The Pentagon is taking new steps to increase security and surveillance programs at its bases, and will join an FBI intelligence-sharing program aimed at identifying future terror threats.
The new partnership with the FBI's eGuardian program comes two years after the Pentagon shut down a controversial anti-terror database that collected reports of suspicious activity near military installations. The now-defunct program, called TALON, was closed after revelations it had improperly stored information on peace activists. The decision to use the FBI's program is part of a broader campaign to beef up security at military facilities and better identify terror threats among its troops, said an AP report.
Over the past 18 months some of those threats have been deadly, as attackers spurred on by Islamic extremism and opposition to U.S. wars abroad have targeted troops at home. Use of the FBI database will be phased in over the next 15 months and allow military police and analysts to share information on suspected terrorist threats with local, state and federal law enforcement across the country. Each report is reviewed by trained supervisors to make sure it represents a possible terror threat and doesn't simply involve activities protected by the First Amendment — such as war protests, the report said.
Since the eGuardian system launched in January 2009, the FBI has opened 96 investigations involving domestic, international, or cyber terrorism, or weapons of mass destruction.