Frequently Asked Questions
What is a fusion center?
A fusion center is an actual physical structure where government, security and public safety partners collaboratively work together sharing information, developing intelligence, maximizing resources, streamlining operations and analyzing data to improve the ability to fight crime and terrorism.
Why do we need a fusion center?
September 11, 2001, illuminated the inadequacies of information and intelligence sharing efforts and practices among law enforcement agencies. The National Criminal Intelligence Sharing Plan and fusion centers are the first crucial steps to help prevent future tragedies and to fight crime more resourcefully.
Who will be involved with MIOC?
Michigan's state fusion center includes active participation by federal, tribal, state, and local law enforcement partners along with state departments of Military and Veterans Affairs and Corrections respectively. Liaisons with state agencies participating in homeland security initiatives have been established and are involved as active participants. Additional partnerships are being developed with public safety agencies and private partners responsible for protecting Michigan's critical infrastructures. The Michigan State Police are responsible for the Michigan Intelligence Operations Division's (MIOC) direction and management; however, all agencies participate in guiding the mission and operations of the center.
Who has access to fusion center information?
Individuals have rights to privacy. Our Constitution reflects values that are deeply rooted and cherished by American culture. The real or perceived violation of privacy or constitutional rights will not be tolerated. Fusion centers operate in accordance with laws governing intelligence investigations, records retention, and release of information.
How will the fusion center assist my agency?
By managing the flow of information and turning intelligence into actionable knowledge, fusion centers support law enforcement, public safety, and the private sector. By analyzing data from different sources, the fusion center supports efforts to address immediate or emerging threat related circumstances and events. At the same time, it supports the implementation of risk-based, information driven prevention, response, and consequence management programs.
How can the public or a police agency take a more active role in the fusion center?
The safety of our communities is only as strong as the commitment of every citizen. It is the responsibility of each person to watch for unusual activities that appear unjustifiable or criminal behavior.
Each jurisdiction or region will determine what level of involvement it desires. Advances in technology will facilitate information sharing and participation.
A police or public safety agency can also take a more pro-active role by designating an Intelligence Liaison Officer, committing a full time analyst or officer, participating in Intelligence and Anti-Terrorism Training, or through sharing information and intelligence. Learn more about our local law enforcement training opportunities.
What will be the involvement of the private sector?
The private sector has an important role to play in the protection of our nation's critical infrastructure, as they desire to protect their assets, employees, and customers. Additionally, they provide important sources of information as private sector security often has better observation capabilities and knowledge of the activities occurring around their local facilities and around the world. This data will be useful to a fusion center analyst in identifying emerging trends or threats.