The US Consulate in Hong Kong has boosted security to guard against millennium dangers ranging from Y2K computer breakdowns to terrorist attacks. Americans have been warned to stock up on food, water, fuel and any medicines they need, and extra security has been put in place at the consulate as part of a global move to protect US missions. 'We are in a heightened state of alert for this period,' consulate spokeswoman Mia Qi said yesterday, declining to be specific about security arrangements. Hours earlier, officials in Washington, where security is being beefed up over the New Year, said there were concerns that Americans abroad could be targeted by terrorists during New Year celebrations. David Carpenter, assistant secretary of state for diplomatic security, said the State Department was preparing for 'violence by radical millennium cults and civil disorders resulting from Y2K disruptions to critical infrastructure'. 'Both our posts overseas and the department are prepared to respond to these potential security emergencies,' Mr Carpenter said. Consular advice to the 50,000 Americans in the SAR notes that Hong Kong is among the best places in the world for Y2K readiness despite its heavy reliance on computerised systems. But, like all Americans abroad, those in Hong Kong are advised to register with the consulate before New Year's Eve and ensure they are prepared to cope with any Y2K-caused disruption of services. Ms Qi said there would be a delay in visas from the Hong Kong consulate. Non-immigrant visas would not be available until January 5, and immigrant visas would not be issued until two weeks into the new year.