Reports: FBI Shutters Public E-Mail System

By Matthew Hicks  |  Posted 2005-02-04 Print this article Print

The bureau shuts down an e-mail system as it investigates a potential security breach, according to multiple reports.

The FBI has shut down an e-mail system it uses to communicate with the public as it investigates a potential security breach, according to multiple media reports Friday. Citing FBI officials, The Associated Press reported that the e-mail system is run by a private company and is used for sharing non-sensitive information with the public. CBS News also reported that the accounts use the domain name and that the FBI bought at least a portion of the affected accounts from AT&T.
The e-mail system used for communicating on case files, internal information and classified information was unaffected, according to a special agent from the FBIs Atlanta office cited by the AP.
A spokesperson at the FBIs national office refused to confirm with the details of the AP report and e-mail outage. Calls to the FBIs Atlanta office were not immediately returned. Click here to read about the FBIs re-evaluation of a controversial e-mail snooping system. The AP reported that the FBI also is in the process of switching e-mail accounts. News of the potential e-mail security breach follows a report released Thursday that criticized the FBIs management of its IT systems. The Department of Justices Inspector General specifically reported that an FBI automated case management system called the Virtual Case File would need to be scrapped or undergo significant work. The FBI responded by saying it was disappointed with delays in the case-management system but said the bureau was improving its IT management. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest security news, reviews and analysis. And for insights on security coverage around the Web, take a look at Security Center Editor Larry Seltzers Weblog.
Matthew Hicks As an online reporter for, Matt Hicks covers the fast-changing developments in Internet technologies. His coverage includes the growing field of Web conferencing software and services. With eight years as a business and technology journalist, Matt has gained insight into the market strategies of IT vendors as well as the needs of enterprise IT managers. He joined Ziff Davis in 1999 as a staff writer for the former Strategies section of eWEEK, where he wrote in-depth features about corporate strategies for e-business and enterprise software. In 2002, he moved to the News department at the magazine as a senior writer specializing in coverage of database software and enterprise networking. Later that year Matt started a yearlong fellowship in Washington, DC, after being awarded an American Political Science Association Congressional Fellowship for Journalist. As a fellow, he spent nine months working on policy issues, including technology policy, in for a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives. He rejoined Ziff Davis in August 2003 as a reporter dedicated to online coverage for Along with Web conferencing, he follows search engines, Web browsers, speech technology and the Internet domain-naming system.

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