"This Privacy Impact Assessment describes the research and development objectives of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology (S&T) Directorate's Human Factors Division Violent Intent Modeling System (VIMS). The goal of VIMS is to determine whether including social and behavioral theories and concepts (from established research) in a software tool that is used to analyze group behaviors and motivations will improve the ability of analysts to identify indicators that could predict group violence. The project will develop a social and behaviorally based framework of theories and concepts that includes modeling and simulation tools to improve the efficiency and accuracy of analysts examining the likelihood of a group choosing violence to achieve its goals. This PIA is necessary because personally identifiable information will be collected as part of the research and development effort. The Human Factors Division (HFD) in the Science and Technology Directorate is charged with researching, developing, and enhancing the analytical capability of DHS to understand the motivation, intent, and behavior of violent groups so it can better prevent group-driven terrorist attacks. There is a significant amount of research available concerning the motivations of individual terrorists, but significantly less information regarding the motivations and behaviors of groups likely to engage in violent activities including terrorism. HFD is funding VIMS to better understand violent groups and to use that understanding to develop an analytical process that DHS can use to improve its abilities to prevent terrorist attacks."
United States Department of Homeland Security: http://www.dhs.gov/