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by CSO Contributor

Boston Appoints Security Director; Manhunt Under Way for Suspect in Ohio Sniper Case; E.U. Calls Emergency Terror Talks; GE Buys InVision for $900 Million

Mar 16, 20043 mins
CSO and CISOData and Information Security

Boston Appoints Security Director

Revamping Bostons public-safety team in time for the Democratic National Convention, Mayor Thomas M. Menino appointed a veteran Drug Enforcement Administration agent yesterday to serve as the citys first director of homeland security. According to a story in The Boston Globe today, Carlo A. Boccia will head up a newly created four-person office that will oversee antiterrorism training and response plans, and administer the $40 million that Boston is slated to receive over four years from the federal Department of Homeland Security. The Globe says that while most states have homeland security coordinators, among the nation’s 10 largest cities, only Houston, San Diego, and Detroit have similar arrangements. Most large cities, including New York, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles, have expanded the purview of existing agencies to include homeland security functions.Manhunt Under Way for Suspect in Ohio Sniper Case reports today that the suspect in a series of shootings that killed one woman and terrorized central Ohio is Charles A. McCoy Jr., a troubled 28-year-old man who lived with his mother near the center of the shooters favored territory. In its coverage, The Toledo Blade, investigators were seeking the public’s help in locating the man, who is considered armed and dangerous, and his car, a 1999 four-door Chevy GEO Metro. Most of the 24 shootings have been at vehicles and buildings along or near the busy I-270 Columbus beltway. Last month the shooter appeared to widen his circle to include portions of I-70 east of the city and I-71.

The Columbus Dispatch

E.U. Calls Emergency Terror TalksBBC News Online, European states have called emergency security meetings as suspicion mounts that Islamic militants were involved in the devastating bomb attacks in Madrid. Intelligence officials are to go to the Spanish capital to discuss improving co-operation, while EU ministers will hold talks on Friday. Security issues also look set to dominate a routine EU summit next week. In a related development, the BBC reports, an emergency meeting of EU interior and justice ministers is planned in Brussels ahead of a European summit on 25-26 March. One idea put forward is for a special commissioner to be appointed to combat the terror threat in Europe.

According to the

GE Buys InVision for $900 MillionThe Oakland Tribune, three years ago, InVision was a sleepy startup company struggling to sell its explosive detection systems for airport baggage. Using X-ray and computed tomography, InVision detection machines are able to distinguish explosives from other objects when baggage is passed through its machines. Prior to Sept. 11, 2001, the company struggled with layoffs and selling its systems. The Tribune says analysts applaud the purchase and said InVision will fit in well with GE’s Infrastructure unit, which develops chemistry-based security equipment. Also on Monday, InVision said it had won a $108 million order from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for bomb-detection systems for U.S. airports.

InVision Technologies, the explosives detection company that saw its fortunes rise after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, has been purchased by General Electric Co. for $900 million, the companies said yesterday. According to a story in