INL and FBI Cyber Investigations Pilot Project Donation Ceremony – Remarks by Amb. Sullivan

Ambassador Sullivan making a donation to the Economic and Organized Crime Office (EOCO) Executive Director, Mr. Frank Adu-Poku.

Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement and Federal Bureau of Investigation Cyber Investigations Pilot Project Donation Ceremony

Friday, May 10, 2019, 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.


Economic and Organized Crime Office (EOCO) Executive Director, Mr. Frank Adu-Poku,

Director-General of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID), Maame Yaa Tiwaa Addo-Danquah,

Colleagues visiting from Washington, FBI Unit Chief of the Africa Unit of International Operations, Bill Zolper,

and Director of INL’s Office of Africa and Middle East Programs, Amy Kirshner,

Graduates of this week’s training course form Ghana, Togo, Burkina Faso, and Nigeria,

All protocols observed:

Good morning.   Bonjour!

Congratulations on successfully completing the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Cyber Dark Web Investigations training!  It is a pleasure to join you here this morning at the Regional Training Center to recognize your professional achievements, made possible through stronger law enforcement partnership programs between the United States of Americaand the Republic of Ghana,as well as with Togo, Burkina Faso, and Nigeria.

Please allow me to also congratulate the FBI team here today for the great job you’ve done. Because we live in a digital age with countless electronic platforms on which our economies and access to information depend, we must remain vigilant against cyber threats.

We cannot afford to be complacent.  In fact, we must anticipate threats and challenges to effectively deter and defeat them. We know that some of the threats that others think are just science fiction in films or on television are actually a clear and present danger.   Those of you from Ghana may remember my favorite television show from when I served here previously.  Inspector Bediako would be amazed at the Brave New World of Cyber Crime.

Ghana has recognized the importance of fighting cybercrimes, and this FBI-sponsored training underscores our commitment to support you and others in the sub-region. Today, I am pleased to present the Government of Ghana with the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL)-funded mobile phone forensic extraction equipment,digital forensic tools, and software licenses to strengthen Ghana’s capacity to thwart and combat domestic crime and transnational organized crime.

Ghana’s ability to investigate cyber crime within its borders in an effect way benefits the common security of the United States, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Togo, and the global community. International law enforcement cooperation is essential to the stability and security of every democracy.

We live in a global society where crimes do not stop at international boundaries, and this is particularly true with cyber crime.  What directly affects one country indirectly affects the rest of world. Cyber crime actors include terrorists, malign state actors, organized criminal organizations, and hackers or “hacktivists” whose main goals are to: destabilize sovereign governments, dismantle economic infrastructure of corporations, and swindle unsuspecting citizens of their hard-earned money through deception by a few strokes on a computer keyboard or clicks on a cell phone.

We recognize, as Ghana does, the importance of a robust cyber security infrastructure.  In 2016, Ghana selected cybercrime and cyber security as one of the Security Governance Initiative (SGI) focus areas.  In fact, in the SGI Steering Committee meeting yesterday, our panels highlighted Ghana’s progress in this area, including Ghana’s accession to the Budapest Convention, which fosters international cooperation and information-sharing, and supports capacity-building of member nations.

I also want to applaud the strong law enforcement partnership among the United States and Ghana, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, and Togo in dismantling cybercrime, transnational, and organized crime networks.  Through law enforcement partnerships, we can help and learn from one another.

The training you have just completed provided you information about the Dark Web, virtual currencies, and online undercover techniques.  The tools you learned about and the skills you have gained will assist you in finding dark markets, tracing virtual currencies to identify subjects, and gathering evidence to prosecute criminals exploiting these technologies.

The network you have developed with professional colleagues is also an important feature of this past week. Our international law enforcement cooperation allows us all to fight crime more effectively.  For example, our U.S.-Ghana partnership led to the apprehension of two U.S. fugitives in the Northern Region. They are currently pending extradition to the United States to face justice.

Please receive my congratulations – felicitations – on completing this training and my best wishes in your professional endeavors to defend your countries and fellow citizens against cyber crimes. As you move forward in your work, know you can count on the continued support of the United States of America.

Thank you. Merci.