discussion 570

When the department of Homeland Security was created, it announced that it “is committed to using cutting edge technologies and scientific talent” to create a safer country. Do you believe they have done that? Why or why not? Cite a source or sources in support of your position.

This assignment is graded

  • Post to Week 8 message board
  • Initial post is due Wednesday, 11:59 p.m. ET
  • Reply post(s) due Sunday, 11:59 p.m. ET
  • Your posts should be of substance, at least two paragraphs that address the topic
  • Cite any outside sources used; it is not necessary to cite the course textbook
  • Discussion board grading rubric

Please reply to: Isaac

I believe that the department of Homeland Security has lived up to their commitment by using “cutting edge technologies and scientific talent” to create a safer country ever since their creation. They have done this in many different ways. Ways such as, conducting advanced research and development programs for the protection of the USA; development for first responder’s equipment that enhances safety and communications; and Cybersecurity advances that protects commercial and mobile networks. The following video link, emphasizes this some more (DHS video https://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/SciTechMobilizingInno… ).

One area where we can visible see the development of cutting edge technologies is the Border Security aspect of DHS. New technology at the security check points at the airports have been installed and is operational, and most recently, there has been the development and installation of machines that have in some cases literally replaced immigration officials when arriving into the USA.

One just has to take a browse on the DHS S&T section of their website and look on the newsroom page (https://www.dhs.gov/science-and-technology/newsroom), where you can see how committed they are to the development of cutting edge technologies. The many news releases that refers to the development of technologies, or the partnering with a university, or the awarding of a contract that is aimed at security enhancement through the development of cybersecurity research are ways that show Homeland Security is adamant about securing the USA, through all and any available means that identifies and ultimate reduces the risk of attack on the homeland. A most recent award saw Homeland Security put up $8.6M for Cutting-Edge Mobile App Security to five companies to develop and boost smartphone security across the federal government. Another recent development in security was the Predictive Threat Model (PTM) that will become instrumental in detecting “nefarious aircrafts”. The current security stipulations for commercial aircrafts are working, so therefore the PTM will be geared towards unidentified aircrafts which would pose a greater threat to security. Another area of development that has been implemented with success is the S&T Hurricane Evacuation (HURREVAC) extend (HV-X) platform. This particular tool envisions plans that help emergency managers prepare effectively for tropical weather, and could be seen in operation in 2017 during Hurricane Harvey. All the necessary tools/personnel were in place along with the ability to monitor power outages through a scientific formula that involves monitoring internet usage. Along with other S&T innovations, security in the USA is on its way to achieving ultimate results. Because R&D is a top priority, the DHS has relied on existing agency programs and also partnered with many different institutions in their mandate to keep the USA safe; this does involves research facilities, National Laboratories and Academic Research Institutions.

However, while they have lived up to their commitments in delivering cutting edge technologies, the DHS’ S&T Directorate is not without their problems. In 2016, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, told the senators at a hearing that one of the challenges that they faced in the S&T division is that the private sector was able to offer a lot more money that they (DHS)were currently in the position to offer. Although much advancement has been made in security, he acknowledged that there still is a lot to achieve, and in this regard more cybertalent is required in the Federal Government. This statement shows that there is constant research to find what works, what is workable, what needs to be changed, and how effective the current measures being taken are.



Bullock, J., Haddow, G. & Coppola, D. (2018). Homeland Security: the essentials.


Please reply to: Leroy

My approach to this question was initially a hardline “no.” This mostly just stemmed from the fact that do not, and had not, done very much research into specific technology projects that the S&T Directorate of DHS was working on. Even the seemingly countless ways that our textbook mentions how funding has been reduced and reworked to better serve the cause wasn’t enough for me believe that the short term security risks were being catered to with these promised technological advances. However, my mind was changed after I did a little digging and found the Cyber Security Division Technology Guide 2017, published by the S&T directorate.

This guided sheds some light onto the actual products that are being worked on, to help give skeptics such as myself a little more insight. One section titled Uptane, refers to a unique way of providing necessary software updates to vehicles without compromising the integrity of its system, cost to manufacturers, dealers nor owners (Cappos & Massey, 2017). This is obviously in light of the inherit security risk that stems from simple systems updates for computers and other cyber systems. Another project that was funded by DHS S&T is an open source program called Autopsy. This advanced analytic software will help give law-enforcement a much needed boost I helping with investigations involving the criminal use of electronic devices; “this criminal use means enforcement organizations need to keep up with the increasing number of devices at a time when their budgets are decreasing” (Buchanan & Mahle, 2017)

So in conclusion I do believe that DHS is delivering on their promise, but technology doesn’t just happen overnight, so there is still room to expand upon their efforts. The guide mentioned above helped to open my eyes to the fact that the money is not being spent for nothing. There are also other technologies that are readily available and being used by first responders, such as Next-Generation Incident Command System and Android Team Awareness Kit, which can be viewed on S&T’s website for DHS.


Buchanan, L., Mahle, M. (2017). Cyber Security Division Technology Guide 2017. Retrieved on 27 February 2018 from https://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publicatio…

Cappos, J. Massey, D. (2017). Cyber Security Division Technology Guide 2017. Retrieved on 27 February 2018 from

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