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According to recent reports, the FBI has neutralized a malicious cyber attack apparently involving its New York office.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation says it is continuing to investigate the source of the intrusion of its computer networks over the past few days. “The FBI is aware of the incident and is working to gain additional information,” the bureau said. “This is an isolated incident that has been contained.”
FBI officials told CNN sources they believed the malicious activity involved a computer system used in investigations of child pornography. That computer system is believed to be located at the bureau’s New York field office, one of the largest and most high-profile in the FBI.
“Crimes against children investigations frequently involve the forensic collection, processing, and analysis of digital evidence,” said Austin Berglas, a former FBI special agent in New York. “Once evidence is obtained or seized through consent or legal process, the digital media (cellphones, computers, and external storage devices) are provided to a member of the FBI’s Computer Analysis Response Team (CART),” Berglas said.
After any digital evidence is collected by an FBI certified special agent or forensic examiner, it is then scanned into the CART network to catch any “malware or malicious files prior to processing on computers with specialized forensic software used to extract information contained on the devices”, he added.
Although the potential always exists for malware to infect and spread through the CART network, Berglas said forensic examiners will create and only use a working copy of the original evidence for analysis and review, providing another layer of security.
The FBI has declined to make any further statements about the incident.
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