Watchdog report: Intel sharing among agencies can improve
U.S. federal agencies tasked with preventing terror attacks have improved their ability to share counterterrorism information, but additional steps can be taken to increase the dissemination of intelligence reports and to make information sharing more efficient, according to a new watchdog report.
In response to requests from three Senate committees, inspectors general from the Justice Department, the intelligence community and the Department of Homeland Security reviewed information-sharing efforts among federal entities to determine if counterterrorism intelligence is being adequately gathered and shared, and to identify gaps or duplication of those efforts.
A report issued Friday highlights 23 areas where improvements could be made to make information sharing more efficient — including by providing better guidance on how agents from the DHS Office of Intelligence and Analysis could create and share reports from the field without hindering FBI agents’ efforts.
Noting DHS responsibilities, including overseeing security at borders and airports, the report highlights that “DHS has unique access to information about travelers, including known or suspected terrorists, and is well-situated to intercept and identify travel by potential terrorists and foreign fighters.”
But the report notes that “none of the [Intelligence and Analysis] field officials with whom DHS OIG spoke said they regularly develop intelligence reports from terrorism and counterterrorism information.”