Today, the FBI is doing something it rarely does — talking, in public, about spies.
In a nationwide advertising campaign launching today that includes bus shelters, billboards and a website, the FBI is targeting corporate espionage — and encouraging employees of American corporations to be wary of spies in their midst.
“We’re doing something we’ve never done before, and it’s almost counterintuitive in the espionage business,” FBI Counterintelligence Assistant director Frank Figliuzzi told CNBC Thursday. “We’re talking to the general public about the threat from economic espionage.”According to Figliuzzi, the current FBI caseload shows that secrets worth more than $13 billion have been stolen from American companies — often by insiders or former insiders at the companies that have been victimized. The FBI says its arrests for economic espionage have doubled in the last four years, and that it has already surpassed last year’s arrest total halfway through this fiscal year.
The FBI says the sheer scale of economic espionage against the nation’s top companies threatens America’s economic and technical dominance of the global economy.