It’s one of the best defenses against violent acts, and it’s something everyone is capable of doing. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is holding their “If You See Something, Say Something” campaign, encouraging Hoosiers to be vigilant in monitoring and reporting suspicious activities. According to a survey released earlier this week, 56 percent of Americans say they hadn’t heard of the campaign, but in light of the incident at the Boston Marathon and the data from the report, the Indiana DHS, state police, and city of Indianapolis Department of Public Safety are doing everything they can to bring forth this message and shed some light on this campaign.
On the positive side, 57 percent of respondents indicated that they were willing to meet with homeland security or local police to talk about reporting suspicious activity. IDHS Executive Director John Hill said citizen awareness is one of the best partners the organization has against manmade crises, and the average person needs to know that their input is critical to preventing violent situations.
To report suspicious activity, contact on-site security, local law enforcement’s non-emergency line or the Indiana Intelligence Fusion Center at 1-877-226-1026. If violence is imminent, call 9-1-1.
When reporting suspicious behavior, it is important to take note of several key details: when and where you witnessed the behavior and any description of individuals involved such as gender, age, physical description and unique characteristics. Also take note of any vehicles involved, make and model of the vehicle, and its direction of travel.
Examples of suspicious activity include individuals monitoring personnel, testing security, unusual or prolonged interest in security measures, or purposely placing objects in sensitive areas to observe response. For example, a person taking photos at a high profile event is not unusual in itself, but if that person is only taking photos of security cameras or personnel, that activity would be suspicious.
For more information on the See Something, Say Something campaign visit http://www.dhs.gov/if-you-see-something-say-something-campaign or getprepared.in.gov.