State and major urban area fusion centers (fusion centers) and the Joint Terrorism Task Forces (JTTFs) led by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) help protect our nation by serving as valuable conduits for sharing vital homeland security information and countering domestic terrorism.
However, these field-based information sharing organizations each play a unique yet complimentary role in securing the Homeland. Fusion centers lawfully gather, analyze, and share comprehensive crimes, hazards, and terrorism information to inform local, regional, and national threat analysis and prevention efforts. In contrast, JTTFs primarily focus on providing investigative support to open FBI counterterrorism investigations.
Fusion Centers vs. Joint Terrorism Task Forces
Joint Terrorism Task Forces
Focus on terrorism, criminal, and public safety matters in support of securing communities and enhancing the national threat picture.
Focus primarily on terrorism and other criminal matters related to various aspects of the counterterrorism mission.
Receive, analyze, gather, produce, and disseminate a broad array of threat-related information and actionable intelligence to appropriate law enforcement and homeland security agencies.
Conduct counter-terrorism investigations and provide information for assessments and intelligence products that are shared, when appropriate, with law enforcement and homeland security agencies.
Owned and operated by state and local authorities and include federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial (SLTT), and private sector partners from multiple disciplines (including law enforcement, public safety, fire service, emergency response, public health, and critical infrastructure).
Multi-jurisdictional task forces managed by the FBI, and include other federal and SLTT law enforcement partners which together act as an integrated force to combat terrorism on a national and international scale.
Collaborative Efforts of Fusion Centers and Joint Terrorism Task Forces
Fusion centers and JTTFs collaboratively leverage their analytic and investigative capabilities to safeguard our homeland and prevent criminal and terrorist activities.
The following success stories highlight instances where fusion centers exchanged information with JTTFs, including providing important terrorism-related tips and leads to JTTFs for investigation:
- In May 2013, fusion centers passed critical information to a JTTF that enabled the disruption of an alleged hate group plot;
- In October 2011, a JTTF contributed information to a fusion center product notifying state law enforcement about armed suspects, resulting in an arrest;
- In June 2011, information exchanged between a fusion center and a JTTF lead to an arrest of individual responsible for attempted bomb plot;
- In May 2010, fusion centers provided important information to a JTTF on Faisal Shahzad, the individual behind the attempted Times Square bombing;
- In March 2010, a fusion center shared information with the local JTTF which helped the FBI further investigate a woman arrested for terrorism; and,
- In May 2008, fusion center coordination with a JTTF led to a federal grand jury indictment of individuals charged with making bomb threats.