Inside the FBI's National Threat Operations Center
The FBI's National Threat Operations Center (NTOC) fields approximately 3,100 phone calls and electronic tips from the public at its facility in Clarksburg, West Virginia. Threat intake examiners rapidly evaluate each lead to determine the best course of action.
Greg Nelsen, Section Chief, FBI National Threat Operations Center: The role of the National Threat Operation Center is to act as a central intake for all telephone and electronic tips from the public to the FBI. The phone calls come in, our threat intake examiners evaluate the information in those electronic tips and phone calls, do some analysis, and then determine where that information needs to go for further action. Most often that’s either a field office, and in some cases it’s a law enforcement partner.
Title: Since 2012 the National Threat Operations Center, or NTOC, has processed thousands of actionable tips and public leads for special agents and intelligence analysts.
Title: Whether it's a tip on a missing child, a wanted fugitive, or Internet fraud, threat intake examiners work around the clock to receive and vet information from the public.
Voice of Threat Intake Examiner: Thank you for calling the FBI. Could I please have your name? And could you spell that? May I have a phone number in case we get disconnected? And may I have your date of birth?
Nelsen: NTOC is extremely important in protecting the American people. They cover all of our threats. They touch on counterterrorism, criminal, counterintelligence, domestic terrorism-type threats. They touch all of our program priorities and they're responsible for making the decisions from the start and getting that information where it needs to go quickly so the field offices can action that information.
Kari, Threat Intake Examiner, NTOC: We’re the front line; we’re the voice of the FBI. We get calls from everyone across the world, whether that be from outside the United States, inside the United States, for reporting anything that they think might be FBI-related. So it feels really good to know that we are such a large part of the organization and just having such an important mission, unique, but important, mission to the FBI.
Title: NTOC continues to evolve as it responds to major threats and an increasing volume of tips and leads generated from the public.
Title: Part of that evolution was transforming what was originally established as the Public Access Line to the National Threat Operations Center to better identify its role within today's FBI.
Trudy Ford, Assistant Section Chief, NTOC: We have changed quite a bit through our processes, our technology, as well as our staffing. We recognized the need to go from a call center to a full-fledged operations center and with that came additional infrastructure, resources, and protocols. We also needed to rebrand and change our name from the Public Access Line to the National Threat Operations Center, to be more focused on what we actually perform. And as part of the FBI's 111-year history, we adapt and evolve with whatever's happening in the world.
Nelsen: I think the future of NTOC is we’re going continue to grow, we're going to continue to get better at what we do. If the general public knew how we handled incoming tips, they'd be very proud of our employees, they'd be proud of the process, and they would have a lot of confidence in what we do here.
Kari: when they understand they're talking to the FBI, the callers are extremely grateful for the help they've gotten, for the assistance, and they understand that we're there to help them in the best way possible, so you can tell when a caller feels grateful for what you've done for them for that particular day.
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