Home About Us Critical Incident Response Group Investigations and Operations Support

Investigations & Operations Support

Investigations & Operations Support

The Investigations and Operations Support Section (IOSS) supports other CIRG sections, FBI field offices, FBI Headquarters divisions, U.S. law enforcement agencies, and FBI legal attaches at U.S. embassies abroad in the preparation for, response to, and successful resolution of major investigations, critical incidents, and special events. IOSS personnel provide expertise in behavioral assessment, crisis management, special events management, rapid deployment, and logistics and information technology…and provide input on the development of national plans, policies, and exercises; training for FBI, law enforcement, military, and intelligence personnel; and research and development. The section includes the National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime and the Crisis Management Unit.

National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime

The primary mission of the National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime (NCAVC) is to provide behavioral-based investigative support to the FBI, national security agencies, and other federal, state, local and international law enforcement involved in the investigation of unusual or repetitive violent crimes, threats, terrorism, cyber, white collar crime, public corruption, and other matters.

The NCAVC consists of five units:

  • Behavioral Analysis Unit 1 (counterterrorism, arson and bombing matters);
  • Behavioral Analysis Unit 2 (threats, cyber, white collar crime, and public corruption);
  • Behavioral Analysis Unit 3 (crimes against children);
  • Behavioral Analysis Unit 4 (crimes against adults);
  • Behavioral Research and Instruction Unit.

The Violent Criminal Apprehension Program (ViCAP) consists of a database and web-based tool available to law enforcement agencies to link homicides, sexual assaults, missing person, and unidentified human remains that may be geographically dispersed, allowing police departments to better coordinate communication and investigative efforts on potentially linked crimes. The FBI maintains the database and our analysts assist investigators with case linkages and other analysis. Over 5,000 law enforcement agencies have participated in ViCAP—created in 1985—and have contributed more than 85,000 cases to the system.

NCAVC staff provide operational support for a range of cases, including but not limited to domestic and international terrorism; threats of targeted violence (e.g., active shooters in schools, workplaces, and public areas or buildings); cyber crime; white collar crime and public corruption; cases involving child victims-abduction or mysterious disappearances of children, homicides of children, and victimization of children; cases involving adult victims—serial, spree, mass, and other murders; serial rape; extortion; kidnapping; product tampering; arson and bombing; and weapons of mass destruction.

NCAVC personnel deploy to provide time-sensitive, on-site support to the investigators and managers of complex investigations. They also provide case consultations for new, active, and cold cases via telephone conference calls, video teleconferences, and meetings at CIRG headquarters in Quantico, Virginia. The behavioral analysis units provide direct support to FBI crisis negotiators in cases involving abductions, hostage taking, extortions, threats, and other matters. NCAVC is comprised of Bureau agents and professional staff members, along with agents from other federal agencies, including the U.S. Capitol Police, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. In addition, all 56 FBI field offices have NCAVC coordinators who handle support and training requests from agencies in their local area.

NCAVC provides the following services:

  • Crime analysis;
  • Profiles of unknown offenders;
  • Offender motivation;
  • Linkage analysis;
  • Investigative suggestions;
  • Multi-agency coordination;
  • Threat assessment and management;
  • Interview strategies;
  • Search warrant affidavit assistance;
  • Prosecution and trial strategies;
  • Expert testimony;
  • Critical incident analysis.


The NCAVC also conducts extensive research from a law enforcement perspective, often in conjunction with other law enforcement, government, and academic organizations. Results of research are provided in publications, training classes, seminars, and conferences.

Crisis Management Unit

The Crisis Management Unit (CMU) provides support in preparing for and successfully responding to critical incidents and special events through:

  • Domestic and foreign operational deployments to support command post operations;
  • Deliberate planning, resource augmentation, and operational deployment in support of domestic and international special events;
  • Development of crisis management and special events policies, doctrine, and plans for the federal government and the FBI;
  • Maintaining a leadership role within interagency and private sector working groups addressing incident response, domestic preparedness and international threats;
  • Crisis management training for a wide audience;
  • Training and deployment support for FBI senior executives designated by the U.S. Attorney General as Senior Federal Law Enforcement Officials in a catastrophic domestic incident;
  • Participation, development, delivery, and evaluation of national and FBI drills and exercises;
  • Participation in the multi-agency Domestic Emergency Support Team and Foreign Emergency Support Team;
  • Providing technical solutions to federal, state, and local executive stakeholders during critical incidents for the purpose of managing and maintaining situational awareness of a critical incident or event; and
  • Design, development, training, and user support for the Operational Response and Investigative Online Network (ORION) case management tool.


The FBI considers special events to include significant domestic and international activities that may attract a potential threat to national security or attract significant criminal activity for which the Bureau has jurisdiction. CMU’s special events program plans, coordinates, identifies, and deploys appropriate Bureau resources to address these potential threats. Examples of events which meet these criteria include the Super Bowl, the Olympics and Paralympics, presidential inaugurations, presidential nominating conventions, and events designated by the Secretary of Homeland Security as either a National Special Security Event or awarded a Special Events Assessment Rating.

CMU’s special events planning works to coordinate federal, state, local, and international law enforcement partners and private sector officials to develop a comprehensive strategy, driven by a deliberate threat assessment, for supporting security efforts. As part of the planning process, personnel within the unit conduct site surveys, provide technical and operational guidance to field coordinators, participate in training exercises, provide program management oversight during event specific Command Post and Intelligence Operations and deploy assets to augment FBI field office and Legal Attaché resources.