Our Investigative Mission
The U.S. Secret Service has a long and storied history of safeguarding America’s financial and payment systems from criminal exploitation. The agency was created in 1865 to combat the rise of counterfeit currency following the Civil War. As the U.S. financial system has evolved - from paper currency to plastic credit cards to, now, digital information - so too have our investigative responsibilities.
Today, Secret Service agents, professionals, and specialists work in field offices around the world to fight the 21st century’s financial crimes, which are increasingly conducted through cyberspace. These investigations continue to address counterfeit, which still undermines confidence in the U.S. dollar, but it is credit card fraud, wire and bank fraud, computer network breaches, ransomware, and other cyber-enabled financial crimes, that have become the focus of much of the Secret Service investigative work.
The Office of Investigations operates as a global network of multi-functional teams, conducting high-impact criminal investigations that safeguard the integrity of financial and payment systems, while fully supporting all protective requirements.
Our Investigative Mission Focus
Counter critical criminal threats to U.S. financial systems through criminal investigations and network intrusion responses.
Support our protective mission through investigation of threats, and safeguarding leaders, locations, and national special security events.
Strengthen and grow our workforce through identifying, developing, and equipping the best personnel.
Financial and Cyber Crime Investigations
Our primary investigative mission is to protect the financial infrastructure of the United States by investigating complex, often cyber-enabled financial crimes.
The threat of counterfeit U.S. currency to the financial system of the United States continues to evolve.
We are home to expert forensic analysts who employ advanced investigative and technological capabilities in support of the Secret Service integrated mission and law enforcement partners.
Protective Threat Investigations
The digital expertise we gain from our investigative mission plays an increasingly important role within our protective mission, ensuring that leaders, facilities, and events are secure from cybersecurity and other threats.
Support for National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
We are a key supporter of NCMEC, employing the range of our investigative expertise to assist in protecting children by Congressional mandate since 1994.
Impact of Our Criminal Investigations
For Fiscal Year 2020
Loss prevented by cyber financial crime investigations
Number of cyber financial crime arrests
Counterfeit currency seized