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South Carolina

South Carolina ranks 24th of 50 states in the number of domestically focused counterterrorism and homeland security organizations, and 26th overall in organizations established or newly involved in counterterrorism since 9/11 (tied with Kentucky). In dollar amount, the state ranked 35th in fiscal 2009 in federal homeland security spending and 30th in domestic preparedness and antiterrorism programs. Measured per capita, the state ranked 25th in overall federal government expenditures.

U.S. intelligence and homeland security agencies and the Department of Justice measure the potential terrorist threat to South Carolina by analyzing data, including the following: * South Carolina is one of 13 states or territories where U.S. attorneys secured one terrorism conviction from Sept. 11, 2001, through March 2010, according to the Justice Department. * The state is one of 18 that have no metropolitan area that has been designated by the federal government as "high-threat, high-density" with regard to acts of terrorism. * South Carolina has the sixth-largest and fastest-growing immigrant population in the nation, a measure that the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI associate with potential threats. South Carolina is one of 22 states with more than one Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF).

State security snapshot

Organizations working on homeland security and counterterrorism: 56

Organizations that started this work after 9/11: 14

75% Pre-9/11

25% Post-9/11

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South Carolina is divided into four Counter Terrorism Coordinating Council Regions: Piedmont, Midland, Pee Dee and Low County; and six Emergency Management Regions. The state is located in FEMA Region IV; the Defense Coordinating Office responsible for brokering and arranging federal military support for the state is in Atlanta.

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 4014256


  • Counterterrorism

    South Carolina has Joint Terrorism Task Forces at its two FBI field offices in Columbia and Charleston. The U.S. attorney also chairs an Anti-Terrorism Advisory Council (ATAC) in Columbia.

  • Intelligence

    South Carolina is a member of the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) and the Regional Organized Crime Information Center (ROCIC). It is also a member of Southern Shield, a consortium of homeland security and law enforcement officials from 14 Southeastern states and territories. At the federal level, the FBI operates a Field Intelligence Group (FIG) in Columbia. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement Field Intelligence Group in Atlanta has jurisdiction over South Carolina.

  • Fusion

    The South Carolina Intelligence and Information Center (SCIIC), established in 2005, is a component of the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) and is the state-designated all-crimes fusion center. The South Carolina Information Exchange Data Warehouse (SCIex) is a fusion center project to build an incident warehouse. Almost 400 local and state law enforcement agencies can contribute to and access data from their agencies' record-management systems in the SCIEx database. The SCIex Threat Analysis Cell (TAC) supports the state critical-infrastructure program by analyzing trends, vulnerabilities and threats.

  • Homeland Security

    The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) is the lead agency in the counterterrorism effort, including preparation against acts of terrorism in or affecting South Carolina and the crisis-management response to such acts. To assist in critical-infrastructure protection, a DHS Protective Security Advisor is located in Columbia. The SLED also participates in Project SeaHawk, a seaport counterterrorism and protection initiative began by the United States Attorney's Office in 2003. The South Carolina National Guard's 263rd Army Air & Missile Defense Artillery Brigade provides last-resort air defense protection for the National Capitol Region centered on Washington, D.C.

  • Law Enforcement

    The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) is the statewide law enforcement agency. The FBI's Columbia field office operates resident agencies and satellite offices in Aiken, Charleston, Florence, Greenville, Hilton Head, Myrtle Beach, Rock Hill and Spartanburg.

  • Emergency Management

    The South Carolina Emergency Management Division in West Columbia is the state agency for coordinating disaster/emergency preparedness.

Sourcing: Department of Homeland Security, Justice Department and state government documents.
OrganizationCityStarted since 9/11
Aiken Resident Agency (FBI)Aiken 
Hilton Head Resident Agency (FBI)Blufton 
AFOSI Charleston JTTF (Det 310) (Air Force)Charlestonx
Charleston JTTF (Coast Guard, FBI)Charlestonx
Charleston JTTF (FBI)Charlestonx
Charleston Resident Agency (FBI)Charleston 
Charleston Satellite Office (ATF)Charleston 
Charleston Satellite Office (Diplomatic Sec.)Charleston 
Federal Law Enforcement Training Center Charleston Facility (DHS)Charleston 
RAC Charleston (ICE)Charleston 
AFOSI Det 310 (Air Force)Charleston AFB 
Charleston Resident Office (Defense Sec.)Charleston AFB 
Charleston County Sheriff's OfficeCharleston Heightsx
43rd Civil Support Team (Nat'l Guard)Columbiax
Columbia District Office (Drug Enforcement)Columbia 
Columbia Division (FBI)Columbia 
Columbia JTTF / S.C. JTTF (FBI)Columbiax
Columbia Satellite Office (ATF)Columbia 
Midlands Regional Counter Terrorism CouncilColumbiax
Protective Security Advisor Columbia District (DHS)Columbiax
RAC Columbia (ICE)Columbia 
S.C. Counterterrorism Coordinating CouncilColumbiax
S.C. Electronic Crimes Task Force (Secret Service)Columbia 
S.C. Information and Intelligence Center / S.C. Fusion CenterColumbiax
South Carolina Adjutant General (TAG)Columbia 
South Carolina Air National GuardColumbia 
South Carolina Army National GuardColumbia 
South Carolina ATAC (U.S. Attorney)Columbiax
South Carolina Highway PatrolColumbia 
South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED)Columbia 
USAO District of South Carolina (U.S. Attorney)Columbia 
USMS District of South Carolina (Marshals)Columbia 
USSS Columbia (Secret Service)Columbia 
Pee Dee Counter Terrorism CouncilConwayx
Florence Resident Agency (FBI)Florence 
Florence Satellite Office (ATF)Florence 
37th Military Police Detachment (CID) (U.S. Army)Ft. Jackson 
NCIS Resident Agency Charleston (Navy)Goose Creek 
Greenville County Sheriffs OfficeGreenville 
Greenville Resident Agency (FBI)Greenville 
Greenville Satellite Office/ Industry Operations (ATF)Greenville 
Piedmont Regional Counter Terrorism CouncilGreenvillex
RAC Greenville (ICE)Greenville 
South Carolina IRS Criminal InvestigationGreenville 
USSS Greenville (Secret Service)Greenville 
Myrtle Beach Resident Agency (FBI)Myrtle Beach 
Charleston Post of Duty (Defense)North Charleston 
Charleston Resident Office (Drug Enforcement)North Charleston 
USSS North Charleston (Secret Service)North Charleston 
NCIS Resident Agency Parris Island (Navy)Parris Island 
Rock Hill Resident Agency (FBI)Rock Hill 
AFOSI Det 212 (Air Force)Shaw AFB 
AFOSI Region 2 OL-A (Air Force)Shaw AFB 
Spartanburg Resident Agency (FBI)Spartanburg 
S.C. Emergency Management DivisionWest Columbia 
South Carolina State Citizen CorpsWest Columbiax

"While there have not been any successful acts of terrorism committed in South Carolina, the state has many critical and high-profile facilities, high concentrations of population and other potentially-attractive venues for terrorist activity that are inherently vulnerable to a variety of terrorist methods. Recent national and international terrorist activity and its continued threat continue to reinforce potential dangers. ... Civil disturbances may occur at anytime in South Carolina. However, civil disorder is often preceded by periods of increased tension caused by questionable social and/or political events such as controversial jury trials or law enforcement actions."”

Source: South Carolina Emergency Operations Plan, 2010

State-Recognized Threats:
Public SafetyExtreme heat; Hurricanes; Thunderstorms; Tornadoes
Domestic SecurityJamaat ul-Fuqra
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.
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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.

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