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Published:February 16th, 2010 13:51 EST
Infragard: The Government's Technology for a Safer Tomorrow

Infragard: The Government's Technology for a Safer Tomorrow

By Ron G Anselm

 

     The IT sector in business and now the United States Government will never be the same with the advances of new ideas and the implementation of high security information sharing systems. With the war on terror and the constant threats against our country, this new technology is really something that is a big asset for the protection of our country.

     One new piece of technology that has combined government resources with the everyday civilian is called Infragard. Infragard is not brand new to the business of intelligence. It was first introduced in 1996 in one of the FBI`s field offices located in Cleveland, Ohio. It has made advances and upgrades over the last decade and is primarily a big effort to enlist support in the Information Technology cyber arena by linking the private sector with the FBI. Infragard combines academic institutions, law enforcement agencies, general businesses and any other institution that shares information electronically for the prevention and intelligence to help stop and alleviate any hostile acts against our country.

     Infragard has expanded to many other FBI field offices over the last decade and branched out to new agencies. Within the Infragrad system there is what is called Infragard Chapters that are linked with geographical FBI field offices. Each Infragard Chapter is assigned an FBI Special Agent Coordinator that works closely with Supervisory Special Agent Program Managers at the FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C. (www.infragard.net)

     The NIPC or National Infrastructure Protection Center was the lead agency on the Infragard system in the early 2000`s decade. The main objective of the NIPC was to provide cyber infrastructure protection (www.infragard.net) After 9/11, NIPC expanded its objectives to add physical threats as-well as cyber threats to its watch.

     The NIPC was transferred to the Department of Homeland Security in March of 2003. This agency now has the responsibility of critical infrastructure protection responsibilities. The FBI and Department of Homeland Security work as a team for the further development of the Infragard system for the support of the FBI`s protective mission and for the protection of counterterrorism and cyber crimes.

     This system is like the defensive captain on a football team. He is the leader and all his teamates add support for his leadership. In this case, the Infragard system is the team leader and all his support, the academic instituations, law enforcement agencies, businesses and so on link together has one team.

Some of the benefits of the Infragard System are:

a). The increased amount of information sharing between the FBI and multiple agencies for the protection and prevention of terrorism and other crimes.

b). The increased security for threats against our infrastructure by providing information sharing between agencies and the FBI.

c). The benefit of value added warnings for threats, advisories, and alerts.

d). The links of all state and federal agencies with the Department of Homeland Security.

e). The benefit of providing a forum where all involved can communicate which helps for training and education on counterterrorism, counterintelligence, cyber crimes and other relevant information for the prevention of any hostile acts against our country.

     So, this system is almost like the Internet within the Internet but a more secure Internet. With this ongoing technology we can all sleep a little better at night knowing Uncle Sam is not only protecting this country from its home in Washington, D.C but also right from your home PC with the cyber information system linking all information together as one team.

InfraGard is an information sharing and analysis effort serving the interests and combining the knowledge base of a wide range of members.  http://www.infragard.net/

                                                                          Reference

           Infragard  (2010), A Collaboration for Infrastructure Protection, (www.infragard.net)