The following is only very slightly edited from a class I took yesterday. I think it’s good advice for everyone.
We have become vulnerable everywhere because today’s terrorist confronts the United States indirectly. This tactic exploits our vulnerabilities and negates our superior tactical and strategic advantage. The terrorists are looking for headlines, high mortality, and high shock value. The reality is that the risk is now on our home front. We no longer can assume we are safe in the continental United States; as demonstrated by September 11, 2001 terrorist events. The terrorists are bringing the fight to us.
You can help CI by being aware of activities that are precursors of a terrorist event and may provide a warning that saves lives and property. The fundamental indicator is unusual and suspicious activities. We must all remain alert to possibilities that are virtually limited only by one’s imagination. We cannot accept the risk of complacency. Our defense: unpredictability, situational awareness, patience, and vigilance. Awareness, the eyes and voice of each individual, is critical to the success of the war against terrorism.
A partial list of things worthy of additional attention:
- People near a facility using or carrying video cameras or observation equipment (for example night vision devices)
- People parking, standing or loitering over several days with no apparent reasonable explanation
- Suspicious vehicles, something that is not normal for the situation or area
- Unusual questioning about the facility or personal information
- Frequent telephone calls claiming to be wrong numbers
- Abandoned packages, briefcases, or suitcases
- Low-flying aircraft, possibly observing the area
- Any activity considered suspicious or unusual to you from what you normally observe.