Progress Report: Information, Intelligence for the Fire Service

Since 9/11, questions have been raised about delivery of information and intelligence to the fire service. In May 2002, the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) and the National Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC) announced that U.S. Fire Administrator...


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All emergency service personnel are eligible for receipt of non-sensitive CIP INFOGRAMs (containing four very short articles about the protection of the critical infrastructures of communities and their emergency responders issued at the end of each week) and CIP Bulletins (containing timely, consequential homeland security information affecting the CIP of emergency management and response agencies published periodically as needed). However, only the department chief and deputy chiefs (second in command) are authorized to receive the Sensitive CIP Notices (these contain emergent, actionable information “For Official Use Only” regarding threats to and vulnerabilities of emergency services critical infrastructures. These notices are published only as needed). While other Information Sharing Analysis Centers may charge fees, all EMR-ISAC services, including notifications, are provided at no cost.

The EMR-ISAC has been working diligently to improve the information-intelligence sharing machine for the fire service. At present, over 2,000 fire department chiefs receive the sensitive CIP information. While much progress has been accomplished over the last two years, more is planned to improve CIP services to emergency agencies.

If you are a fire service leader, make sure that you have followed the instructions on how to receive Critical Infrastructure Protection INFOGRAMs. Fire chiefs and deputy fire chiefs should also follow the instructions to ensure they receive Sensitive CIP Notices. The EMR-ISAC can be contacted at:

U.S. Fire Administration



emr-isac@dhs.gov

Charles Werner, a Firehouse® contributing editor, is a 28-year veteran of the fire service and is deputy fire chief of the Charlottesville, VA, Fire Department. Werner serves on a number of local, state and federal interoperability working groups, and is technology chair for the Virginia Fire Chiefs Association and chair of the Commonwealth of Virginia First Responder Executive Committee. In addition, he serves on the SAFECOM Executive Committee and Advisory Group.