VSVictim Services

Victim Being Consoled

Overview 

The Victim Services Division (VSD) is responsible for ensuring that victims of crimes investigated by the FBI are afforded the opportunity to receive the services and notification as required by federal law and the Attorney General Guidelines on Victim and Witness Assistance. The VSD manages the day-to-day operational aspects of the Victim Assistance Program (VAP) in the 56 FBI field offices across the country as well as the FBI’s international offices. In addition, the VSD is responsible for providing training and information that helps to equip FBI agents and other FBI personnel to work effectively with victims.

Mission:

To inform, support, and assist victims in navigating the aftermath of crime and the criminal justice process with dignity and resilience.

Vision:

Empowerment, dignity, and justice for every victim and global leadership to meet the evolving needs of victims now and in the future.

The VSD is directly responsible for several special programs:

  • The Terrorism and Special Jurisdictions program provides emergency assistance to injured victims and families of victims murdered in terrorist attacks within the U.S. and outside the country and serves as a permanent point-of-contact for terrorism victims within the FBI.

  • The Child Pornography Victim Assistance program coordinates assistance and notification services for child victims of pornography and their guardians.

  • The Child Victim Services program provides support to child victims and witnesses of federal crimes through investigative forensic interviews and offers indirect support to field victim specialists through consultation with child victim program coordinators. The team is focused on ensuring that any interactions with child victims or witnesses are tailored to the child's stage of development and minimize any additional trauma to the child.

  • The Field Office Victim Assistance program places victim specialists in FBI field offices across the country to personally assist victims of federal crimes investigated by the division or field office where they work.

Victim Notification System 

The FBI partners with the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Federal Bureau of Prisons in the free, automated Victim Notification System (VNS). Available in English and Spanish, VNS is designed to provide victims with information and notifications regarding their cases.

VNS notifications that may be provided can include information about investigative status, criminal charges filed, outcome of charges, scheduled court proceedings, and the offender’s custody status (e.g., placement in community corrections centers, furlough, release, or death). All VNS notifications contain a Victim Identification Number (VIN) and a Personal Identification Number (PIN) that will allow access to VNS via the Internet and the Call Center. Registration with VNS will provide access to all VNS information and can be completed at https://www.notify.usdoj.gov. The VNS Call Center is also available to provide information at 1-866-DOJ-4YOU (1-866-365-4968). VIN and PIN are required to use the Call Center.

Victim Resources