By supporting the ability of front line screening agencies to positively identify known or suspected terrorists trying to obtain visas, enter the country, board aircraft, or engage in other activity, the consolidated Terrorist Watchlist is one of the most effective counterterrorism tools for the U.S. government. A number of federal government agencies participate in this mission process.
- The National Counterterrorism Center manages the Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment (TIDE), which serves as the U.S. government’s central repository of information on international terrorist identities as established by the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004. TIDE supports the USG’s various terrorist screening systems or “watchlists” and the U.S. Intelligence Community’s overall counterterrorism mission.
- The Terrorist Screening Center (TSC) maintains the U.S. government’s consolidated Terrorist Watchlist - which supports the ability of front line screening agencies to positively identify known or suspected terrorists trying to obtain visas, enter the country, board aircraft, or engage in other activity. While undertaking these activities, TSC is also dedicated to ensuring the data it stores is maintained in a manner consistent with protecting the privacy and civil liberties of Americans.
- Recently, the Transportation Security Administration completed the deployment of Secure Flight, an aviation security program that enhances the security of domestic and international commercial air travel through the use of improved watchlist matching.
Additionally, in late 2009, DOJ, DHS, and TSC jointly developed an “Encounter Service” that allows designated fusion centers to share positive encounter data with both TSC and other centers to support analysis and information sharing about terrorist activities.
In response to the Christmas Day incident on Northwest Flight 253, the National Security Staff led an effort to develop updated watchlisting guidance that includes improved business processes and rules.
Visit our 2012 Annual Report to the Congress to learn more about improvements to the watchlisting mission process or check out our blog posts tagged with the subjects counterterrorism or intelligence community to learn more about our work in related areas.