01:05 PM
Connect Directly

FBI Expands Cybercrime Division

Federal Bureau of Investigation will hire computer scientists, build new tools and boost collaboration to help catch malicious hackers.

14 Amazing DARPA Technologies On Tap
14 Amazing DARPA Technologies On Tap
(click image for larger view and for slideshow)
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is adding resources, building new tools, increasing hiring and expanding collaboration with local groups as part of its Next Generation Cyber Initiative, an effort to overhaul the FBI's Cyber Division, the agency announced last week.

The FBI has long been a force in combating cybercrime. In the last year alone, the agency has busted dozens involved in the online trafficking of credit card and bank account data, arrested key members of the Anonymous and LulzSec hacktivist groups, broken up a sophisticated gang of online bank fraudsters, taken down a small-town mayor for hacking a website calling for his recall and worked closely with international officials to disrupt a botnet that had stolen $14 million.

However, the FBI still wants to get better, especially in its ability to attribute attacks to the hackers behind them. Attribution of cybercrime has long been the bane of law enforcement due to the nature of the Internet and the ability of hackers to spoof their IP addresses and rely heavily on proxies. As the adage says, on the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog.

[ Cybercrime is a growing problem. See Hack Exposes Most South Carolinians' Social Security Numbers. ]

Over the course of the last year, the law enforcement agency has launched an effort to "uncover and investigate Web-based intrusion attacks and develop a cadre of specially trained computer scientists able to extract hackers' digital signatures from mountains of malicious code," the FBI said in a press release. For example, the FBI has increasingly hired computer scientists to work alongside agents as part of cyber investigations.

The question the FBI is attempting to resolve is "who is conducting the attack or the exploitation and what is their motive," FBI assistant director of criminal, cyber, response and services Richard McFeely said in a statement. "In order to get to that, we've got to do all the necessary analysis to determine who is at the other end of the keyboard perpetrating these actions."

Such an effort requires not only new talent and better tools, but also ongoing collaboration with organizations that get hacked and other government agencies. To that end, the FBI said that its agents are working to build relationships with critical infrastructure companies in industries like finance and transportation. The FBI is also sharing a lot of information with the Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security and National Security Agency as part of the National Cyber Investigative Joint Task Force.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
User Rank: Apprentice
10/31/2012 | 5:03:41 PM
re: FBI Expands Cybercrime Division
I should like to see the increasing problem of harassment, threats, and other bullying on social networks addressed on a Federal level. Fraud via online sales, Craigslist, and the ubiquitous dating site scams is also badly in need of attention. These activities have become so rampant that they are considered a matter of day to day life to many if not most who use the Internet. Criminal behavior involving interstate communications has long fallen under Federal jurisdiction. I would like to see strong enforcement of laws already in place
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
E-Commerce Security: What Every Enterprise Needs to Know
The mainstream use of EMV smartcards in the US has experts predicting an increase in online fraud. Organizations will need to look at new tools and processes for building better breach detection and response capabilities.
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
Published: 2015-10-15
The Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) subsystem in the Linux kernel through 4.x mishandles requests for Graphics Execution Manager (GEM) objects, which allows context-dependent attackers to cause a denial of service (memory consumption) via an application that processes graphics data, as demonstrated b...

Published: 2015-10-15
netstat in IBM AIX 5.3, 6.1, and 7.1 and VIOS 2.2.x, when a fibre channel adapter is used, allows local users to gain privileges via unspecified vectors.

Published: 2015-10-15
Cross-site request forgery (CSRF) vulnerability in eXtplorer before 2.1.8 allows remote attackers to hijack the authentication of arbitrary users for requests that execute PHP code.

Published: 2015-10-15
Directory traversal vulnerability in QNAP QTS before 4.1.4 build 0910 and 4.2.x before 4.2.0 RC2 build 0910, when AFP is enabled, allows remote attackers to read or write to arbitrary files by leveraging access to an OS X (1) user or (2) guest account.

Published: 2015-10-15
Cisco Application Policy Infrastructure Controller (APIC) 1.1j allows local users to gain privileges via vectors involving addition of an SSH key, aka Bug ID CSCuw46076.

Dark Reading Radio