Law Enforcement Memorial, Jacksonville Division
Message from the Director
I’ve always believed one of the greatest things about the FBI is how personally invested our people and partners feel in it—not just while they’re employees or involved in programs like the National Academy or Citizens Academy, but well afterward, too. I think that’s because when someone chooses to devote their career to the FBI or to join us as a partner, they’re doing more than just taking a job or initiating a business relationship. They’re committing to a mission. And when a person makes a conscious choice to serve others by becoming a part of the FBI Family, it's not at all surprising to me that they keep caring deeply about the FBI and its mission long after they’ve left.
We’re grateful for that continued connection and we want to make it even stronger. So we’re renewing our focus on communicating with our extended FBI Family—with folks like you—and this new Alumni E-Brief is just one of the ways we’re doing that.
Continuing to share information and fostering even stronger relationships with all of you is essential, because I know that when just one or two of our cases seem to dominate the headlines, it can be hard to hear anything else through the noise. But working with our partners, the FBI’s 38,000 men and women are doing headline-worthy work across the country and around the world, day in and day out. Through the Alumni E-Brief, we want to share with you some of that headline-worthy work that maybe hasn’t made the news—but that really matters.
So I hope you’ll find the Alumni E-Brief useful and informative, and most importantly, I hope it makes you as proud as it makes me of this FBI Family, and the work we’re doing to protect the American people and uphold the Constitution together.
Thanks for all you’ve done for the Bureau, and for continuing to care so much about the FBI.
By the Numbers
A recent Basic Field Training Course (BFTC) graduated 182 New Agent Trainees (NATs) at the FBI Academy. The class was comprised of 71 (39%) female NATs and 111 (61%) male NATs, ranging in age from 26 to 45 with an average age of 31. The class included 141 new hires and 41 onboard FBI employees.
Their backgrounds included lawyers, scientists, linguists, accountants, military service and law enforcement. A total of 93 (51%) NATs had prior military or law enforcement experience.Those backgrounds include a Naval Academy graduate who earned his Blue Nose Certification (crossing the Arctic circle), a former cellular and molecular pathologist, and a pharmacist. Over 48% of the class held advanced degrees with three having a doctorate degree.
Over 21 different languages are spoken by the NATs class, to include: Albanian, Arabic, Azerbaijan, Chinese, French, German, Haitian-Creole, Hindi, Korean, Kyrgyz, Mandarin, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi, American Sign, Slovak, Spanish, Russian, Thai, Ukrainian, Urdu
The top physical fitness performer scored 34 out of 40 possible points on the Physical Fitness Test which included timed sit-ups, a 300m sprint, pushups, and a 1.5 mile run. Another seven trainees scored more than 30 points on the PFT. The class Top Gun scored a perfect 100% on three pistol and one carbine qualification courses.
Upon graduation, the NATs will report to 37 field offices and 50 resident agencies. Offices of assignment range from San Juan, Puerto Rico to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma to Honolulu, Hawaii.
Message from the Assistant Director, OPA
Welcome to the second edition of the Alumni E-Brief (AEB). When the Office of Public Affairs released the AEB last month, we weren’t sure how it would be received. Well, I have to tell you it has been overwhelmingly positive. We value the relationship with the FBI family, and I expect the distribution list will grow as we identify and open dialogue with more alumni organizations. We’ll continue to ask these various groups to forward the monthly AEB link to their membership.
From the news, you can see the FBI has been busy lately, everywhere from Maui to Massachusetts. A new class of FBI agents recently graduated from the Academy and 10 members of the Society of Former Special Agents attended the graduation to see the high quality of our current recruits.
Through the monthly AEB, we’ll continue to provide up-to-date information on the state of the Bureau, operations, representation to Congress and most importantly, maintain our relationship with you, the extended FBI family. Our hope is those of you engaging the media, speaking to local civic groups, schools, the community, or just talking to your friends and neighbors will find the AEB a useful and helpful source of accurate information.
Please email in any suggestions on content as well as any critiques or comments to Alumni@fbi.gov.
Cathy L. Milhoan
Assistant Director, Office of Public Affairs
The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) issued a bulletin this summer warning of an increase in tech support scams targeting older adults.
The trend follows an overall increase in complaints and losses over the past five years. The IC3 has received an average of 652,000 complaints per year since 2018.
Learn more in the most recent annual report.
Behind the scenes footage of Operation Cross Country, a national initiative that the FBI has led over the last 13 years.
The FBI Citizens Academy offers participants an up-close look behind the FBI seal and fosters a greater understanding of the role of federal law enforcement.
- FBI Releases Preliminary Statistics on Law Enforcement Officer Deaths in the Line of Duty from January Through July 2023
- Internet Safety for Kids: FBI Denver Announces Safe Online Surfing Internet Challenge
- Proud Boys Leader Sentenced to 22 Years in Prison for Seditious Conspiracy and Other Charges Related to U.S. Capitol Breach
In Case You Missed It
Cliff's Crew—a group of youth mentored by retired NFL Seattle Seahawks player Cliff Avril—visited the FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C., where they toured the FBI Experience and met with Associate Deputy Director Brian Turner. Learn more.
This series features stories, images, and videos produced by the team that manages fbi.gov.
The FBI Prepares for AI and Quantum Computing
By Daniel Polk
Special Agent, Atlanta Division
Director Wray speaks at the FBI Atlanta Cyber Threat Summit (FACTS) on July 26, 2023.
