FAU signs a cooperation agreement with the Bayerisches Landeskriminalamt (Bavarian Office of Criminal Investigation)
For more effective cybercrime investigations
In view of the growing importance of information technology for society, cybercrime is becoming more and more of a threat and opens up entirely new possibilities for committing crimes in the digital space. At the same time, however, it also opens up new possibilities for law enforcement. Bearing this in mind, FAU and the Bavarian Office of Criminal Investigation signed a cooperation agreement in the area of IT forensics/digital forensics on October 20, 2023.
The partnership focuses on current developments in the area of cybercrime and new law enforcement methods as well as on legal challenges entailed by using “forensic computing.” The shared objective of pooling resources in this way is to drive forward law enforcement in the area of cybercrime and encourage crime prevention.
FAU and the Bavarian law enforcement authorities responsible for tackling cybercrime are already regularly in contact with each other, and this is what sparked the idea for the new cooperation agreement. FAU scientists focusing on law and computing science have been conducting research for several years now into modern means of investigation for crimes involving the internet, the darknet, or cryptocurrencies and on the impact ever more powerful modern IT systems have on criminal and criminal procedural law, for example in the research training group “Cybercrime and Forensic Computing” funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG).
“The cooperation with the Bavarian Office of Criminal Investigation now opens the door to a closer partnership, where we can continue to pool our resources as colleagues and move our collaboration to the next level,” stresses FAU President Prof. Dr. Joachim Hornegger. FAU already has a similar and successful partnership with the Central Office for Cybercrime in Bavaria, and Hornegger hopes that the new partnership will prove just as beneficial for both parties. “Partnerships such as these that merge current findings from science and research with practical law enforcement are extremely important in any area of crime such as this that threatens the stability of our economic system and our society as a whole. Our innovative FAU is looking forward to our future collaboration.”
Harald Pickert, President of the Bavarian Office of Criminal Investigation, also believes that the cooperation is an important and sensible step in view of the rapidly advancing digitalization and our increasing dependency on digital systems: “Faced with the challenges of recognizing cybercrime, attributing crimes correctly from a legal and technical point of view and finally faultlessly securing all digital forensic evidence of relevance to the proceedings, law enforcement authorities have to continue to develop and move with the times. In our increasingly digitalized society, each company, each individual is a potential victim of cyber attack. The partnership we have now entered into with FAU will allow us to tackle this situation with a reliable partner at our side. This collaboration between law enforcement and research offers us the means to face up to the lawless and highly technological world of cyber criminals with practice-oriented research and to be able to offer our police officers innovative tools for their work.”
Research into malware is a particularly important aspect. “We are aware that cybercrime is an innovative area that uses constantly evolving technology. Law enforcement agencies have to be similarly innovative to keep up. That is also an issue to be explored by scientific research,” according to Prof. Dr. Felix Freiling, Chair of Computer Science 1 (IT Security Infrastructures) and spokesperson of the DFG research training group “Cybercrime and Forensic Computing”.
Working closely together with the law enforcement authorities will provide a detailed insight into issues the law enforcement authorities face in their daily work now and in the future. These insights can subsequently be transferred into scientific theory.
The collaboration between FAU and the Bavarian Office of Criminal Investigation will make a major contribution towards conducting more effective cybercrime investigations and providing more effective protection against one of the most challenging areas of crime.
Prof. Dr. Felix Freiling
Chair of Computer Science 1 (IT Security Infrastructures) at the Department of Computer Science (INF)
Spokesman for the DFG research training group “Cybercrime and forensic computing”
Phone: +49 9131 85 69901