Critical Infrastructure Protection: DHS Needs to Improve Its Risk Assessments and Outreach for Chemical Facilities, Statement of Stephen L. Caldwell, Director, Homeland Security and Justice, Testimony Before the Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies, Committee on Homeland Security, House of Representatives   [open pdf - 269KB]

"Facilities that produce, store, or use hazardous chemicals could be of interest to terrorists intent on using toxic chemicals to inflict mass casualties in the United States. As required by statute, DHS issued regulations that establish standards for the security of high-risk chemical facilities. DHS established the CFATS [Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards] program to assess the risk posed by these facilities and inspect them to ensure compliance with DHS standards. ISCD [Infrastructure Security Compliance Division], which manages the program, places high risk facilities in risk-based tiers and is to conduct inspections after it approves facility security plans. This statement summarizes the results of GAO's [Government Accountability Office] April 2013 report on the extent to which DHS (1) assigned chemical facilities to tiers and assessed its approach for doing so, (2) revised its process to review facility security plans, and (3) communicated and worked with owners and operators to improve security. GAO reviewed DHS reports and plans on risk assessments, security plan reviews, and facility outreach and interviewed DHS officials. GAO also received input from 11 trade associations representing chemical facilities, about ISCD outreach. The results of this input are not generalizable but provide insights. […] In its April 2013 report, GAO recommended that DHS enhance its risk assessment approach to incorporate all elements of risk, conduct a peer review after doing so, and explore opportunities to gather systematic feedback on facility outreach. DHS concurred with the recommendations and has actions underway to address them."

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Government Accountability Office: http://www.gao.gov/
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