 2007. LC Number: KF27 .H575 2005f OCLC Number: (OCoLC)174518897 Subject: Terrorism -- United States -- Prevention. Excerpt: ... 11 Assessing homeland security risks, which can stem from both terrorism and nat-ural disasters, is an enormously complex undertaking...
Original publisher: Washington : U.S. G.P.O. : For sale by the Supt. of Docs., U.S. G.P.O., 2007. LC Number: KF27 .H575 2005f OCLC Number: (OCoLC)174518897 Subject: Terrorism -- United States -- Prevention. Excerpt: ... 11 Assessing homeland security risks, which can stem from both terrorism and nat-ural disasters, is an enormously complex undertaking but is also a critical task if the federal government seeks to marshal its finite resources effectively. Before turn-ing to the key policy issue of how to use risk assessments to maximize unity of effort at the federal level, I would like to briefly outline what makes a basic risk assess-ment and some of the challenges inherent in trying to assess homeland security risks. As Secretary Chertoff has emphasized since being named Secretary of Homeland Security, focusing on the ' ' trio of threat, vulnerability and consequence as a general model for assessing risk ' ' is at the heart of the DHS approach. It is worth peeling back the layers of the onion in those three areas a bit more fully to understand the complexities associated with assessing homeland security risks. In most formal discussions of risk assessment, risk is defined as the product of the probability that a certain event might occur - a suicide bomber attack on a hotel such as we saw take place last week in Jordan - and the consequences that could result from such an event. The probability side of the equation is basically a com-bination of threats and vulnerabilities. Threats could be assessed in terms of the different kinds of weapons and delivery systems that might be available to our en-emies. In some cases weapons could be relatively difficult to acquire or develop, like the smallpox virus or a small nuclear device, or they could be much more common - an improvised explosive device carried on a delivery truck. Assessing vulnerabilities means establishing the pool of possible targets - which could include buildings that are vulnerable every day like...
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