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FBI hunts for attackers online



By Staff and reports

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Federal police are boosting Internet surveillance and have set up a Web site to tap into details surrounding the plane attacks in Washington D.C. and New York.

Citing anonymous industry sources, Wired News reported that just hours after the attacks, FBI agents visited Internet service and email providers to ask for permission to place its surveillance system on their networks.

U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft urged the public to use the www.ifccfbi.gov Web site to come forward with any information they may have about the terror attacks that devastated the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

"It takes courage to come forward in situations like this and I urge anyone with information that may be helpful to the authorities to use these resources," said Ashcroft.

"Thousands of FBI agents in all of the field offices across the country ... (and internationally) assisted by personnel from other Department of Justice agencies are cooperating in this investigation," Ashcroft told reporters in Washington.

The Naturalization Service, the U.S. Marshals Service, Bureau of Prisons and the Drug Enforcement Administration would also assist in the investigation.

The FBI is also reportedly using the controversial Carnivore spy system to monitor electronic communication on popular Internet service provider networks including Microsoft's Hotmail.

"Hotmail officials have been receiving calls from the San Francisco FBI office since mid-(Tuesday) morning and are cooperating with their expedited requests for information about a few specific accounts," an anonymous source told Wired News.

"Most of the account names start with the word 'Allah' and contain messages in Arabic."

Carnivore is a specially configured Windows computer engineered to sit on an Internet network to monitor Internet messages.

Reuters contributed to this report.








RELATED SITE:
• IFCC site to report terrorist activity

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