In 2022, Cellebrite generated about $3.5 million in revenue in Florida.
Marque Teegardin, Cellebrite's Americas president
Economic Backbone: Global Florida
Israeli digital forensics company Cellebrite provides tools for Florida detectives.
Cellebrite, an Israel-based digital intelligence company, works with law enforcement agencies to uncover data from cellphones and other digital devices — a practice now considered as routine as dusting for fingerprints in a crime scene. In 2019, for example, when the University of Central Florida Police Department got a tip that a 19-year-old student had modified an assault-style rifle into an illegal, fully automatic machine gun — and possessed the gun on campus — it was data unlocked from the student’s phone that helped establish he was the person who modified the gun. UCF police say the technoloy has also helped solve sexual battery, stalking and domestic violence cases.
Founded in 1999, and with an estimated 6,900 federal, state and local law enforcement and other customers, Cellebrite has a growing presence in Florida with a training facility in Pinellas County and a training affiliation with Florida International University in Miami. In 2022, the company generated about $3.5 million in revenue in Florida.
“Especially in the Sunshine State, we have assisted agencies in solving several crimes, from homicides to drug trafficking,” says Marque Teegardin, president of the Americas for Cellebrite. “Soon, we are excited to expand our capabilities to assist with the unfortunate rise in human trafficking. Today, human trafficking is a $150-billion industry, and Florida has currently ranked the third-highest state for trafficking in the nation.”
The company, which has 1,000 employees worldwide, is working with Exodus Road, a Colorado group that helps law enforcement target human trafficking. "In 2015, Cellebrite tools donated to Exodus Road were used to crack one of the largest human trafficking syndicates in Thailand’s modern history, leading to the recovery of 400 Rohingya trafficking survivors and the arrest of 50 corrupt government officials," says Matt Parker, an Exodus Road co-founder. “The power of Cellebrite technology in the fight against human trafficking, criminal syndication and illicit trade became clear.”
Cellebrite's tools are not without controversy, but the company maintains its strict licensing policies, and restrictions govern how customers utilize the tools and that digital evidence is gathered only under lawful circumstances. The company says it does not license its technology in Belarus, China, Hong Kong, Macau, Russia and Venezuela due to concerns regarding human rights and data security. "We sell our solutions only to companies, bodies and agencies that abide by the terms that govern its proper use," the company says.