National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS) alerts provide information about terrorist threats by giving timely, detailed information to the public, government agencies, first responders, public sector organizations, airports and other transportation hubs. NTAS alerts also include:
- information about actions being taken to ensure public safety
- recommended steps that individuals, communities, businesses and governments can take to help prevent, mitigate or respond to the threat
The National Terrorism Advisory System, or NTAS, replaced the color-coded Homeland Security Advisory System (HSAS).
NTAS Alerts are only issued when verified information is available. After reviewing the available information, the Secretary of Homeland Security decides, in coordination with other Federal entities, whether an NTAS Alert should be issued.
The NTAS Alerts are based on the nature of the threat. In some cases, alerts are sent directly to law enforcement or affected areas of the private sector; while in other cases, alerts are issued more widely to the American people through both official and media channels.
These alerts include a clear statement that there is an imminent and/or elevated threat to the public.
- An imminent threat warns of a verified, specific, and impending terrorist threat against the United States.
- An elevated threat warns of a verified terrorist threat against the United States.
NTAS Alerts contain a specific date for when the alert expires. The Alerts do not contain constant or wide-ranging warnings regarding overarching threats. If threat information changes for an alert, the Secretary of Homeland Security may announce an updated NTAS Alert. All changes, including the announcement that cancels an NTAS Alert, will be distributed the same way as the original alert.