For Terror Alerts, Check Facebook
New system will reportedly be in place by April 27
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Apr 8, 2011 10:13 AM CDT
Graphic shows the existing and new terror alert systems by the Department of Homeland Security.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Details of the new terror alert system are out, and it looks like Twitter and Facebook are in. As previously reported, the government is replacing its color coding system: In its place will be a two-level system—"elevated" and "imminent"—and alerts might be sent to Americans via Facebook and Twitter. Should a warning be issued, it will be accompanied by an expiration date, though they won't necessarily all reach the public's eyes and ears. The new system is due by April 27.

A confidential government document dated April 1 reveals the government’s planned process, reports the AP: First, members of Congress will be notified, then state and city counterterror officials will be warned; after that comes governors and mayors, and then the public—if the Homeland Security secretary deems it necessary. “Elevated” threats would last a maximum of 30 days, but could be extended; these warnings would address general terror “trends,” notes the AP. An “imminent” warning would refer to a specific threat and last a week at most, but could also be extended.