Cranford, NJ, June 27, 2008 --(PR.com
)-- After the 9/11 disaster, Jack Shulman, head of computer manufacturer Compamerica (http://www.compamerica.com) and co-chair of the American Computer Science Association Inc. (ACSA, http://ACSA.net), after attending funerals of several friends who were lost in the World Trade Center 9/11, after the Anthrax attack on Microsoft Corporation’s offices in the Midwest, decided to see if he and the computer industry could work together to make a difference.
Out of meetings with executives throughout the industry, with the FBI, with representatives of the White House and the newly formed Department of Homeland Security, came the idea in early 2002, of organizing “Security of America: Computer Companies United Against Terrorism” (CCUAT).
Ever since, CCUAT has without asking for anything in return, been trying to help by ferreting out information that might not otherwise be reported to the US Government and encouraging it’s being reported.
“We came to believe that the US Government could better defend America’s homeland, if it had the benefit of the brilliant minds throughout the computer industry to help solve the many nearly impossible security problems facing America.” states Dr. Shulman, himself a 40 year veteran of the computer industry.
“Most computer companies work the world over, here, in Central Asia and the Middle East, Africa, South America, as well as at home. We’d be in a position that somewhere, one of our members might learn of a plot against the USA and be in a position to report it with considerable detail. So, we set up a clearing house at the ACSA for anyone wishing to report something, back in 2002. Anything that bears up under scrutiny receives a recommended point of contact inside the US Government for the information provider to report it to.”
“Borrowing from past experience and at the suggestion of the United States Attorney General John Ashcroft’s office, we pursued the concept of creating CCUAT.org and getting more people involved making up what might be called the largest ‘Neighborhood Watch’ program in human history: all companies aware and listening and looking for any information that might help the US Government pre-empt terror attack.”
After appearing on a number of radio broadcasts advocating the Ready.gov DHS website, Dr. Shulman recently spoke to a gathering of interest web citizens on a broadcast to answer questions about CCUAT and how to also get the word out about http://Ready.gov. Ready.gov, the DHS’s emergency preparations website, hosts a very clear and concise list of things to do in order to be prepared in advance of any terrorist attack.
“We must not allow time to create so great a bureaucracy, that our Government loses its eyes and ears on the ground: everyday businesses and citizens who may be the difference if it comes down to a possible attack against the US. We don’t want another 9/11 to occur because the government is not being reported the right leads."
"We don’t get a very large number of reports at CCUAT.org anymore, but the ones we do today tend to be much more detailed and we do recommend many of them contact their state DHS office or regional Federal DHS office, and confirm whether they should be made into a full report, sometimes we try to help confirm them so the Government does not find themselves burdened with a seemingly reasonable but unverifiable report. When we determine nothing classified exists in said materials, if we can confirm some part of the report, we may or may not publish an Alert on our website.”
“CCUAT Alerts are not government sanctioned and are unaffiliated with any government agency. Nor do we have the resources in house to confirm them to the level the government does. However, in good conscience, if we hear of something that seems to be a threat and we believe the public has a right to know, then we encourage it being reported to the appropriate public interface. If we learn of some outstanding condition of threat to the public, we sometimes publish an Alert on the CCUAT / Advances Magazine website: http://www.securityofamerica.com with the understanding that the information is entirely hearsay or unsubstantiated. Nonetheless, we do so to insure that no stone is unturned, that the people have a right to know, and that we are sure that the Government doesn’t mind our being open to receiving reports from our industry and directing the reporting parties on to the proper Government Agency.”
“There are a fair number of people who have had very bad experiences trying to report legitimate leads to Government, and as word has spread, many simply won’t. As a result, we believe the effectiveness of our Government Counter Terror Investigation Agencies could eventually become severely reduced again, despite vast improvements in their Information Technologies, Training and Responsiveness since 9/11.”
“Eliminating Turf warfare and negative responses to constructive criticism and the evolution of a clear eye on how to assist the public in verifying information and gathering that which is useful, without scaring the public off is vital. Heavy handedness by any government agency towards the public, could become a self defeating bad behavior that harms those Agencies by giving pundits who falsely claim the War Against Terrorism is a figment of the Bush Administration fuel to fuel the fires of self-destruction. Terrorism is a very real danger every day against America. We must not allow our most important Agencies become blinded or be blind sided nor come to think of the public as its enemy. We must encourage them to be patient and thorough and not demonize or criminalize public reporters. We must not allow the political winds of change in America lead to disastrous reductions in their funding and resources as a result of the next administration using allegations of heavy handedness or bad behavior as an excuse to reduce their funding, or even just on the excuse of the alleged loss of civil liberties!” he added.
“After the end of the Cold War, America’s Civil Defense System fell into disarray, Norad and our readiness to send Air Force responses to missile and jetliner attacks fell below a level of timeliness that could ever have intercepted 9/11, and our awareness as a country diminished into a near malaise of false sense of security. Not so the countries and terror nations allied against us. They have steadily been improving their inventory of means to make war and terror. There will likely never be a day any time in the future that it will be appropriate to let down our guard as we did during the 8 years of fool’s paradise from 1993 to 2000. We closed military bases, wound down Norad, and everything else that then made us vulnerable. All it takes for an enemy like Al Qaeda to bring on an attack in this world is when in point of fact it believes us to be vulnerable. We must never forget that.”
CCUAT.org is in diligent operation 365 days a year and may be found on the internet at http://www.securityofamerica.com and at http://www.ccuat.org, the CCUAT / Advances Magazine website. CCUAT publishes on the internet under the premises of Freedom of Speech and Freedom Of Press. CCUAT is supported by the American Computer Scientists Association Inc.