DOD creates cybercrimes position

The Defense Department has created a senior executive service position to oversee its computer forensics laboratory and investigator training program.

The 30-day Office of Personnel and Management notice for an executive director of the Defense Cybercrimes Center will come out within a week, said Brig. Gen. Francis Taylor, commanding general of the Air Force Office of Special Investigations.

In supervising as many as 80 employees and a $12.5 million budget, the director will lay out a long-term strategy for the center, including how to best serve nearly 3,800 DOD law enforcement special agents who take courses with the Department of Defense Computer Investigations Training Program and send materials to the Air Force's forensics lab for examination, he said.

In addition to some technical expertise, the candidate should have "proven management and leadership ability in programs of national importance," Taylor said. And having DOD or law enforcement experience is important but not required.

Taylor, who is retiring July 1, is turning over his command to Air Force Brig. Gen. (Select) Leonard Patterson May 11, so the new director will report to Patterson.

"We want to cast our net wider in government, rather than just Defense," Taylor said regarding the hiring of a director, as well as the center's work in government. He would like the director to turn the forensics laboratory and training program into an institute that would serve as a resource for academics, private industry and graduate students.

"No one's ahead in this business if everyone else is falling behind," Taylor said of computer crime. President Clinton's May 1998 Presidential Decision Directive 63 called on federal agencies to work with private industry and academia to implement critical infrastructure protection plans for physical and electronic systems.

DCITP, which began in 1998, has trained nearly 1,500 DOD law enforcement special agents. The Defense Cybercrimes Center director can help DCITP implement distance — learning technology so that the nearly 3,800 special agents can take the classes, which last from two days to six weeks, Taylor said.

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