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Physical Security

Crowd of people walking through shopping mall. Security personnel need a way to safely detect potential threats concealed on people and in their bags during events or taking mass transit, while maintaining personal privacy and not impacting their flow of travel. This Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) program is collaborating with Department of Homeland Security component stakeholders, security personnel, and our technology development partners to close the security gap through innovative technologies designed to work together and provide screening coverage of unstructured crowds.

Events of national and/or international importance require federal support to characterize the operational environment in physical security. To enable support, a threat and site physical security assessment initiates the analysis for a soft target and the event is given a Special Event Assessment Rating (SEAR). Threat and site security assessments drive event stakeholders to create a robust, dynamic, holistic, and specific physical security plan. Although SEAR 1 and SEAR 2 events receive federal support in some capacity, the overwhelming majority of the SEAR events that are submitted are rated 3-5, and do not receive any assistance. The support for these events then falls generally to the regional/local DHS partner, such as the regional Protective Security Advisor. These SEAR events are often considered mass gatherings and S&T is developing and improving a suite of Special Event Planning Tools (SEPT) to assist field staff to work with events planners to enhance the security of their sites.  S&T is also engaged in analyzing SEAR methodology to recommend improvements and develop a tool for streamlining the SEAR process.

Learn more about us and discover how your organization can partner with S&T to make the homeland more secure.

Last Updated: 05/20/2024
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