This page has been archived.


Alaska ranks 39th of 50 states in the number of domestically focused counterterrorism and homeland security organizations (tied with Maine), and 28th overall in organizations established or newly involved in counterterrorism since 9/11 (tied with New Jersey and North Carolina). In dollar amount, the state ranked 43rd in fiscal 2009 in federal homeland security spending and 45th in domestic preparedness and antiterrorism programs. Measured per capita, the state ranked 1st in overall federal government expenditures.

U.S. intelligence and homeland security agencies and the Justice Department measure the potential terrorist threat to Alaska by analyzing data, including the following: * There have been no international terrorism arrests in Alaska since 9/11. * The state is one of 15 that have had no terrorism convictions since 9/11, according to the Justice Department. * Alaska has no urban metropolitan areas that have been designated by the federal government as "high-threat, high-density" with regard to acts of terrorism. Alaska's proximity to Russia (and formerly, the Soviet Union) and its vast expanse has always meant that the military -- both active duty and National Guard -- has dominated the state's security landscape. The state constitution establishes a policy of maximum local self-government, with only four of Alaska's 16 organized boroughs and municipalities having government-run emergency services similar to the county and town agencies in the lower 48 states. The state Office of Homeland Security, established after 9/11, exists within the Alaska Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. Alaska has been among the last states to develop a state-level fusion center, which is not yet fully operational. In February 2002, the Pentagon established a new Joint Task Force Alaska (JTF-AK) to focus exclusively on Alaska homeland defense. Today it is one of only three NORTHCOM statewide task forces (the others are in Hawaii and the District of Columbia, covering the national capital region). The Coast Guard District for Alaska, one of nine in the country, is only one of two (the other is in Hawaii) that have geographic responsibility for a single state.

State security snapshot

Organizations working on homeland security and counterterrorism: 38

Organizations that started this work after 9/11: 12

68.4% Pre-9/11

31.6% Post-9/11

Skip chart

Note: Please upgrade your Flash plug-in to view our enhanced content.

Preview below...


Alaska is located in FEMA Region X; the Defense Coordinating Office responsible for brokering and arranging federal military support for the state is located in Seattle.

Law Enforcement
Law Enforcement
Includes organizations at the federal, state and local levels that have the police powers to make arrests and investigate criminal matters.
Emergency Management
Emergency Management
Organizations tasked with responding to natural disasters, attacks using weapons of mass destruction and other emergencies.
Homeland Security
Homeland Security
Organizations responsible for activities -- such as infrastructure protection, border control and planning for the aftermath of terrorist attacks -- handled mainly by the Department of Homeland Security.
Organizations, such as the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Forces, that work exclusively on terrorism cases.
Joint Terrorism Task Force
A multiagency task force, run by the FBI, that has the lead in investigating terrorism within the United States.
Intelligence and Fusion
Organizations that collect, analyze and share information about domestic threats.
Fusion Centers
Fusion Center
A place where information from multiple agencies in a state or region is sent to be analyzed.
Totals 2116138


  • Counterterrorism

    The Alaska Joint Terrorism Task Force is in Anchorage, co-located with Alaska's fusion center. The Anti-Terrorism Advisory Council of Alaska (ATACA) in Anchorage is chaired jointly by the U.S. attorney and the state adjutant general.

  • Intelligence

    Alaska is a member of the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) and the Western States Information Network (WSIN). At the federal level, the FBI's Anchorage Field Intelligence Group, co-located with the Alaska Statewide Law Enforcement Information Center (SLEIC), leads the intelligence effort. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement Field Intelligence Group in Seattle has jurisdiction over the state of Alaska.

  • Fusion

    The Alaska Statewide Law Enforcement Information Center (SLEIC), which is located in the FBI field office in Anchorage, has served as the interim state fusion center while the Alaska Information Analysis Center (AKIAK), the state-designated fusion center, is being established. When fully operational, AKIAK will be the conduit for information-sharing, focusing on homeland security, terrorism, criminal activity and all hazards within and surrounding the state of Alaska.

  • Homeland Security

    The Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, within the Alaska Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA), is the focal point for coordinating the state's efforts to prevent terrorist attacks, reduce Alaska's vulnerability to terrorism, and minimize the loss of life or damage to critical infrastructure. A Homeland Security Executive Cabinet (HSEC) makes recommendations to the governor, based on intelligence information, on whether to change the state's threat condition. To assist in critical infrastructure protection, a Department of Homeland Security Protective Security Advisor district is located in Anchorage. NORTHCOM's Joint Task Force Alaska is headquartered at Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage. Coast Guard District 17 is headquartered in Juneau.

  • Law Enforcement

    The Alaska Department of Public Safety (DPS) is the statewide law enforcement agency. The FBI Anchorage field office has jurisdiction over the entire state. Resident agencies are located in Fairbanks and Juneau. The entire FBI division comprises more than 70 special agents, task force officers and professional support employees.

  • Emergency Management

    The Alaska State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) is an all-hazards commission that provides coordination among state, federal and local representatives on all emergency management issues for the highly decentralized state structure. In January 2003, the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management was established within the Alaska Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. Alaska is a member of the Pacific Northwest Emergency Management Arrangement (PNEMA), along with three other U.S. states, British Columbia and Yukon.

