Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad appeared on a broad, first-line Homeland Security watch list between 1999 and 2008, according to CBS News sources. Shahzad was flagged on the Traveler Enforcement Compliance System — TECS — because he brought $80,000 in cash into the United States:
TECS is a major law enforcement computer system that allows its approximately 120,000 users from 20 federal agencies to share information. The database is designed to identify individuals suspected of or involved in violation of federal law.
The system has been recently called inefficient by members of Congress. In late March, Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut and Susan Collins of Maine criticized the system in a letter to DHS, writing that, “Current functionality does not allow interoperability among databases, fast searching of information, modern interfaces for users of the system, or sufficient security to protect critical terrorist travel data.”
A modernization of the system began in 2008 and is expected to be completed by 2015.
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