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Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Office of Homeland Security

Terrorism: Be Aware. Be Prepared.

Did You Know…?

  • Terrorism has been around as a major political and religious tactic against governments as long as recorded history.
  • The word "terrorism" traces its roots in the English language to the French Revolution (1789-1795), when British statesman Edmund Burke used the term to describe the actions of the Jacobin-dominated French government.
  • Before the September 11, 2001 attacks in New York and the Pentagon, most terrorist incidents in the U.S. have been bombing attacks, involving detonated and undetonated explosive devices, tear gas and pipe and fire bombs.
  • Most terrorist incidents in the U.S. have involved small extremist groups that use terrorism to achieve a designated objective. Local, state and federal law enforcement officials monitor suspected terrorist groups and try to prevent or protect against a suspected attack. In addition, the U.S. government works with other countries to limit the sources of support for terrorism.
  • The National Terrorism Threat Level is assigned by the United States Attorney General in consultation with the Homeland Security Secretary, based on an ongoing analysis of the threat. The FBI's Counterterrorism Division maintains daily interaction with the U.S. Office of Homeland Security and with the intelligence community in the exchange, monitoring, and resolution of threat information.

There are several factors considered when assigning a specific Threat Condition, including:

  • Is the threat credible?
  • Is the threat corroborated?
  • Is the threat specific and/or imminent?
  • How grave is the threat?

What to Do During Your Travels . . .

  • Before visiting a foreign country, research the safety and political nature of the country, specifically against Americans.
  • Leave a detailed itinerary of your trip with a trusted friend or loved one.
  • Do not bring unnecessary attention to yourself, such as wearing patriotic symbols or clothing, expensive jewelry, etc. that may make you a target.
  • Be alert and aware of your surroundings and any conspicuous or unusual behavior.
  • Do not accept packages from strangers. Do not leave your luggage unattended.
  • Learn where emergency exits are located. Think ahead about how to evacuate a building, subway or congested public area in a hurry. Learn where staircases are located.
  • Be aware of heavy or breakable objects nearby that could move, fall or break in an explosion.

For more information, visit Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security's website.