Every day, criminals are invading countless homes and offices across the nation—not by breaking down windows and doors, but by breaking into laptops, personal computers, and wireless devices via hacks and bits of malicious code, the FBI says.
The collective impact is staggering. Billions of dollars are lost every year repairing systems hit by such attacks. Some take down vital systems, disrupting and sometimes disabling the work of hospitals, banks, and 9-1-1 services around the country.
Who is behind such attacks? It runs the gamut — from computer geeks looking for bragging rights… to businesses trying to gain an upper hand in the marketplace by hacking competitor websites, from rings of criminals wanting to steal your personal information and sell it on black markets…to spies and terrorists looking to rob our nation of vital information or to launch cyber strikes.
Today, these computer intrusion cases — counterterrorism, counterintelligence and criminal — are the paramount priorities of the FBI’s cyber program because of their potential relationship to national security.
Combating the threat. In recent years, the FBI has built a whole new set of technological and investigative capabilities and partnerships — it is as comfortable chasing outlaws in cyberspace as down back alleys and across continents. That includes:
- A Cyber Division at FBI Headquarters to address cybercrime in a coordinated and cohesive manner;
- Specially trained cyber squads at FBI headquarters and in each of its 56 field offices, staffed with agents and analysts who protect against investigate computer intrusions, theft of intellectual property and personal information, child pornography and exploitation, and online fraud;
- New Cyber Action Teams that travel around the world on a moment’s notice to assist in computer intrusion cases and that gather vital intelligence that helps identify the cybercrimes that are most dangerous to national security and to the nation’s economy;
- 93 Computer Crimes Task Forces nationwide that combine state-of-the-art technology and the resources of our federal, state, and local counterparts;
- A growing partnership with other federal agencies, including the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security and others — which share similar concerns and resolve in combating cybercrime.
Help the FBI catch suspects wanted in computer intrusion cases: Visit the Featured Fugitives—Cyber Crimes webpage to use the power of the web against the very criminals who seek to exploit it.