With U.S intelligence increasingly confident that Tuesday's Istanbul airport attack was the work of ISIS, officials are stepping up security at American airports — some concerned about possible plots coinciding with the Fourth of July holiday and the Muslim Ramadan holiday, others seeking to reassure travelers with a visible show of force, NBC News reports.
ISIS has specifically called for more attacks on the West during Ramadan, which ends July 5. Officials are concerned that after battlefield setbacks in Syria and Iraq, the terror group is more determined than ever to attack inside the U.S.
The Transportation Security Administration has increased security at major U.S. airports. That includes the deployment of Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response teams — heavily armed officers, clad in body armor, who sometimes conduct random security sweeps and searches, law enforcement sources told NBC News.
But airport drop-off and pick-up areas are among the many soft targets in the U.S. that are nearly impossible to protect from a concerted armed attack, officials said.