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  1. Science and Technology Directorate
  2. News Room
  3. News Release: DHS Awards Small Business for Soft Target Security Solutions

News Release: DHS Awards $1M to California Small Business for Soft Targets and Crowded Places Security Solutions

Release Date: October 6, 2021

S&T Public Affairs, 202-254-2385

WASHINGTON–The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program recently awarded $999,644.84 to California-based small business Karagozian & Case, Inc. to develop an advanced software capability that enables security professionals to view their environment through a mobile device to identify and mitigate threats toward soft target and crowded places. The research will support ongoing work by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to address security and preparedness in places such as sports venues, shopping venues, schools, and transportation systems.   

“As crowded places continue to be a target for potential assailant attacks, we must provide our security experts with the technology they need to efficiently and effectively mitigate these threats,” said Kathryn Coulter Mitchell, DHS Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Under Secretary for Science and Technology (S&T). “The development of this advanced technology will better prepare and secure soft target areas.” 

The DHS SBIR Program, administered by the DHS Science and Technology Directorate (S&T), selected Karagozian & Case, Inc. for a Phase II award following their successful demonstration of feasibility in Phase I and the proposed Phase II development of their Soft Targets and Crowded Places Security solution. This technology leverages and integrates advanced geographical information systems mapping software, artificial intelligence, augmented reality and machine learning capabilities to view threat environments and visualize various mitigation methods on a mobile device. Karagozian & Case, Inc. will continue their research and development efforts on the development of their Security Mitigation Assessment of Risks and Threats (SMART) software application that will analyze different threat mitigation strategies to effectively assess the elimination and mitigation of security threats to soft targets and crowded places.

“We’re looking toward the most cutting-edge research and technology to help keep Americans safe.” said William Brown, Security Planning Branch Chief for CISA. “We look forward to continuing the efforts started in Phase I with Karagozian & Case, Inc. to assist field personnel in their work with partners to secure public gatherings, venues, and events using these technologies.”

At the completion of the 24-month Phase II contract, SBIR awardees will have developed a prototype to demonstrate the advancement of technology, spearheading the potential for Phase III funding. Under Phase III, SBIR performers will seek to secure funding from private and/or non-SBIR government sources, with the eventual goal to commercialize and bring to market the technologies from Phases I and II.

“SBIR efforts, such as this project, can be the key to assessing and mitigating security risks that face our nation,” said Dusty Lang, DHS SBIR Director. “By partnering with small businesses, we are able to advance technology and remain agile in the way we respond to emerging threats.”

For more information on the DHS SBIR Program, visit: https://oip.dhs.gov/sbir/public or contact STSBIR.Program@hq.dhs.gov. Visit the DHS SBIR Success Stories page to see past projects and visit our Deconstructing SBIR webinar series page for more on the program.

For more information on S&T’s innovation programs and tools, visit: https://www.dhs.gov/science-and-technology/work-with-st.


Last Updated: 10/06/2021
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