DHS $1.5 Billion Covert Surveillance RFP

Author: John Honovich, Published on Feb 22, 2011

In this note, we examine a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) RFP for covert audio/video surveillance equipment and services. The equipment is to be used by DHS and other Federal law enforcement agencies. This bid is interesting both for the potential size of the procurement and as a glimpse into the technology used by America's top anti-terrorism organization. Surprisingly, the technology, especially, the video surveillance is incredibly low tech and out of date. Additionally, the bid is open to procure as much as $1.5 billion for equipment and services over a 5 year term. However, no obligation exists to purchase even a fraction of the total amount. Finally, the specifics on the purposes or application of the surveillance gear are not being disclosed.

For background, read the 96 page core DHS RFP specification.

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