About the Emergency Management and Response - Information Sharing and Analysis Center (EMR-ISAC)

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The mission of the Emergency Management & Response - Information Sharing & Analysis Center (EMR-ISAC) is the promotion of critical infrastructure protection, and to serve as a major information sharing mechanism for the collection, research, collaboration and dissemination of critical infrastructure protection and emerging threat information to Emergency Services Sector departments and agencies nationwide.

What Assistance Does the EMR-ISAC Provide?

The EMR-ISAC disseminates critical infrastructure protection (CIP) and threat information through Department of Homeland Security (DHS) information sharing mechanisms, and provides no-cost technical assistance CIP consultation services to Emergency Services Sector (ESS) leaders.

The EMR-ISAC routinely publishes:

The EMR-ISAC maintains Communities of Interests (COI) on the Homeland Security Information Network (HSIN) portal to share CIP and emergent threat information relevant to the ESS from federal, state, local, tribal, territorial and private sector partners.

ESS personnel currently in leadership positions in their respective departments and agencies, who subscribe for EMR-ISAC CIP information, may also be eligible to receive “For Official Use Only” (FOUO) information.

Emergency Services Sector (ESS) Overview

Protecting and ensuring the continuity and resilience of the Critical Infrastructure and Key Resources (CIKR) of the United States are essential to the Nation’s security, public health and safety, economic vitality and way of life. To that end, Homeland Security Presidential Directive 7 (HSPD-7) has identified the Emergency Services Sector as one of the Nation’s 18 CIKR Sectors.

The ESS is a system of response and recovery elements that forms the Nation's first line of defense and prevention and reduction of consequences from any terrorist attack. It is a sector of trained and tested personnel, plans, redundant systems, agreements and pacts that provide life safety and security services across the Nation via the first responder community comprised of federal, state, local, tribal, territorial and private sector partners.

The ESS is representative of the following first-responder disciplines: emergency management, emergency medical services, fire, hazardous material, law enforcement, bomb squads, tactical operations/special weapons assault teams and search and rescue. All first-responders within the ESS are individuals possessing specialized training from one or more of these disciplines.

The ESS has numerous interdependencies with all CIKR sectors. Most notably, it is the primary protector for all CIKR, including nuclear reactors, chemical plants and dams. All other CIKR facilities depend on the ESS to assist with planning, prevention and mitigation activities, as well as respond to day-to-day incidents and catastrophic situations.

What are ESS Critical Infrastructures?

The critical infrastructures of the ESS are the personnel and resources that must remain operational in order to ensure the preparedness of ESS departments and agencies across the country, while supporting the prevention, protection, response and recovery efforts of all homeland security partners.

What is Critical Infrastructure Protection (CIP)?

Generally, CIP consists of the proactive measures to protect essential personnel and resources from all hazards. More formally, it is an analytical process to guide the systematic protection of critical infrastructures by the application of a decision method that assists leaders to determine what critical resource need protection and when protective and resiliency measures must occur.

The process involves the following steps

  1. Identifying the organization’s critical infrastructures.
  2. Determining the threats against those infrastructures.
  3. Analyzing the vulnerabilities of threatened infrastructures.
  4. Assessing the risks of ruin or loss of a critical infrastructure.
  5. Applying preventative or resiliency measures where loss is unacceptable.

Who is Responsible for CIP?

Community leaders, including those of emergency response organizations, have the responsibility to take an all-hazards approach to determine which infrastructures must be protected.