“We assess that AI is going to enable threat actors to develop increasingly powerful, sophisticated, customizable, and scalable capabilities—and it's not going to take them long to do it.”
Director Christopher Wray
Artificial intelligence is here, and quantum computing is not far behind. This was a recurring theme of the FBI Atlanta Cyber Threat Summit (FACTS) on Wednesday, July 26th.
Director Wray and Assistant Director Bryan Vorndran of Cyber Division joined key leaders from the National Security Agency (NSA), Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) to discuss some of the challenges posed by this emerging technology.
FACTS was hosted at the Georgia Tech Research Institute where emerging technology like 5G, artificial intelligence and quantum computing is researched. Around 150 private sector attendees from leading Fortune 500 companies joined the event to learn how to better navigate the rapidly evolving cyber landscape.
Director Wray opened FACTS by pointing out that the same generative AI technologies that can be used to save people time by automating tasks can also be used by criminals to “generate deepfakes or malicious code.”
As an example, he described one case in which a darknet user allegedly created malware using a generative AI program. Wray said the user "then instructed other cybercriminals on how to use it to recreate malware strains and techniques based on common variants."
"And that’s really just the tip of the iceberg," he continued. "We assess that AI is going to enable threat actors to develop increasingly powerful, sophisticated, customizable, and scalable capabilities—and it's not going to take them long to do it."
Wray said that the Chinese government is particularly well-positioned to use the increasing powers of AI and machine learning against the United States, especially in conjunction with data it has stolen from the United States.
AD Vorndran addressed the risks that come when companies integrate tools like ChatGPT into their workspace, “Many companies are eager to bring AI into their work environments, but that only increases the attack surface for malicious actors.”
Victor Zhora, deputy chairman of Ukraine’s Cybersecurity systems, is intimately aware of how nation-states like Russia intend to use emerging technology to target his country’s infrastructure. Speaking to FACTS attendees, Zhora said, “Use of these technologies to attack, disrupt and inflict chaos is an integral part of Russia’s hybrid war.”
While FACTS showcased unique threats posed by AI, it also demonstrated the opportunities of machine learning.
“It turns out humans are good at precision, and AI is good at recall. It is a complementary pairing if we do it right,” said Tejas Patel, a senior program manager at DARPA. Patel cited studies from DARPA that show how in proper environments AI could help identify patterns in datasets that could rapidly help a human analyze where malicious activity exists.
"A quantum computer is coming. It might still be 10 to 15 years away, but one day that computer will be turned on. When it is, anything with our current encryption will be a target. We need to start preparing now for that day."
Morgan Adamski, chief, NSA Cybersecurity Collaboration Center
The key is creating the right environment for the machine to learn. “If you give AI a narrow problem it can be great at solving it, but if you give it a general problem it can be way off,” said Manos Antonakakis, a professor and researcher from Georgia Tech.
Unlike other technologies that are still years away, FACTS showed how tools like AI are unexpectedly here now and here to stay. Bob Lawton, the chief of Mission Capabilities for ODNI, said, “AI is already here, and we are behind. It feels like we are in 1985. At this point, I consider the work I am doing right now with AI to be the most important work in my entire career.” Lawton is a career intelligence officer and has worked across several threat domains and intelligence programs for almost two decades.
The conversation throughout the day at FACTS moved from present challenges with AI to the future challenges of quantum computing. Quantum computing uses principles of computer science, physics and mathematics to solve complex problems much faster than traditional computers.
Morgan Adamski, chief of NSA’s Cybersecurity Collaboration Center, warned that “a quantum computer is coming. It might still be 10 to 15 years away, but one day that computer will be turned on. When it is, anything with our current encryption will be a target. We need to start preparing now for that day. If we start planning and partnering together now, then we will be better prepared for the future.”
The importance of partnership around emerging technology comes at a critical time in the life of the FBI and its cyber program.
“For 115 years, the Bureau has been charged with protecting the American people and upholding the Constitution," Director Wray said. "And the men and women of the FBI work tirelessly every day to fulfill that mission—but we could not do it without partners—without partners like you,” he said to the FACTS attendees.
Vorndran reassured the private sector partners of the Bureau’s readiness: “The FBI’s cyber program is not your grandparent’s FBI. We want to be a partner with you, in the ways that are most helpful to you.”
The crisis of stress-induced health issues and suicide in the law enforcement population brings to light the benefits of a confidential resource always available to officers — chaplaincy.
Learn more in the Law Enforcement Bulletin
Famous Cases and Criminals
George "Machine Gun" Kelly
He probably never uttered those now famous words,“Don’t Shoot G-Men, Don’t Shoot.” But George “Machine Gun” Kelly—really, George Kelly Barnes—earned a notorious place in FBI history after kidnapping a wealthy oil magnate in 1933 and being associated with that phrase.
The FBI Alumni E-Brief is distributed through our alumni and family organizations. These groups share it through their membership lists, we do not maintain an individual email list. Currently, the groups receiving the AEB are:
- The Society of FBI Alumni
- Society of Former Special Agents of the FBI
- FBI Agents Association
- FBI National Citizens Academy Association
- FBI National Academy Associates
- FBI National Executive Institute Associates
- FBI LEEDA
If you are aware of another group to assist in sharing this AEB with the FBI family, please let us know. You can also send content suggestions, photo or story submissions, as well as critiques to email@example.com.