Computer Sleuths Ply Internet
Since its launch only about a month ago, the South Carolina Computer Crime Center in Columbia, S.C., has worked on some 263 cybercrime cases. The center was created using over $5.6 million in federal grants and was recently enriched with an additional $2.2 million in funds.
State and federal specialists have worked together to make 20 arrests so far, says Kathryn Richardson of the State Law Enforcement Division (SLED), which supervises the center’s daily actions. Richardson adds that the center has contributed to a number of other arrests in collaboration with other police agencies.
The center also provides training to police officers from across the state and will establish a liaison with high-tech firms, officials say.
Majid Hassan, president of the High Technology Crime Investigation Association, says the center has helped break down former “territories and areas where other people could not encroach on.”
SLED supervisory special agent Lt. Chip Johnson says every day, specialists search through 5.8 TB of data, corresponding to 5,800 Encyclopedia Britannica sets.
He says pedophile cases comprise almost two-thirds of the center’s cases, adding that agents often go online pretending to be juveniles to catch offenders.
Abstracted by the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center(NLECTC) from the Greenville News (SC) (12/22/03) P. 14B; Barnett, Ron.