Department of Homeland Security Daily Open Source Infrastructure Report

Friday, May 1, 2009

Complete DHS Daily Report for May 1, 2009

Daily Report

Top Stories

 According to the Associated Press, nine workers at a UPS facility in South Holland, Illinois received medical treatment Wednesday after a drum containing hazardous materials was punctured on a loading dock. (See item 20)

20. April 29, Associated Press – (Illinois) Hazmat spill at UPS facility in South Holland injures nine workers. Nine workers at a UPS facility in south suburban South Holland, Illinois received medical treatment Wednesday after a drum containing hazardous materials was punctured on a loading dock. The puncture caused “fumes,” prompting a hazmat situation. The nine workers complained of nausea and eye irritation after coming into contact with the fumes, and were treated and released from a local urgent care clinic, a UPS spokesman said. No other injuries were reported. The South Holland Fire Department responded and requested a MABAS hazmat team after discovering that about 5 gallons of a combustible and corrosive substance had leaked from the drum, according to a release from the department. The dock area was evacuated for about two hours, when about 24 people were on the premises. The facility is open 24 hours a day and can have up to 400 people working, but most were making deliveries or were elsewhere when the spill happened. Neither the UPS spokesman nor the fire department could confirm what chemical was in the drum, but both said everything was cleaned up and back to normal Wednesday afternoon. Source:,w-hazmat-ups-facility-southholland-042909.article

 The New York Times reports that Fort Worth, Texas became the nation’s first major city school district to close on Thursday as a precaution to stop the fast-spreading swine flu. (See item 27)

27. April 30, New York Times – (International) Flu prompts shutdowns in Mexico, Texas. Taking extreme precautions to stop the fast-spreading swine flu, Fort Worth became the nation’s first major city school district to close on Thursday, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that the number of confirmed cases had risen to 109 in 11 states, up from 91 cases in 10 states on Wednesday. Several more states are awaiting confirmation of likely cases, including Illinois, Colorado, Maine, Georgia, and New Jersey, while hundreds of other schools around the country from Alabama to Minnesota have shut down. The closing of public schools in Fort Worth, the nation’s 17th-largest city, is expected to keep 80,000 students out of their classrooms through May 11, adding to the 53,000 pupils already being kept out of school in Texas. On Wednesday, the nation’s first death from the swine flu — a 23-month-old toddler who had traveled with his family from Mexico to Houston — was disclosed. Six people in the United States have been reported hospitalized. Elsewhere, the swine flu virus was confirmed in the Netherlands and Switzerland on Thursday, with the World Health Organization now confirming cases in 11 countries. In Canada, the confirmation of eight additional cases on Thursday brought the total number of cases of swine flu there to 27. The World Health Organization said Thursday it did not plan to raise its pandemic alert level, one day after the Geneva-based organization raised the level to the second-highest, phase 5, signaling that two countries had sustained human-to-human transmission of the virus. Officials in the United States, who have said they expected the virus to spread to more states and probably result in more fatalities, applauded the organization’s global warning. Phase 5 of the alert level signifies that a pandemic is imminent and that countries should make preparations for the disease. Source:


Banking and Finance Sector

12. April 29, Bloomberg – (National) Fed is said to seek capital for at least six banks. At least six of the 19 largest U.S. banks require additional capital, according to preliminary results of government stress tests, people briefed on the matter said. While some of the lenders may need extra cash injections from the government, most of the capital is likely to come from converting preferred shares to common equity, the people said. The Federal Reserve is now hearing appeals from banks, including Citigroup Inc. and Bank of America Corp., that regulators have determined need more of a cushion against losses, they added. By pushing conversions, rather than federal assistance, the government would allow banks to shore themselves up without the political taint that has soured both Wall Street and Congress on the bailouts. The risk is that, along with diluting existing shareholders, the government action won’t seem strong enough. “The challenge that policy makers will confront is that more will be needed and it’s not clear they have the resources currently in place or the political capability to deliver more,” said the chief financial economist at Morgan Stanley, one of the 19 banks that are being tested, in New York. Final results of the tests are due to be released next week. The banking agencies overseeing the reviews and the Treasury are still debating how much of the information to disclose. The Federal Chairman, the Treasury Secretary and other regulators are scheduled to meet this week to discuss the tests. Source:

13. April 28, Reuters – (New York) SEC charges ex-American Home Mortgage executives. Three former senior executives of American Home Mortgage Investment Corp, one of the biggest U.S. mortgage companies, were charged with involvement in an accounting fraud, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission said on April 28. The regulator said in a statement that the former chairman and CEO and the former CFO fraudulently understated first-quarter 2007 loan loss reserves by tens of millions of dollars, converting the company’s loss into a fictional profit. The pair and the former controller faced civil charges of misleading American Home Mortgage’s auditor, among other violations, according to the complaint in Manhattan federal court. Lawyers for all three men could not immediately be reached for comment. The company, which was the No. 10 mortgage lender in the United States, filed for bankruptcy protection in 2007 amid the mortgage meltdown that contributed to the financial crisis. Source:

14. April 28, St. Louis Business Journal – (Missouri) Koster warns of bank scam in Fenton, Eureka. The Missouri Attorney General warned residents in Eureka, High Ridge and Fenton on April 28 of a scam designed to steal their financial information. Customers of Rockwood Bank receive text messages that appear to be from the bank, telling the customers their accounts have been “locked,” and that they need to call a toll free number to reactivate their accounts, the Attorney General said. The text messages are bogus, and when customers call the number they are asked to supply sensitive banking information, the Attorney General said. The state consumer hotline has received “a large number of calls” from consumers in those towns in recent days saying they received the text messages on their cell phones, the Attorney General said. Source:

Information Technology

36. April 28, CNET News – (International) Another Adobe Reader security hole emerges. Security experts are recommending that people disable JavaScript in Adobe Reader following reports of a vulnerability in the popular portable document format reader on April 28. The vulnerability appears to be due to an error in the “getAnnots()” JavaScript function and exploiting it could allow someone to remotely execute code on the machine, according to an advisory from the US-CERT. “US-CERT encourages users and administrators to disable JavaScript in Adobe Reader to help mitigate the risk,” the post said. “To disable JavaScript in Adobe Reader, open the General Preferences dialog box. From the Edit-Preferences-JavaScript menu, uncheck ‘Enable Acrobat JavaScript.’” All currently supported shipping versions of Adobe Reader (8.1.4, 9.1 and 7.1.1 and earlier) are vulnerable and Windows, Macintosh and Unix platforms are affected, Adobe said in an advisory. The company said it would release updates for all the platforms but did not yet have a time frame for that. “We are currently not aware of any reports of exploits in the wild for this issue,” the advisory said. Source:

Communications Sector

Nothing to report.