Agency Spotlight—Branches of the FBI Part 1

by | Aug 14, 2017

Last Updated June 3, 2024


As we continue to look at the Federal Bureau of Investigation this month, the next series of posts will look at the branches of the FBI. Some of these branches are larger than the others, but all work together to help keep our nation safe.

branchesNational Security Branch

This branch of the FBI was created in response to a presidential directive to establish a “National Security Service” in September 2005. It combines the missions, capabilities, and resources of the FBI’s counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and intelligence elements.


To detect, deter, and disrupt national security threats to the U.S. and her interests.


To develop and implement a strategic approach to protecting U.S. national security interests.


There are five components that make up this branch.


To identify, understand, and combat threats posed by foreign intelligence services. They investigate foreign intelligence activities within the U.S., targeting both traditional and non-traditional threats using a combination of intelligence and law enforcement techniques to investigate espionage activities.


This is the FBI’s top priority. The help neutralize terrorist cells/operatives in the U.S., help dismantle extremist networks worldwide, and cut off financing and other support. Their overall goal is to eliminate the rise of terrorism, international and domestic, to the U.S and interests abroad.

High-Value Detainee Interrogation Group

This is an interagency group administered by the FBI that brings together personnel from the U.S. Intelligence Community to conduct lawful interrogations. They also serve as the government’s focal point for interrogation best practices, training, and scientific research.

Terrorist Screening Center

Stemming from the 9/11 attacks, it was created in 2003. It maintains the U.S. government’s consolidated Terrorist Watchlist, which is a single database of identifying information about those suspected or known to be involved in terrorist activity. This watchlist is one of the most effective counterterrorism tools for the U.S. government.

Weapons of Mass Destruction—WMD

Created in 2006, they support a cohesive and coordinated approach to incidents involving chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear (CBRN) material. They focus on outreach, intelligence, operational response, and investigative capabilities.


branchesInformation Technology Branch

This branch is composed of three IT divisions:

  • Enterprise Services Division—delivers reliable and effective technology solutions to meet the FBI’s strategic goals and objectives.
  • Applications and Data Division—decrease time to data awareness of available information and make software tools available to the workforce when/where they need it.
  • Infrastructure Division—provides the FBI with IT infrastructure services that are innovative.


Provide effective IT to the entire FBI in an environment that is consistent with intelligence and law enforcement capabilities, as well as ensure reliability and accessibility by members at every location or at any moment in time.


Criminal, Cyber, Response, and Services Branch

This branch was created in response to the 9/11 attacks. They are responsible for investigating financial crime, white-collar crime, violent crime, organized crime, public corruption, violations of individual civil rights, and drug related crimes.

They also oversee all computer based crime related to counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and criminal threats against the U.S. This branch deploys FBI agents, analysts, and computer scientists who work in conjunction with other federal, state, and regional agencies.


Human Resources Branch

This branch is responsible for all internal human resource needs of the FBI and for conducting the FBI Academy and to train new FBI agents.

The next posts in this series will look at the Intelligence Branch and Part 3 will look at the Science and Technology Branch.


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