The Department of Homeland Security announced Tuesday it would increase security around federal buildings in Washington and around the country, calling it a precautionary step against possible terrorist attacks.
"The reasons for this action are self-evident: the continued public calls by terrorist organizations for attacks on the homeland and elsewhere, including against law enforcement another government officials, and the acts of violence targeted at government personnel and installations in Canada and elsewhere recently," DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson said in a statement to the press.
The Lincoln Memorial, left, Washington Monument, and U.S. Capitol are seen here on Sunday, Oct. 26. The Obama administration said Tuesday it would boost security around federal buildings in Washington and around the country in response to threats of terror attacks. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
"Given world events, prudence dictates a heightened vigilance in the protection of U.S. government installations and our personnel," he said.
Johnson said the exact steps it would take are "law-enforcement sensitive," and may differ depending on the location. But he indicated increased personnel will likely be a factor, as he said he asked the Federal Protective Service to "enhance its presence and security" at government buildings.
The statement didn't name any particular terrorist organization, but the Islamic State has called on people to engage in terrorist acts against the U.S. and other countries opposed to it in the Middle East.
DHS also advised state and local governments to be "equally vigilant" against "potential small-scale attacks by a lone offender or a small group of individuals."
The attack in Canada by a single Islamic convert has prompted some Republicans to openly discuss the idea of monitoring Muslim mosques, to keep law enforcement agencies better informed about the possible radicalization of Muslims in the United States.