InfraGard 2005 National Conference (hosted by the InfraGard National Members Alliance and the FBI) has a track called “Taking Aim at Our Nationג€™s Drinking Water”:
As security tightens around airports and other facilities, terrorists are acquiring targets that are easier to reach. These easier to reach targets are called ג€soft targetsג€ because of their relaxed security, easy access, critical nature to our nations well-being, and, when struck, create fear and paralyze large groups of people.
Drinking water is the ultimate soft target. It is a necessity of life. It is a critical and emotionally-charged component of our nationג€™s infrastructure. Drinking water is easily accessible with security being erratic to non-existent. Additionally, drinking water and its distribution systems are acutely susceptible to widespread contamination by readily available nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons.
Consciously-contaminated drinking water will, at a minimum, cause the economy to stall, stop business activities and transportation, close schools and churches, interrupt governmental affairs, destroy the publicג€™s trust in their public officials, and negatively-impact source water supplies (aquifers, reservoirs, lakes, and rivers). The aftermath of a single event is expected to cost billions of dollars.
Year 2002 amendments to the U.S. Safe Drinking Water Act have made our nationג€™s drinking water an even softer target. As a result of these amendments, by July, 2004 drinking water providers inspected, categorized, cataloged, and reported their respective vulnerabilities and weaknesses to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. A Federally-mandated repository of those findings now exists that paints a bulls-eye on drinking water. This repository is a simple, plain-English map to all of drinking waterג€™s softest and most vulnerable spots.
Our nation has thoughtfully, deliberately, and conscientiously provided the intelligence data that allows the enemy to take deliberate aim at our drinking water with knowledge-based nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons.
The same U.S. Safe Drinking Water Act amendments, as well as State laws, have also mandated that responsible people take deliberate aim to resolve and eliminate the multitude of identified, cataloged, and exposed problems. As those who wish to harm us take deadly aim at drinking water to impede its flow, contaminate it, and destroy our way of life; then we, as responsible people and citizens, must also take a sharpshooterג€™s aim at drinking water security and protection.
Drinking water security and protection is a prudent and realistic goal. Because we are aware of drinking waterג€™s problems we can now begin to implement safe, cost-effective systems to monitor, detect, and prevent nuclear, chemical, and biological contamination and disruption of our drinking water supply.
- Provide an overview and rationale for implementation of drinking water security measures
- Outline management and operational considerations for enhancing physical security
- Review design considerations for developing physical security
- Present guidelines for selecting optimal physical security equipment
- Describe cyber security management, operations, and design considerations
- Enhance emergency response planning capabilities
- Present a systematic approach to a fully integrated plan for drinking water security
Full details and track sessions can be found at InfraGard web site.