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Feds warn of terror threat on US soil while cybersecurity remains top priority for Wisconsin courts

By: Steve Schuster, [email protected]//November 16, 2023//

FBI Headquarters Washington, D.C. - Staff Photo

Feds warn of terror threat on US soil while cybersecurity remains top priority for Wisconsin courts

By: Steve Schuster, [email protected]//November 16, 2023//

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On Wednesday, Federal Bureau of Investigation Director Christopher Wray, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas, National Counterterrorism Director Abizaid were expected to warn the U.S. is entering “one of the most dangerous times in history,” FOX News reported.

On Oct. 31, Wray warned Americans “the terrorism threat has been elevated throughout 2023, but the ongoing war in the Middle East has raised the threat of an attack against Americans in the United States to a whole other level.”

During the Senate Homeland Security Committee Wray said FBI has been working “around the clock” to protect Americans at home and abroad.

Specifically mentioning ISIS, Al Qaeda, and Hezbollah, Wray said threat to the homeland includes both enemies foreign and domestic, including violent extremists right here in the United States.

Wray said our enemies are targeting U.S. military, houses of worships for Jews and Muslims, as well as cyberattacks impacting all Americans.

Multiple ongoing investigations are taking place throughout the FBI’s 56 Field Offices with a sense of urgency, Wray noted.

According to Wray, Cyber threats are targeting critical infrastructure. “It is expected to get worse if the Middle-East conflict continues,” Wray said.

As previously reported by the Wisconsin Law Journal, earlier this month during the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s State of Judiciary meeting, Chief Justice Annette Ziegler said cybersecurity remains a top priority for the court system in Wisconsin.

Wray noted the FBI is working with federal, state and local partners in various joint terrorism task forces to mitigate threats.

Also as previously reported by the Wisconsin Law Journal, a Wisconsin woman was called out on social media for praising terrorists.

“Protecting the American people is our number one priority,” Wray said.

“The bottom line is we will continue to do everything in our power to protect the American people and support our partners, Israel.”

As previously reported by the Wisconsin Law Journal, the Wisconsin Statewide Intelligence Center (WSIC), located in the Madison area, is operated by the Wisconsin Department of Justice-Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI), and is one of two fusion centers in Wisconsin. WSIC serves as the primary focal point for threat information sharing among federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement, emergency management, fire service, public health, corrections, military, and private sector partners for the majority of Wisconsin.

Also as previously reported, the FBI Milwaukee Division’s field office includes a “wire tap room,” where FBI Assistant Special Agent in Charge (ASAC) Robert Botsch said often local, state, and federal law enforcement will spend 16-20 consecutive hours in that room listening to wiretaps, emails and text messages in an effort to keep Wisconsinites and the nation safe.

Calling for the renewal of Section 702, Wray said,” it would be devastating if next time, our adversary conducts cyberattack because we can’t see it coming (because 702 wasn’t renewed).”

“Imagine if a foreign terrorist overseas carries out an attack over here but we can’t disrupt it, because 702 wasn’t renewed,” Wray said.

As previously reported by the Wisconsin Law Journal, if Congress fails to reauthorize Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), the United States stands at the brink of a self-inflicted national security calamity.

Officials are also calling for tighter border security as thousands are entering U.S. Soil illegally from Mexico.


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