FBI, This Week: InfraGard—A Partnership to Protect America’s Infrastructure
December 21, 2017
Business executives, academics, and other members of the private sector are helping the FBI prevent, detect, and investigate threats against the country’s national security through a partnership called InfraGard.
Mollie Halpern: Business executives, academics, and other members of the private sector are helping the FBI prevent, detect, and investigate threats against the country’s national security through a partnership called InfraGard.
These subject matter experts provide industry-specific insight into 16 critical infrastructure sectors.
Matthew Espenshade, the assistant special agent in charge of the FBI’s Nashville office, says InfraGard fosters information sharing and relationship building, which benefits all involved.
Matthew Espenshade: If there is a cyber attack, you can’t go out at the time of the crisis and meet the person that you need to work with to resolve it and have a successful outcome. You have to have those relationships formed before the crisis happens—just like a physical crisis, a cyber crisis is no different.
Halpern: He goes on to say…
Espenshade: Having those trusted relationships, knowing that the FBI is an entity that they can count on and that we’re out front of the threats that they face every day.
Halpern: Those relationships extend beyond the goal of protecting the nation’s power grids, nuclear facilities, and other critical assets.
Espenshade: Cyber security from a corporate sense is, of course, one threat that we try to get out in front of, but when you talk to even InfraGard members, what they want from the FBI is a personal touch on cyber threats. “How do I keep my kid safe? What are the good practices?” So we talk about those regularly as well.
Halpern: The Nashville InfraGard is one of more than 80 such alliances across the country—each associated with an FBI field office. InfraGard consists of about 50,000 members.
Earlier this month, the FBI, the Nashville InfraGard, and the Tennessee Titans teamed up to benefit local charity Monroe Harding, which equips foster children with life skills.
The charity also provides the children with opportunities to use their Internet services and teaches them how to steer clear of online predators, scams, and other dangers.
Espenshade: I think the mark of a really great organization is we want to give back to the community. We do things for a reason that is greater than ourselves. And so we’ve kind of bonded that with our InfraGard program.
Halpern: To learn the requirements and benefits of becoming an InfraGard member, call your local field office or visit www.infragard.org. With FBI, This Week, I’m Mollie Halpern of the Bureau.
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