FC: Sen. Hatch "commends" DOJ for Sklyarov arrest, IP prosecutions

From: Declan McCullagh (declanat_private)
Date: Tue Jul 31 2001 - 13:20:27 PDT

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    This is an excerpt from transcript of Monday's hearing of the Senate 
    Judiciary committee. "Free Sklyarov" activists had hoped that the case 
    would be brought up during the confirmation hearings, but I suspect this 
    isn't what they had in mind. Robert Mueller, of course, is President Bush's 
    pick to be FBI director.
    Info on hearing:
    Politech archive on U.S. v. Sklyarov:
    Politech archive on DMCA:
    "Congress is more than doubling number of federal copyright cops"
        SEN. HATCH: One of the areas of prosecution for which you are particularly
    known is that of computer and intellectual-property crime. As U.S. attorney for
    the northern district of California, you created a section called the Computer
    Hacking and Intellectual Property, or CHIP. Recently Attorney General Ashcroft
    recognized your success in the most sincere and flattering way possible by
    announcing the formation of nine additional CHIPs units around the country. And
    as you know, a subset of this area, criminal copyright enforcement, is of key
    importance to this committee. We've devoted considerable energy over the past
    number of years to Internet enforcement in particular.
        In 1997, we enacted the No Electronic Theft, or the NET Act, combining
    criminal penalties for certain non-commercial Internet pirates. In 1998, we
    passed the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, or the DMCA it's called, which
    helps combat trafficking and hacking devices designed to defeat technological
    protections for copyrighted material. We also enacted the Digital Theft
    Deterrence and Copyright Damages Improvement Act to speed the implementation of
    the NET Act and to improve on-line theft deterrence generally. And we have even
    earmarked additional funding for DOJ specifically for the investigation and
    prosecution of cyber-crime.
        The committee's work is starting to bear fruit in the form of criminal
    prosecutions of Internet piracy. So far this year, the number of NET Act
    prosecutions appears to be up, and we have just recently seen the first 
    prosecutions brought under the DMCA. Just this week, the Department of Justice
    announced a series of new prosecutions of Internet crimes.
        I commended the Department of Justice for what I hope is a commitment to
    cyber-crime enforcement, and I hope this becomes a priority for the FBI as 
    Would you please outline for us, if you can, your plan as FBI director on
    protecting the nation's computer infrastructure and intellectual property?
        MR. MUELLER: If I may go back briefly to what I saw when I took over as 
    attorney in San Francisco. We had Silicon Valley in my district, and one of the
    great issues was how do you protect -- or how do you not protect, but how 
    do you
    combat high-tech crime?
        And the first thing I had to do was determine what do you mean by high-tech
    crime, and I came to the conclusion that it should be broken down in four ways:
    First of all, computer intrusions, denial-of- service attacks; secondly, theft
    of intellectual property, economic espionage; third, frauds on the Internet,
    distribution of child pornography on the Internet; and fourthly, the theft of
    high-tech components such as computer chips, hard drives and the like, all of
    which are critical to the high-tech industry.
        We put together a unit in San Francisco and in San Jose because it was
    important to develop the expertise in the United States attorneys, the 
    United States attorneys, who would be handling these cases. It was important
    that we develop the relationship between the FBI agents, who had the expertise
    to do these cases, the assistant United States attorneys who were doing these
    cases, and the community.
        In addressing high-tech crime, it is critically important that we 
    develop the
    relationships with those victims of high-tech crime in the high-tech industry.
    And consequently, we will support -- should I be confirmed as the director of
    the FBI, the FBI will support not only the unit that was set up in the northern
    district of California, but also the other units to be set up, announced by the
    attorney general last week.
        One other point I might make, and this goes to the issue of working closely
    with the state and local authorities. There are too few investigators with the
    skills we need to address this. And one of the developments that has been 
    is what has been known or called a computer forensics lab, which was 
    in San Diego with a number of contributing participating agencies, both federal
    and local. And it is that type of combined enterprise that we are going to have
    to adopt if we are to address this new wave of separate technological crime in
    the future.
        SEN. HATCH: Thank you. Mr. Mueller, as you know, the 2002 Winter 
    Olympics in
    Salt Lake City, they're going to be the largest planned public safety and law
    enforcement in our country in the foreseeable future. The law enforcement
    community, including the FBI, has been working on the plans and 
    preparations for
    several years.
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