FBI to Industry: Share Your Pain

Article excerpt

Is computer crime rising dramatically? All accounts suggest that it is, says David E. Green, principal deputy chief of the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS) of the U.S. Department of Justice. As the number of people using networks keeps increasing, the FBI and other law enforcement agencies are opening many more criminal investigations, and surveys indicate that corporations are finding themselves under cyber-attack more frequently. But accurate figures are hard to come by, given the reluctance of companies to report incidents. Such under-reporting makes it hard for law enforcement to spot trends and to make the case to Congress for more resources.

Despite great strides by law enforcement in hiring technologically proficient agents and prosecutors, under-reporting has led to a Catch-22, Green told Security Management in an interview. "People don't call the FBI, because they think there aren't enough tech-savvy agents to solve their crime, so reports of cybercrime stay low," be says. And that hinders the agency's efforts to secure funding to train more tech-savvy agents.

What should companies do? "The best thing to do is contact the local FBI office," says Green. They'll either have Infrastructure Protection and Computer Intrusion Squads, who are experts in computer crimes, or they'll have someone expert enough to do something or contact the right people.

Green notes that businesses have some common misconceptions about what happens when victims call law enforcement. …