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Government Accountability Office, Information Sharing: Federal Agencies Are Helping Fusion Centers Build and Sustain Capabilities and Protect Privacy, but Could Better Measure Results (GAO-10-972) (Sept. 29, 2010) (full-text).


Since 2001, all 50 states and some local governments have established fusion centers, where homeland security, terrorism, and other intelligence information is shared. The federal government recognizes the importance of fusion centers; however, as GAO reported in October 2007, centers face challenges in sustaining their operations. GAO was asked to assess the extent to which (1) the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has taken action to support fusion centers' efforts to maintain and grow their operations, and (2) DHS and the Department of Justice (DOJ) have supported fusion centers in establishing privacy and civil liberties protections.

The GAO recommended that DHS define steps to develop and implement standard performance measures for centers and commit to a timeframe for completing them. DHS concurred and described steps it is taking to address the recommendation.