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U.S. security stepped up after terror bomb attempts

New York City commuters to face random bag checks

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An NYPD officer looks through a subway car a day before random bag checks are to begin.

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WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Security is stepped up at a September 11 terror target as well as New York City's massive transit system after four terror bomb attacks were attempted in London Thursday.

An internal alert sent to Pentagon employees said the police presence would be increased around the building and its extensive grounds as a precaution, officials said.

In addition to the deployed uniformed police, numerous elements of the heavier armed anti-terrorism Pentagon police force are monitoring the grounds.

There is an obvious increase in marked and unmarked police cars around the Pentagon, and police are also monitoring the subway stop, which is adjacent to the Pentagon building, and a bus stop just a few feet away.

On September 11, 2001, American Airlines Flight 77 -- hijacked by five terrorists -- slammed into the Pentagon, killing 224 airline passengers, crew members and Pentagon workers, both civilian and military.

'Another wake-up call'

Two other hijacked airplanes hit the World Trade Center, killing 2,749 people and destroying the twin towers that day.

The NYPD and Metropolitan Transit Authority police will begin Friday conducting random searches of bags and backpacks belonging to people who travel on the city's transportation system. (Full story)

"The searches will be in place indefinitely or until such a time that authorities consider the measure unnecessary," MTA spokesman Tom Kelly told CNN.

New York City has been on high alert (orange) since the 2001 terror attacks.

"It's another wake-up call that mass transit is the target of choice for terrorists," said Sen. Charles Schumer, D-New York. "Mass transit systems -- whether in London or here in the United States -- are wide open."

Schumer said he was disappointed that the Homeland Security bill passed in the Senate last week "barely increased the amount of funding" for protecting mass transit systems.

"I just think we have to do a whole lot more on rail security, that the federal government has to do a whole lot more," he told reporters.

CNN's Mike Mount and Rob Frehse contributed to this report.

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