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FBI Responds to Evolving Threats, Says FBI Director Mueller

Doug Mills/The New York Times
Doug Mills/The New York Times

Director of Federal Bureau of Investigation Robert S. Mueller appeared yesterday before the Senate Judiciary Committee at the “Oversight of the Federal Bureau of Investigation” hearing to highlight some of the agency’s accomplishments in responding to threats to the United States within the past year.

In his testimony, Mueller cited numerous national cases in terrorism, threats to national intelligence, cyber threats, financial crimes, public corruption, gang violence and felony crimes in Indian country. He addressed the FBI’s efforts to reduce threats to national security in response to these incidents.

“These examples underscore the complexity and breadth of the FBI’s mission to protect the nation in a post-9/11 world,” Mueller said. “They also demonstrate how the FBI has evolved as a threat-based, intelligence-driven agency in responding to these threats, and how the FBI will meet these challenges in the years to come.”

Mueller cited the attempted Times Square bombing, the attempted bombing of Northwest Airlines Flight 253 on Dec. 25, 2009 and homegrown extremist acts as examples of how terrorist attacks are constantly changing.

“These terrorist threats are diverse, far-reaching, and ever-changing,” he explained. “Combating them requires the FBI to continue improving our intelligence and investigative programs, and to continue engaging our intelligence and law enforcement partners, both domestically and overseas.”

Mueller also touched on the Russian Spy case, explaining the FBI “tracked their movements, activities and intentions up until the time of their arrests.” This, along with other threats, pushed the FBI to develop National Strategy for Counterintelligence to deter and disrupt the modern counterintelligence threats.

He explained FBI is continuing its efforts to combat cyber and financial crimes through proven operations and investigations and is using these experiences to shape the agency’s direction.

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