A REPORT put out by the US Department of Justice highlights inadequacies in the FBI's ability to combat national cyber security threats, saying many special agents lack the basic expertise to do their jobs properly.
The DoJ said that of the 36 agents it interviewed that were handling national security related cyber investigations, only 64 per cent reported that they had the expertise to handle these types of cases.
The report said that the remaining 36 per cent of the field agents "lacked the networking and counterintelligence expertise to investigate these types of cases" and that five of them "did not think they were able or qualified to investigate national security intrusions effectively".
The DoJ said that forensic and analytical skills in the field offices it investigated were not good enough to support a national security intrusion investigation, which field agents said hindered their efforts to find those responsible.
It said, "One agent who had recently been assigned his first counterterrorism intrusion case said that he did not know how to investigate a national security intrusion case."
"He was concerned about is ability to perform the investigation, especially because he viewed it as a significant case."
There is a way for FBI agents to become experts in cyber investigations, which requires on-the-job training for five to seven years.
But problems have cropped up, such as the different technical expertise needed for national security cyber investigations, as opposed to that needed for other types of cyber crime. µ
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