Tuberville helped pass the reauthorization bill to support the NCFI, where law enforcement officers come to Alabama from across the country to receive cybercrime training
WASHINGTON — U.S. Senator Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) yesterday spoke on the Senate floor to praise the important work of the National Computer Forensics Institute (NFCI) in Hoover, AL and highlight the institute’s impact on officers and public safety across the country. Senator Tuberville’s remarks come just after the Senate unanimously passed his bipartisan legislation, the National Computer Forensics Institute Reauthorization Act, which reauthorizes the operation of the Alabama-based NCFI. The bill also approves resources for federal officers to attend the law enforcement training center, which has previously only been available for local and state officials.
Excerpts from the Senator’s speech can be found below and his full remarks can be viewed here.
“Cybercriminals can hack pipelines and other key infrastructure systems that are crucial to our daily lives, and pertains to our national security. Officials trained at NCFI are a part of our front line of defense against these attacks. That front line — our local police officers, district attorneys, and state officials — know the people they serve best. I want those protecting my home and my state trained to identify and combat the latest threats — and I’m sure you do as well.”
“Earlier this year, after a madman terrorized shoppers at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, NCFI-trained graduates were able to act quickly and support the police response. They used what they learned to conduct a forensic exam of a Go-Pro camera and a cell phone used by the shooter. That crucial video evidence is currently being used in the prosecution.”
“Brave men and women in law enforcement across the country are willing and able to protect Americans from all crime, including cybercrime, but they need the tools and resources to continue to do so effectively. While some in Congress and the current administration have worked to shrink the size and strength of our law enforcement, I am unapologetic with my support for the men and women in blue. We must continue to provide specialized resources that all of them need to do their jobs. That’s why I joined a group of colleagues from both sides of the aisle to introduce the National Computer Forensics Institute Reauthorization Act.”
“The National Computer Forensics Institute is an example of a state’s ingenuity and foresight — a group of individuals identifying a gap that needed to be filled and providing a service with national benefits. The success of the Institute represents the impact state leaders and Congress can have on the entire country when we work together to support innovative and pragmatic solutions to our biggest problems. Alabama is proud of the National Computer Forensics Institute, and we’re proud to provide cutting-edge training to many Americans and our brave law enforcement.”
Senator Tuberville cosponsored the legislation with U.S. Senators John Cornyn (R-TX), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Richard Shelby (R-AL), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI).
In 2006, the Alabama Office of Prosecution Services and the Alabama District Attorneys Association saw the need for a more coordinated effort to train law enforcement officers, prosecutors, and judges in digital evidence. Those agencies outlined a plan to bring that training to more of our law enforcement officials — and formed a unique and important partnership with the U.S. Secret Service to create a center for forensics education for state and local law enforcement officials.
Thanks to their innovative thinking, the National Computer Forensics Institute, also known as NCFI, opened in 2008, under a roof provided by the City of Hoover, Alabama. The NCFI opened with a $4 million budget and just 264 students.
Today, due to continued support from Congress, the NCFI now taps into a $13 million annual budget to train more than 4,000 students from across the country per year. To date, more than 19,000 state and local officers, prosecutors, and judges representing all 50 states have been trained at the institute in the heart of Alabama.
The NCFI focuses on teaching officials how to investigate cyber and electronic crime — always accounting for emerging tech and novel digital capabilities — to prepare graduates to combat cyber-attacks and personal data theft. The skills learned at the NCFI also prepare law enforcement officers to identify and utilize key digital data during criminal investigations. The crucial reauthorization will allow the NCFI to keep training thousands of officers a year in Alabama to keep communities across the country safe. Graduates have reported utilizing their training in more than 578,000 digital forensics exams.
Learn more about the NCFI here.
Senator Tommy Tuberville represents Alabama in the United States Senate and is a member of the Senate Armed Services, Agriculture, Veterans’ Affairs, and HELP Committees.