6. Civil Rights Program
The FBI investigates a variety of civil rights violations. Hate crimes are motivated by bias against persons or property based on race, religion or ethnic/national origin. Housing discrimination, church burnings and voting rights violations are classified as hate crimes.
Color of law abuses occur when a public official uses their authority to deprive someone of a right protected by US laws or the constitution. Color of law violations are obvious (e.g. the Rodney King arrest).
Human trafficking is a form of modern day slavery. The FBI prosecutes anyone responsible for capture, detainment or transportation of a person for labor, through the use of force, fraud or coercion.
7. Polygraph/Profiling Program
FBI Agents use polygraph tests to get to the truth. Polygraph sensors include: a cardio cuff to measure blood pressure, two chest tubes to measure breathing and two electrodes to monitor sweat activity. Examiners ask questions that are known truths and known lies to determine a physiology baseline. Next, questions related to the situation are asked. When a particular question or line of questioning causes an issue, the Examiner asks in different ways and in different orders to isolate the lie. The work is getting the innocent person to think, “I’m OK, I didn’t do it” and the guilty person to think, “I did it, I’m so done”. When a FBI Examiner conducts a polygraph, a supervisor reviews results before a finding is issued. Polygraph test results are: deceptive, non-deceptive or inconclusive.
Suspects cannot be compelled to take a polygraph (by the FBI or anyone else). FBI agents are polygraphed initially, at the five year mark (reinvestigation) and before leaving the country. Polygraph is not a perfect science. It is a tool to point in a direction. Polygraph alone cannot be used to convict someone.
8. FBI Hostage Rescue Team
HRT offers a tactical option for any extraordinary hostage crisis or other law enforcement situation that may occur within the U.S. For more information on the HRT, read Christopher Whitcomb’s Cold Zero. It is an intriguing look within the HRT and includes details of Waco and Ruby Ridge.
9. FBI Public Relations
The Public Relations team is responsible for releasing information to the media and ultimately the general public. There is a delicate balance between the public’s right-to-know how the federal government operates and need-to-know criteria restricting sensitive information from the public domain. Limiting factors include FBI investigations policy, Department of Justice media policy, and numerous FBI security and accuracy guidelines for releasing information. In some states, there is only one FBI media representative. Given policy and resource constraints, the PR mission can be challenging.
10. Computer Crime Program
The Computer Crime Team’s # 1 priority is to prevent, detect and prosecute computer intrusions. Typical intrusions include illicit bank transfers and theft of classified information. Insider threat is also a serious consideration. In fact, FBI Special Agent Robert Hanssen began spying for the KGB in 1979 and was not discovered until 2000.
Under the Innocent Images initiative, the FBI combats child sexual exploitation via Internet. Child pornography is prevalent today due to the ease of use of computers, the number of children online and the amount of images available. Prosecution is complicated by jurisdictional complexities, lack of coordinated law enforcement and coordinated efforts by offenders.
Internet fraud is a federal crime prosecuted by the FBI. Many common cyber crimes fall under this category (e.g. credit/debit card fraud, reshipping, and investment fraud).
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