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DHS Increases HSIN Access to Campus Public Safety

August 16 2017

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is committed to sharing timely, relevant, and accurate information with its campus safety and law enforcement partners. Recently, members of the campus safety and law enforcement community raised questions about access to intelligence and analytic products, noting that these items are essential for maintaining situational awareness and safety.

To meet these needs, the Office of Partnership and Engagement/Office for State and Local Law Enforcement (OPE/OSLLE), with assistance from the DHS Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A), is facilitating requests for Homeland Security Information Network (HSIN) membership for interested campus safety/police departments.

What is HSIN?

HSIN is the Department’s primary mechanism for sharing Sensitive But Unclassified (SBU) information, and will often be the sole vehicle for campus police departments to access DHS intelligence products. Federal, state, local, territorial, tribal, international and private sector homeland security partners use HSIN to manage operations, analyze data, send alerts and notices, and in general, share the information they need to do their jobs. Considering the sensitive nature of the products, HSIN is the primary venue for campus police departments to access DHS intelligence products. In general, applicants must be sworn police officers; however, non-sworn campus safety officers who are sponsored by their local municipal police department may be eligible for access to specific communities. For example, non-sworn campus safety officers sponsored by a municipal law enforcement agency may be eligible for access to the HSIN Law Enforcement community

Information posted to HSIN originates from stakeholders responsible for many aspects of homeland security operations (e.g., fusion centers, state and local police departments), so users can be confident in the products’ analyses and conclusions. In addition to receiving access to DHS products, authorized users may post their own publications (e.g., alerts, fact sheets, BOLOs) to share information with neighboring jurisdictions or request information from other departments. Examples of previously posted products related to campus safety include the DHS/Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting (SAR) Initiative (NSI) Campus Safety Fact Sheet, intelligence bulletins, and assessments on threats to special events or critical infrastructure.

Non-sworn campus public safety officials are encouraged to apply for HSIN access; however, it is important to note that HSIN access is granted only to individuals who satisfy each community’s eligibility requirements.

HSIN Communities

We believe campus safety and law enforcement partners should review the following list of communities for potential membership, based on access requirements:

Law Enforcement (HSIN-LE): This community contains advisories, BOLOs, requests for information, situational awareness alerts, DHS/FBI Joint Intelligence Bulletins, Field Analysis Reports, officer safety bulletins, and other products for sworn law enforcement officers and analysts supporting law enforcement officers. Documents may be sorted by region (e.g., Northeast, West) or state to enable stakeholders to focus on the information that will be of most use to their departments.

Eligibility Requirements: To obtain HSIN LE access, the applicant must be a current employee or contractor of a federal, state, territorial, tribal, or local government. Non-sworn law enforcement officers sponsored by their local municipal police department may also be eligible for HSIN access. In addition, the applicant must be one or more of the following:

  1. A law enforcement officer sworn pursuant to federal, territorial, state, county or municipal law.
  2. A law enforcement analyst; or an intelligence analyst engaged in law enforcement activities.
  3. Engaged in a job function and/or duties recognized by DHS OPS as law enforcement activities.
  4. Affiliated with the criminal justice system; provided that such applicants will be considered on a case by case basis as determined by their role offering direct support to the Criminal Justice System. For the purposes of this community, the Criminal Justice System consists of law enforcement agencies, to include sworn members of campus police departments, correction agencies, probation and parole entities, and prosecuting attorney’s offices on federal, territorial, state, local, and tribal levels.
  5. Active duty military and/or a soldier in a reserve or National Guard who is engaged in a law enforcement activity; provided that such applicants will be reviewed on a case by case basis.  Applicants within this category must be sponsored by a DHS approved law enforcement agency.

Intelligence (HSIN-Intel): This community contains intelligence products from state and major urban area fusion centers, as well as federal agencies, including DHS, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, among others. 

Eligibility Requirements: To receive HSIN-Intel membership, applicants must meet the following criteria. Please note access to this portal must be approved by the fusion center in the requestors Area of Responsibility (AOR); therefore, all requestors must have a standing relationship with their fusion centers.

  1. Directly support information and intelligence analysis, sharing, or collection activities.
  2. Be a U.S. Citizen.
  3. Be a full-time, current employee of a law enforcement, criminal justice, intelligence, or homeland security government agency (have a government email address).
  4. Be associated with a fusion center, as verified by the fusion center, or other centralized intelligence capability (i.e. RISS center, HIDTA, EPIC, NORTHCOM, etc.) recognized by the HSIN-Intel Program Office.

Emergency Service (HSIN-ES): This community is designed to share critical infrastructure protection and emergent threat information relevant to the Emergency Services Sector (ESS) from federal, state, local, tribal, territorial, and private sector partners. 

HSIN-ES contains:

  • National level reports on disaster response and recovery to support all phases of emergency operations, including daily situational reports from FEMA, NOAA, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) National Operations Center (NOC), and the National Infrastructure Coordinating Center (NICC).
  • For Official Use Only (FOUO), Law Enforcement Sensitive (LES), and Open-Source information products from various federal agencies, the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), and state and local fusion centers relevant to the Emergency Services Sector.

Eligibility Requirements: The HSIN-ES site is open to active law enforcement, fire, emergency medical services, emergency management, emergency communications, and public works personnel at the federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial level. 

Campus safety and police officers are strongly encouraged to apply for HSIN access and membership to the aforementioned applicable and appropriate communities. If you have any questions, please email David Hampton at David.Hampton@hq.dhs.gov

Registration Process

HSIN is composed of communities that focus on a specific homeland security-related topic, function, or office. These communities serve as information-sharing hubs, providing SBU alerts, advisories, intelligence reports, and other critical information. Individual agencies/entities (e.g., DHS program offices, States, sectors, etc.) administer communities and vet applicants’ requests for membership. To receive access to an individual community, applicants must meet the eligibility criteria required by that respective community. When applying for HSIN and community access, applicants are required to provide the following information:

  • First and Last Name
  • Valid Work Email Address (applicants must use their department-issued email address)
  • Requested Communities of Interest (See “HSIN Communities”, below)
  • Reason for Access

To ensure timely processing of applications, OSLLE will compile applications from each campus and submit them to the relevant program office. Please note access is granted to individuals, not departments. This registration process will enable OSLLE to follow up on behalf of each applicant and notify him or her when his or her request for access is approved. In the event a request for access is denied, OSLLE will contact the respective program office to determine whether or not the applicant meets any other eligibility criteria. If you have any questions regarding HSIN or would like to request access to the law enforcement, intelligence, and emergency services, please contact David Hampton, OSLLE, at David.Hampton@hq.dhs.gov and provide the required information (i.e., name, email address, requested communities of interest, and reason for access).


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