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[ISN] Suburban computer forensics team sifts through scams
By Anna Marie Kukec
When a young employee of iRobot left the company known for the Roomba
self-traveling vacuum, a competing product soon hit the market. After a period
of surveillance, the company filed a lawsuit against the former employee for
taking trade secrets.
Also making robots for the military, the company requires high security and
hired Daniel Bellich, a former FBI agent who protected Pope John Paul II and
headed major heroin busts, and Keith Chval, a former head of the High-Tech
Crimes Unit at the Illinois Attorney General's office. They co-founded Claredon
Hills-based Protek International, which specializes in computer forensics and
Chval and Bellich do high-tech computer investigations to search for data, and
when necessary, combine that with some old-fashioned, low-tech Dumpster diving
to retrieve records. In the iRobot case, they later enlisted the U.S. marshals
office to escort them to search the homes of the suspect as well as his parents
"We found the girlfriend's laptop had just finished wiping out some data,"
Chval said. "And during the course of all this, he got a $250 million
Department of Defense contract. But it was later voided."
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