Sourcing: Department of Homeland Security, Justice Department and state government documents.
OrganizationCityStarted since 9/11
Alaska ATAC (U.S. Attorney)Anchoragex
Alaska Department of Public SafetyAnchorage 
Alaska JTTF (FBI)Anchoragex
Alaska Statewide Law Enforcement Information Center (SLEIC)Anchorage 
Anchorage Division (FBI)Anchorage 
Anchorage Police DepartmentAnchoragex
Anchorage Resident Office (Drug Enforcement)Anchorage 
Anchorage Satellite Office (ATF)Anchorage 
Division of Alaska State Troopers / Alaska State PoliceAnchoragex
Protective Security Advisor Anchorage District (DHS)Anchoragex
RAC Anchorage (ICE)Anchorage 
USAO District of Alaska (U.S. Attorney)Anchorage 
USMS District of Alaska (Marshals)Anchorage 
USSS Anchorage Field Office (Secret Service)Anchorage 
AFOSI Det 632 (Air Force)Eielson AFB 
AFOSI Det 631 (Air Force)Elmendorf AFB 
Joint Task Force Alaska (JTF-Alaska) (ALCOM) (NORTHCOM)Elmendorf AFBx
Fairbanks Office (Drug Enforcement)Fairbanks 
Fairbanks Resident Agency (FBI)Fairbanks 
103rd Civil Support Team (Nat'l Guard)Ft. Richardsonx
Alaska Adjutant General (TAG)Ft. Richardson 
Alaska Air National GuardFt. Richardson 
Alaska Army National GuardFt. Richardson 
Alaska Citizen CorpsFt. Richardsonx
Alaska Department of Military and Veterans AffairsFt. Richardson 
Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency ManagementFt. Richardsonx
Alaska DOMS (Nat'l Guard)Ft. Richardson 
Alaska Fusion Center / Alaska Law Enforcement Information CenterFt. Richardsonx
Alaska National Guard JFHQ/JOCFt. Richardsonx
Alaska Office of Homeland SecurityFt. Richardsonx
Alaska Resident OfficeFt. Richardson 
Alaska Resident Office (Military Intel.)Ft. Richardson 
Alaska State Emergency Response Commission (SERC)Ft. Richardson 
Fort Richardson CID Office (U.S. Army)Ft. Richardson 
Fort Wainwright CID Office (U.S. Army)Ft. Wainwright 
Alaska Department of Public Safety Planning and Research SectionJuneau 
Juneau Resident Agency (FBI)Juneau 
Duty Station Kodiak (ICE)Kodiak 

The absence of knowledge of any specific threat to Alaska and its people does not mean the threat does not exist. The absence of attack on Alaska and its people to date does not mean one is not being planned.”

Source: Alaska Emergency Response Plan, 2004

Alaska has relatively large population centers and targets of national, social, and economic interest. Its geographic isolation from the 'lower 48 States' does not guarantee that these potential targets will have immunity from attack. It is also important to recognize that as the United States improves its homeland security, and targets become more difficult to attack, terrorists may seek targets that are less protected. Alaska can reduce the chances of becoming a target by devoting resources and efforts that improve its ability to identify, protect, and respond to those attacks. In addition, Alaska must address its remoteness from the continental United States and be prepared to conduct longer-term response activities before assistance arrives from the Federal Government and other States.”

Source: State of Alaska Multi-Year Training and Exercise Plan, 2009

State-Recognized Threats:
Public SafetyEarthquakes; Floods; Landslide and debris flow; Thunderstorms; Volcanoes; Winter storms; Extreme cold
Domestic SecurityHomegrown Islamic terrorists
Sourcing: Natural hazards are taken from DHS documents and State Emergency Operations Plans. Domestic terrorist threats are based upon U.S. government intelligence documents and actual attacks undertaken since 2001.

This project was last updated in September 2010. Data is accurate as of that date.
"Top Secret America" is a project nearly two years in the making that describes the huge national security buildup in the United States after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. | Read More »

More than a dozen Washington Post journalists spent two years developing Top Secret America. | See the details »


Top Secret America on Frontline

A short video from PBS’s FRONTLINE on The Post’s two-year investigation. An hour-long documentary film is forthcoming. Watch the trailer »

The reporters

Dana Priest

Investigative reporter Dana Priest has been The Washington Post's intelligence, Pentagon and health-care reporter. She has won numerous awards, including the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for public service for "The Other Walter Reed" and the 2006 Pulitzer for beat reporting for her work on CIA secret prisons and counterterrorism operations overseas. She is author of the 2003 book, "The Mission: Waging War and Keeping Peace With America's Military, (W.W. Norton).

William M. Arkin

William M. Arkin has been a columnist and reporter with The Washington Post and since 1998. He has worked on the subject of government secrecy and national security affairs for more than 30 years. He has authored or co-authored more than a dozen books about the U.S. military and national security.

Project Credits

Stephanie Clark, Ben de la Cruz, Kat Downs, Dan Drinkard, Anne Ferguson-Rohrer, Justin Ferrell, David Finkel, Jennifer Jenkins, Robert Kaiser, Laris Karklis, Jacqueline Kazil, Lauren Keane, Todd Lindeman, Greg Manifold, Jennifer Morehead, Bonnie Jo Mount, Larry Nista, Ryan O’Neil, Sarah Sampsel, Whitney Shefte, Laura Stanton, Julie Tate, Doris Truong, Nathaniel Vaughn Kelso, Michael Williamson, Karen Yourish, Amanda Zamora.

Contact Us

Phone: 202-334-9300

© The Washington Post Company