Panel Video: A New Database of Vetting Failures

Panelists discuss how national security threats have slipped between the cracks


Database: National Security Vetting Failures

Learning from Our Mistakes: About the National Security Vetting Failures Database

Panel Press Release

Panel Transcript

Event Summary

The Center for Immigration Studies unveiled a new database of national security vetting failures at a recent panel discussion. This database is the first known collection of preventable federal government vetting failures that enabled the entry of foreign nationals who threatened and harmed American national interests and public safety. The information collected in the database offers an opportunity to study and understand the failures, with an eye toward preventing such failures in the future.

The number of visa security failures already in the database illustrates the link between national security and immigration policy. To discuss this, the March 8 panel was comprised of individuals with experience in three institutions involved in vetting those coming to this country: intelligence, DHS, and the State Department.


Todd Bensman, the Center's Texas-based Senior National Security Fellow and author of “Overrun: How Joe Biden Unleashed the Greatest Border Crisis in U.S. History” and “America’s Covert Border War: The Untold Story of the Nation’s Battle to Prevent Jihadist Infiltration”. Prior to joining CIS, Bensman led homeland security intelligence efforts for nine years in the public sector. Bensman’s body of work with policy and intelligence operations is founded on more than 20 years of experience as an award-winning journalist covering national security topics, with particular focus on the Texas border.

Phillip Linderman, retired State Department senior Foreign Service officer with experience in working with foreign governments, as well as U.S. law enforcement and intelligence partners, on matters such as visa and passport fraud, human trafficking, terrorist travel, watchlisting, and identity information collection and use

Robert Law, Director of the Center for Homeland Security and Immigration at the America First Policy Institute and a former senior official at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)

Mark Krikorian (Moderator), is the Center’s Executive Director.

Date and Location:

March 8, 2023

Washington, DC

Panel Video



Todd Bensman


Phillip Linderman


Robert Law


Question and Answer Session