Press Release

For Immediate Release
October 1, 2002

Washington D.C.
FBI National Press Office
(202) 324-3691

RESPONSE TO THE DOJ-OIG REPORT TITLED:
"A REVIEW OF THE FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION'S
COUNTERTERRORISM PROGRAM: THREAT ASSESSMENT,
STRATEGIC PLANNING, AND RESOURCES MANAGEMENT"

Director Mueller, III, and FBI senior managers have reviewed the DOJ-OIG audit report which examined certain aspects of the FBI's management of its counterterrorism resources, primarily the areas of risk assessment and resource management. Director Mueller welcomes the report's findings and concurs with the recommendations as constructive guidance. While the audit did not assess all aspects of the Counterterrorism program, many of the recommendations are part of the larger, ongoing reengineering of the program. The goal is improved analysis and operational capabilities combined with increased cooperation and integration to strengthen the FBI's ability to investigate and prevent acts of terrorism. Along with, and as a part of this ongoing effort, the FBI will specifically initiate the following programs and actions in response to the threat assessment, strategic planning, and resource management recommendations specified in the report.

THREAT ASSESSMENT

  • The Counterrorism Division (CTD) has prepared a draft of a comprehensive national-level assessment of the terrorist threat to the United States. This draft is currently under review by CTD Senior Management.
  • Included in this assessment will be an evaluation of the of the chemical and biological weapons most likely to be used by terrorists. Also included in the assessment will be a comprehensive analysis of the potential of the use, by terrorists, of other weapons of mass destruction.
  • The CTD will share this assessment with appropriate law enforcement and intelligence agencies.
  • The CTD is currently developing criteria for the the initial evaluation and prioritization of incoming threat information. The resulting system will substantially improve the CTD's ability to process, assimilate, and prioritize threat information. The system will also ensure that new threat information is properly routed to all analysts, FBIHQ investigative units, FBI Executive Management, FBI Field Offices, and the appropriate law enforcement/intelligence agencies tracking a particular threat.
  • Currently, the CTD's Threat Monitoring Unit, in concert with the Intelligence Community, tracks all incoming threat information 24 hours per day.

STRATEGIC PLANNING

  • The FBI is currently updating its 1998 Strategic Plan to conform to the existing Department of Justice (DOJ) Strategic Plan.
  • As part of the FBI's 2003 strategic planning process, all programs will be required to develop performance measures for assessing national program performance and for evaluating individual field office performance. The FBI is developing these performance measures in cooperation with DOJ and the Office of Management and Budget.
  • The FBI's inspection process is currently being revised to focus on outcome/results based performance measures and to track with a reengineered, prevention-driven Counterterrorism program.
  • The FBI will initiate a system of major case review for the purpose of gaining administrative, organizational, and substantive information from the handling of past investigations.
  • A working group will be established to implement this system that will identify, review and analyze "lessons learned" from past major investigations.
  • This working group will include appropriate representatives from the FBI operational divisions, the Records Management Division, and will be chaired by the Deputy Assistant Director from the Criminal Investigative Division. The working group will report directly to the Deputy Director.

RESOURCE MANAGEMENT

  • The CTD will design a core training curriculum and minimum competencies for FBI Special Agents assigned to counterterrorism investigations.
  • Training related proficiency standards will become part of the FBI Strategic Plan and the FBIHQ Counterterrorism Program Management Plan.
  • The CTD will establish proficiency criteria for counterterrorism squads in FBI field offices and for CTD units at FBIHQ.

Initiation of these programs and actions will further enhance the FBI's revised mission that places investigative priority on the thorough and aggressive investigation of international and domestic terrorism matters. Some important aspects of the FBI's investigative mission against terrorism include:

  • Establishment of the National Intel Share Project which serves to address the complex legal, legislative, and technological issues related to sharing intelligence and information with other appropriate law enforcement and Intelligence Community agencies.
  • Creation of a national, multi-agency joint terrorism task force to insure that every appropriate law enforcement and Intelligence Community agency receives "real time" terrorism related information.
  • Establishment of the Office of Intelligence staffed by FBI and CIA analysts and headed by a senior CIA analyst. This office has improved the FBI's ability to analyze and share critical terrorism information throughout the FBI and with appropriate law enforcement and Intelligence Community agencies.
  • An increase in the number of CIA officials detailed to the FBI, along with an equal increase of FBI officials to the CIA, which insures consistent and uniform information sharing between the agencies.
  • The shift of 480 FBI Special Agents to counterterrorism investigations and another 38 Special Agents to the Training and Security Divisions.
  • The hiring of a former IBM executive to oversee the restructuring of the FBI's technological systems used to support investigations and to protect information.


A Review of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Counterterrorism Program: Threat Assessment, Strategic Planning, and Resource Management, Executive Summary

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