The Defense Security Service (DSS) has released its annual unclassified report titled Targeting U.S. Technologies, A Trend Analysis of Reporting from Defense Industry, for Fiscal Year 2012 (FY12). The 64-page document is an analysis of foreign collection efforts and espionage that targets U.S. technology, intellectual property, trade secrets and proprietary information. It is an important report that should be reviewed by all members of industry to understand the importance of counter-espionage in your security efforts and for reporting suspicious contact efforts to appropriate agencies.
The Executive Summary of the report discusses Regional Trends and FY12 Collection Trends. DSS has established 5 regions of the world to group data – East Asia and The Pacific, Near East, Europe and Eurasia, South and Central Asia and Other Regions (Western Hemisphere and Africa). DSS also identifies 5 collector affiliations (commercial, individual, government, etc), 11 methods of operation (attempted acquisition of technology, academic solicitation, conferences or trade shows, etc), and the top 10 targeted technologies (information systems, aeronautics systems, electronics, etc).
Special Focus Area
The special focus area for FY12 is U.S. missile technology (USMT). USMT is essential in high-altitude flights and space operations, in particle accelerators, and fusion or fusion reactions processes. Attempts to obtain USMT from industry has risen 86% from FY11 to FY12. The primary region of origin for the collection efforts was East Asia and the Pacific; collector affiliation most often identified was commercial entities; and the methods of operation most often used were attempted acquisition of technology.
The bulk of the report analyzes each of the 5 regions and identifies which collection affiliations are most active, which methods of operation are most used and which technologies are targeted most often. The report also provides a comparative analysis of FY11 and FY12 data, an outlook on future efforts, and case studies. A summary of regions reveals the following:
East Asia and the Pacific
The collector affiliation most often identified was government affiliated; the methods of operation most often used were suspicious network activity and attempted acquisition of technology; and the most often targeted technology was electronics.
The collector affiliation most often identified was government affiliated; the methods of operation most often used were academic solicitation and attempted acquisition of technology; and the most often targeted technologies were electronics and information systems.
Europe and Eurasia
The collector affiliation most often identified was commercial; the methods of operation most often used were attempted acquisition of technology and requests for information; and the most often targeted technologies were lasers, optics and sensors.
South and Central Asia
The collector affiliations most often identified were government affiliated and commercial; the methods of operation most often used were attempted acquisition of technology and academic solicitation; and the most often targeted technologies were electronics and lasers, optics and sensors.
In summary, no country or area of the world is above collecting or attempting to collect important information from U.S. companies. I must note, along with DSS, that this report is only as good as the input, namely reports from industry of suspicious or direct attempts by unknown or unauthorized sources to obtain information. It takes active efforts from all involved parties, Government and industry, to thwart these efforts and report such efforts to appropriate agencies. The report is available online at http://www.dss.mil/isp/count_intell/index.html.