Fusion centers helping to link state and local-level information-sharing
| 01.02.2007 | 06:39:27 | Views: 3748 | ID:
January 2 '07: The Washington Post reported over the weekend that state and local law enforcement agencies are increasingly moving toward creating domestic intelligence fusion centers which link federal, state and local government agencies with law enforcement and the FBI to share information to help fight the war on terror.
"The fusion centers range from small conference facilities to high-tech nerve centers with expensive communications networks," the Post reported. Though there are concerns over privacy issues, and the reach with which law enforcement agencies are able to obtain information - most officials say that they will continue to work toward seamless information-sharing as long as there is support from the community.Harvey Eisenberg, an assistant U.S. attorney told the Post, "You need to educate cops, firefighters, health officials, transportation officials, sanitation workers, to understand the nature of the threat. ... And not to become super-spies ... Constitutionally, they see something, they can report it." The fusion centers have been seen as the "network of networks" which link more than 700,000 local and state police officers, the Post continued. More than $380 million in federal homeland security grants have been given to help build and develop the centers. To organize the centers, the Bush administration's homeland security adviser Francis Fragos Townsend "laid out a new U.S. road map for intelligence collection on November 27. It urges fusion centers be incorporated in a national Information Sharing Environment."
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