The Investigative Mission
Since its inception in 1865, the Secret Service was created to investigate and prevent counterfeiting. Today the agency’s investigative mission has evolved from enforcing counterfeiting laws to safeguarding the payment and financial systems of the United States from a wide range of financial and computer-based crimes. To combat these crimes, the Secret Service has adopted a proactive approach, using advanced technologies and capitalizing on the power of task force partnerships.
The U.S. Secret Service has a pivotal role in securing the nation’s critical infrastructures, specifically in the areas of cyber, banking and finance. Other directives address the need to combat transnational organized crime that targets the citizens and financial institutions of the United States. In response to the globalization of technology- based threats, the U.S. Secret Service’s investigative mission abroad is growing as well, creating the need for a heightened overseas liaison presence.
Today, multi-disciplined forensics experts, investigative experts and intelligence analysts provide rapid response and critical information in support of financial analysis, infrastructure protection and criminal investigations.
An ultraviolet light source is used to verify the authenticity of a questioned note.
The Secret Service constantly implements and evaluates prevention and response measures to guard against electronic crimes as well as other computer related fraud.
Special agents comb through seized evidence following the arrests of several individuals involved in a counterfeiting operation.
- Hugh McCulloch – Secretary of the Treasury
A high powered microscope is used by investigators to verify the printing method used to create a collection of deceptive notes.
An investigative assistant examines the print characteristics of a counterfeit bank note.
A counterfeit specialist verifies the authenticity of this genuine $100 banknote.
Secret Service examiners extract stolen account data from a device attached to the inside of a payment terminal.
Secret Service polygraph examiners assess the credibility of an examinee’s statements by evaluating change in specific physiological indicators during an examination.
Forensic photographer uses alternative light sources to visualize fingerprints found on evidence.
The Secret Service has the only International Ink Library, which contains more than 12,000 ink samples used in forensic examinations.
Forensic document examiners evaluate threatening letters to determine authorship.
Forensic scientists use state-of-the-art techniques to enhance audio and video to assist field investigators.