An evaluation of Department of Homeland Security demonstrates that in spite of its shortcomings, it is the best hope for protecting Americans from terrorists. Consequently, it is necessary to enhance its effectiveness and address the challenges that limit organizational efficiency.
The Patriot Act was passed in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center (The Department of Justice, 2015). The widespread support for this tool was demonstrated by the huge bipartisan support. The Senate passed it 98-1 while the House voted 357-66 to approve its passage (The Department of Justice, 2015). The Act gave the Department of Homeland Security new tools to detect and neutralize terrorism threats facing the country. The tool allowed the Department of Homeland security to enhance the effectiveness of its existing tools by giving it more surveillance powers and making it possible to access business records without tipping the suspects (The Department of Justice, 2015). In addition, it made it possible for different security agencies to coordinate effectively. The approach enabled them to connect the dots to result in improved security outcomes. It is noted that the Act updated the law for it to be consistent with new technologies and emerging threats. It is also evident that the Act increased the penalties for the individuals and organizations that engage in terrorist activities.
The Act also exudes varied controversies because many people believe that since it was passed forty-five days after the terrorist attack, it was not subjected to intense scrutiny (Diamond, 2015). The security agencies have also abused the Act to create a surveillance state. Interestingly, the increased surveillance led to the collection of colossal amounts of data that made it difficult for the security agencies to find valuable patterns. The revelations by a NSA analyst, Edward Snowden raised concerns about its