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NEWS

2017 News

January - Cyber Security for Small to Mid-size Businesses, Montgomery County

The Governor’s Office of Homeland Security together with Montgomery County Department of Public Safety offered valuable presentations on various cyber security topics from subject matter experts: Bradford Willke, US Dept. of Homeland Security’s Cyber Security Advisor; Erik Avakian, CISO, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania; Pennsylvania State Police; FBI; INFRAGARD; and from a legal perspective from McNees Wallace and Nurick LLC.

February - Drexel University Exercise, Philadelphia

The scenarios were designed to present areas of potential vulnerability for Drexel and to measure the capability of the university to respond and collaborate with law enforcement and emergency response personnel. The exchange of ideas from all the participants during the TTX was outstanding and an After Action Report will follow, highlighting in more detail, the responses outlined by the university and the participating agencies. It takes many interested agencies and organizations, who work together, to fully reap the rewards of a TTX. We were fortunate to have federal, state, and local law enforcement and emergency services join us with a coordinated approach to each scenario that stretched, sometimes to capacity, the resources of the community.

March - Multi-judisdictional IED Workshop, Pittsburgh

The PA Governor's Office of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, PA Region 13 Task Force-supported City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County Bomb Squads offered a Multi-Jurisdiction Improvised Explosive Device Security Planning Workshop in downtown Pittsburgh.  The Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Multi-Jurisdictional Improvised Explosive Device Security Planning (MJIEDSP) Workshop process assists multi-jurisdictional areas with IED security and response plans that are used to identify specific bombing prevention actions that reduce vulnerability and mitigate the risk of IED attacks. An effective preparedness and response plan against bombing threats and real-life incidents requires close coordination among many different public safety, law enforcement, and private sector organizations and disciplines. OBP works closely with each MJIEDSP community, providing expertise on planning and operational requirements for IED incident response.  The product from the Workshop forms a roadmap for future bomb squad funding, equipment, and activities for potentially years to come as well as enhanced relationships through this interaction.  This workshop assists the first responder and critical infrastructure community in understanding and identifying the many unique aspects of responding to an incident involving explosives.

March - Kennywood Amusement Park Exercise

Kennywood Amusement Park and the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security (GOHS) conducted a Prevention and Protection Exercise that focused on the Prevention and Protection mission of GOHS. It is designed to focus on vulnerabilities and capabilities in conjunction with the park’s facility operations. These exercises are designed to engage state, local and federal law enforcement and emergency services and amusement park facilities in various scenarios related to the protection and prevention mission areas in the event of adversarial and terrorist related incidents. It is vital to the continued operations of Kennywood Park to engage in regular events such as this to ensure that all measures are in place to deal with potential and actual incidents. The sharing of information, the cooperation and collaboration of all critical partners is essential to a well-coordinated approach to the threat posed by domestic and international conditions related to amusement parks.

March - Mass Gathering and Large-scale Security Event Symposium

The Governor’s Office of Homeland Security offered a symposium on mass gatherings and large-scale events for law enforcement, public safety personnel, and those individuals directly involved in the hosting and management of these events. An impressive group of over 600 attendees heard from international (Scotland Yard, Royal Canadian Mounted Police) and nationwide subject matter experts including federal and state officials (FBI, DHS, NYPD), who presented at this symposium. 
April - Active Shooter Workshop
The focus of this workshop was on facility preparedness and plan development. It was ideally suited for already existing or proposed Site Emergency Planning Teams (building management, operations, security, major tenants, human resources, first responders, and others) to gather, learn from Department of Homeland Security national presenters, and then use the small group session in the afternoon to define or refine emergency plans.
Unique Training Opportunity
One-day workshop to enhanced preparedness against active shooter incidents through:
· Developing an Emergency Action Plan with guidance from expert instructors
· Identifying strengths, weaknesses, and gaps in physical security and planning considerations via break-out sessions
· Learning how to prevent active shooter incidents by recognizing behavioral indicators on the pathway to violence
· Understanding the history of significant active shooter incidents from survivor stories and expert perspective
 
Enhancing Emergency Planning
Incorporated key elements of successful incident management into planning efforts, such as:
· Developing communication and incident plans for employees
· Building relationships with local first responders
· Coordinating with first responders before, during, and after an incident
· Integrating public affairs into incident management

April - Liberty Place Active Shooter Exercise

One Liberty Place and the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security (GOHS) conducted an Active Shooter Prevention and Protection Exercise. This table top exercise focused on the Prevention and Protection mission of GOHS. It was designed to focus on vulnerabilities and capabilities in conjunction with the building’s operations. These exercises are designed to engage state, local and federal law enforcement and emergency services and commercial facilities in various scenarios related to the protection and prevention mission areas in the event of adversarial and terrorist related incidents. It was vital to the continued operations of One Liberty Place to engage in regular events such as this to ensure that all measures are in place to deal with potential and actual incidents. The sharing of information, the cooperation and collaboration of all critical partners was essential to a well-coordinated approach to the threat posed by domestic and international conditions related to commercial facilities.

June - Chemical Industry Outreach Workshop (partnered with FBI)

The Philadelphia Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Montgomery County Bomb Squad and the Pennsylvania Governor’s Office of Homeland Security presented an improvised explosive workshop for the regions first responders, law enforcement, chemical industry and academia personnel. This workshop was part of the FBI’s National Improvised Explosive Familiarization (NIEF) initiative designed to raise the awareness of the use of common chemicals to produce improvised explosives. The classroom portion of this training was held at Ursinus College and included lectures in the morning focused on FBI initiatives, capabilities and the chemical threat, followed by a lecture from an FBI Special Agent Bomb Technician on Improvised Explosive Devices (IED’s). The afternoon session consisted of a field trip to an explosives range for a live demonstration of various IED’s, most of which can be mixed using common household chemicals.  This demonstration is designed to underscore the potential danger of these chemicals, both in the hands of terrorists as well as juvenile experimenters.
 

June - Cyber Security Webinar: PPD41/National Cyber Incident Response Plan Update

The Pennsylvania Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Office of Cybersecurity and Communications provided a webinar on Presidential Policy Directive - PPD-41, United States Cyber Incident Coordination, and the update on the National Cyber Incident Response Plan. PPD 41 sets forth principles governing the Federal Government’s response to any cyber incident, whether involving government or private sector entities. For significant cyber incidents, this PPD also establishes lead Federal agencies and an architecture for coordinating the broader Federal Government response. This PPD also requires the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security to maintain updated contact information for public use to assist entities affected by cyber incidents in reporting those incidents to the proper authorities. 

 

June - Talen Energy Stadium (Philadelphia Union) Exercise

Talen Energy Stadium (Philadelphia Union) and the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security (GOHS) conducted a Prevention and Protection Exercise. This table top exercise focused on the Prevention and Protection mission of GOHS. It was designed to focus on vulnerabilities and capabilities in conjunction with the stadium’s facility operations. These exercises are designed to engage state, local and federal law enforcement and emergency services and stadium facilities in various scenarios related to the protection and prevention mission areas in the event of adversarial and terrorist related incidents. It is vital to the continued operations of Talen Energy Stadium to engage in regular events such as this to ensure that all measures are in place to deal with potential and actual incidents. The sharing of information, the cooperation and collaboration of all critical partners is essential to a well-coordinated approach to the threat posed by domestic and international conditions related to professional soccer leagues.