October 23, 2010 by USA Post
Infragard, One member gave us information about a victim of a financial institution online banking fraud in which large sums of money moving in and out of the accounts of the company. Another let us know about an intrusion into a computer system that led to the disfigurement of a series of state agency web sites. A third persuaded a U.S. business contact us when he was beaten with a “SQL injection” attack that inserts code into your website, which allows criminals to access a company database with customer orders and credit card numbers.
In each of these cases and many more like them, a member of an initiative sponsored by the FBI called InfraGard made a difference in the exchange of valuable information that benefited our research, the organizations involved and the wider community.
That is precisely the point of the program, which brings together representatives of public and private sectors to help protect our nation’s critical infrastructure and key resources from attack by terrorists, criminals and others who wish us harm.
It is a partnership that makes sense, since most components of U.S. infrastructure, such as utilities, transportation systems, telecommunications networks, water and food providers, public health and financial services-are privately owned and operated.
The first focuses on cyber crime. InfraGard started in our office in Cleveland in 1996 as a way to share information with local information technology (IT) experts and scholars in support of our cyber investigations. We pass along what we knew about cyber intrusions and crime trends to our partners to help them secure their facilities and computer networks. And our partners share with us their experience in IT and information on cyber crime was possible.
The program was so successful that replicates in each of our 56 field offices … and expanded its initial focus on cyber crime to include t*rror*sm, intelligence, criminal and security issues.
broader approach today. Now, 85 InfraGard chapters with a total of more than 35,000 members working with us through our regional offices to protect against attacks on critical infrastructure that may come in the form of computer intrusions, violations of physical security, or other methods. These members represent state, local and tribal law enforcement, academia, other government agencies, communities, and private industry.
A chapter level, members meet to discuss the threats and other issues affecting their businesses. The meetings led by a local governing board and an FBI agent who serves as coordinator of InfraGard, give everyone the opportunity to share experiences and best practices.
InfraGard members have access to a secure communications network with an FBI encrypted website, webmail, mailing lists and message boards. The website has an integral role in our efforts to exchange information: use it to disseminate threat alerts and warnings. Also used to send intelligence products of the Office and other agencies last year, “we have published more than 1,000 of them, and recently gave members of InfraGard’s ability to provide feedback.
Dr. Kathleen Kiernan, president of the national board of directors of InfraGard, he said, “The intelligence and information flows seamlessly between all involved, a great testament to generous public service.”
And in terms of our research efforts in recent years have opened hundreds of cases as a result of information provided by members of InfraGard, and have received assistance in more than 1,000 people.
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