Posted by A. T. Smith, Assistant Director for Investigations, United States Secret Service
Today, I joined Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano and National Protection and Programs Directorate Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Cybersecurity Greg Schaffer at NASDAQ MarketSite in New York to meet with cybersecurity partners from law enforcement and the private sector to discuss efforts to combat cyber crime. As we’ve discussed throughout National Cyber Security Awareness Month, Internet safety is a shared responsibility and each of us has a role to play.
While our mission to protect the President of the United States and other officials is well-known, the Secret Service also has an important investigative mission to help secure our nation’s financial infrastructure. We are responsible for combating counterfeit currency as well as protecting America’s financial systems, together with our partners from federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies, the private sector and academia.
Today’s modern world is more interconnected than ever before. Yet, for all its advantages, increased connectivity brings increased risk of theft, fraud, and abuse. The Secret Service employs a number of tools to complete its mission including:
- Electronic Crimes Task Forces (ECTFs), including two international task forces, which focuses on identifying and locating international cyber criminals connected to cyber intrusions, bank fraud, data breaches, and other computer-related crimes.
- The Cyber Intelligence Section (CIS), which has directly contributed to the arrest of transnational cyber criminals, responsible for the theft of hundreds of millions of credit card numbers and the loss of approximately $600 million to financial and retail institutions.
- The National Computer Forensic Institute (NCFI) in Hoover, Alabama that provides law enforcement officers, prosecutors, and judges with cyber training and information to combat cyber crime. To date, more than 600 state and local law enforcement officials, 200 prosecutors, and dozens of judges representing more than 300 agencies throughout the country have been trained by the Secret Service at the NCFI.
The Secret Service is also working with our partners across DHS to leverage capabilities at the Department and across the cyber response community. DHS hosts classified cyber intelligence briefings to cleared members of the Financial Services Sector on strategies, trends and tactics of cyber criminals, as well as providing mitigation and implementation recommendations to ensure a proper network defense from evolving cyber threats. In addition, the Secret Service works with the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC) by way of the Department’s 24-hour watching and warning National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center.
Emerging cyber threats require the engagement of the entire society. While no one is immune from cyber attacks, businesses of all sizes can and should take steps to protect themselves. To find more information on some of the simple steps businesses can take to guard themselves against cybercrimes and attacks, visit the Stop.Think.Connect. Campaign website.
Learn more about our efforts at http://www.secretservice.gov/