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Investigators Baffled by Discovery of 4 Dry Ice Bombs at Los Angeles Airport

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Authorities are dumbfounded after more dry ice explosions at a Los Angeles Airport on Monday night, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Investigators are trying to determine how someone placed four dry ice bombs – two of which detonated – at restricted areas.

The devices apparently were found outside the terminal near planes, according to the Times.

No one was injured when one of the ice bombs detonated Sunday in a restroom.

FBI’s Facial-Recognition Technology Could Fail Up to 20% of the Time

Courtesy of RecognitionSource.net

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The FBI has said its facial-recognition technology is a critical component of fighting the war on terror and other serious threats.

But new records indicate the technology could fail 20% of the time, the National Journal reports.

“An innocent person may become part of an investigation because the technology isn’t completely accurate,” said Jeramie Scott, an attorney with EPIC who reviewed the documents, citing the Boston Marathon bombings as an example. “They’re pushing it forward even though the technology isn’t ready for prime time.”

The FBI could’t be reached for comment.

The technology is part of the FBI’s Next Generation Identification program, which includes iris and fingerprint scans.

 

NSA Collecting E-Mail, IM Contacts in Worldwide Surveillance Program

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The NSA is collecting e-mail and instant messaging contacts from people worldwide in an attempt to keep an eye on relationships that suspects have with others, the USA Today reported.

The idea is to identify any troubling relationships.

“You need the haystack to find the needle,” said Gen. Keith B. Alexander, NSA director, as saying in defense of the bulk collection.

Many of the email contacts are from Americans.

NSA officials couldn’t be reached for comment.

 

West Virginia Homeland Security Officer Critically Shot at Home Near Charleston

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The training coordinator for the West Virginia Division of Homeland Security was shot in the chest and was in critical condition as of late Monday, the West Virginia Gazette reports.

Frank Kennedy was found at his home near Charleston where he apparently shot himself intentionally.

Kennedy underwent surgery Sunday night and remained in critical condition, hospital officials said.

State Homeland Security Director Jimmy Gianato said he couldn’t confirm whether the shooting was intentional.

“At this point he’s in the hospital,” Gianato told the Gazette. “The last we heard he was in the ICU.”

 OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Border Patrol Agents Continue to Work With Less Pay

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Border Patrol agents will begin receiving smaller paychecks because of the government shutdown, the Monitor reports.

“It’s going to have a severe negative impact because people still have to pay bills,” said Agent Paul Perez, president of National Border Patrol Council Local 3307, the sector union. “Unless their creditors are willing to work with them individually, it’s going to create havoc for their household finances.”

Despite the paycheck cuts, the agents are still required to work full-time.

The agents were receiving whole paychecks because of reserves, but those have run out.

Other federal employees have already felt the pinch.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

FBI Increases Number of Digital Billboards Along Highways Nationwide

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI’s digital billboard program started as a one-city pilot in Philadelphia in 2007 and exploded into 3,200 locations nationwide today, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reports.

The increase is due to the program’s success, the FBI said.

“We reach a wider audience,” said FBI Special Agent Barbara Woodruff, a spokeswoman for the Newark field office. “We have access to these billboards in times of extreme importance, to include national emergencies, fugitive-related cases and kidnappings.”

The idea is to reach millions of motorists who could help locate dangerous criminals and kidnap victims.

The digital billboards generally feature a photo of a fugitive, the crime and a phone number to call, the Dispatch reported.

Secret Service investigates Increasing Number of Credit Card “Skimming” Cases

krebsonsecurity.com/all-about-skimmers

krebsonsecurity.com/all-about-skimmers

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

When you hand over your credit card, be careful what happens to it.

The Secret Service is reporting an increasing number of cases of credit card “skimming,” or thieves copying information on the card, the South Jersey Times reports.

The information, such as the name, card number and expiration date, often is sold to someone else, who uses it to make purchases.

“Sometimes in a restaurant, or at a gas station, an employee takes that card, and they’re paid by someone else for the information on it,” said Cynthia Wofford, Special Agent in charge of the Secret Service’s Philadelphia field office.

Feds Bust Underage Sex Slave Operation in Houston Area

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

A federal investigation has broken up an alleged sex slave operation involving girls as young as 14 and 15 years old in the Houston area, ABC 13 reports.

Several people are in custody after agents raided Houston bars that doubled as brothels Thursday, according to feds.

An indictment recently obtained by ABC 13 accuses the suspects of running an underage sex slave operation since 1999.

The victims were women and girls from Mexico, according to ABC 13.

“I think most of you will agree that nowhere in the world, especially right here in Houston, in our United States, should any human being be trafficked for profit or used as a reusable commodity,” said FBI special-agent-in-charge Stephen Morris.