The Department of Homeland Security introduced recently a new Strategic Framework for Countering Terrorism and Targeted Violence that explains how the DHS will use its tools and expertise to protect the U.S. from both foreign and domestic terrorist organizations and activities. The framework recognizes the potential of trade-related activities and infrastructure to be used for terrorist purposes and outlines further actions to prevent such outcomes.

One of the framework’s strategic goals is denying terrorists and other hostile actors the opportunity to exploit the U.S. trade, immigration, and domestic and international travel systems. To achieve that goal the framework outlines a number of priority actions, including the following.

- working to enhance end-to-end visibility into supply chains

- implementing technological solutions to more effectively segment risk among millions of daily transactions

- better aligning targeting efforts to detect and disrupt illicit financial operations

- continually refining screening procedures for cargo prior to departure and proactively identifying and addressing vulnerabilities that can be exploited by terrorists

- working to enhance capabilities to detect and interdict the shipment of weapons of mass destruction, components, and related materials through technical detection and other targeting efforts at and between ports of entry

DHS states that it will follow this strategy with an action plan explaining in greater detail how it plans to achieve these and other objectives.

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