On Thursday, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced a six-month extension of the National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS) Bulletin, marking the third time it has been reissued since its release in December 2015. Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke said she made the decision “with input from intelligence and law enforcement partners,” echoing the Bulletin’s summary in her official statement.
“Our enemies remain focused on attacking the United States, and they are constantly adapting,” she explained. “DHS and its partners are stepping up efforts to keep terrorists out of America and to prevent terrorist recruitment and radicalization here at home, and we urge the public to remain vigilant and report suspicious activity.”
The Bulletin focuses on the use of technology in attacks on the U.S., including unmanned aerial systems (UAS), or drones, that could be used against citizens or even commercial aircraft, as the Bulletin warns: “terrorists continue to target commercial aviation and air cargo, including with concealed explosives.”
In June, then-Secretary of Homeland Security and current Chief of Staff John Kelly announced new aviation security measures, which included enhanced screening procedures for all commercial flights, in response to the “very real threat” aviation faces as the “crown jewel target” of terrorists.