Security awareness - Understanding foreign disclosure
October 15, 2009
As the Army continues to interact with foreign governments, the CECOM Life Cycle Management Command's security office would like to remind employees of the foreign disclosure guidelines to ensure that sensitive information goes through the appropriate channels prior to its release.
According to Army Regulation 380-10, foreign disclosure is the legal transfer of classified or controlled unclassified military information through approved channels to an authorized representative of a foreign government. In addition to classified and controlled unclassified documents, any information pertaining to emerging, developing or existing technologies should also be protected.
There are eight distinct categories of Classified Military information outlined in the National Disclosure Policy.
Category 1: Organization, Training, and Employment of Forces
Category 2: Military Material and Munitions
Category 3: Applied Research and Development Information
Category 4: Production Information
Category 5: Combined Military Operation, Planning and Readiness
Category 6: U.S. Order of Battle Information
Category 7: North American Defense
Category 8: Military Intelligence
A foreign disclosure officer categorizes and is the approval authority for the release of military information to foreign government representatives. The basic criteria for foreign disclosure includes: national interest, purpose, government to government, protection, access, third party and compromise.
Foreign access to information must be provided in the best interests of the United States and meet foreign policy or a military objective. Information must only be used for its intended purpose and be disclosed through official channels approved by both governments. The foreign entity must provide security protection that is equal to the security of the United States, including granting access to individuals with a security clearance and need-to-know status.
"Foreign disclosure affects each employee," said CECOM LCMC Foreign Disclosure officer Georgianne Sheppard-Mbafor. "Although not all foreign nationals visit to collect sensitive information, the key is to be aware and practice good operational security procedures."
There are several techniques that have been confirmed by counterintelligence professionals as common methods used by foreign collectors during visits (DSS PA release #01-05-18-04).
Peppering: Several visitors ask the same question in different ways or one visitor asks the same question to multiple U.S. contractor employees.
Wandering visitor: The visitor uses the distraction provided by a large delegation to slip away, out of the control of the escort.
Divide and conquer: The foreign visitors take the U.S. team members into different areas to discuss issues, thus, relieving the U.S. person of his safety net of being assisted in answering questions or eliminating oversight of what he releases.
Last minute visitor switching: A tool that is sometimes used to add a collector to the group without leaving enough time for a background check to be performed on the new visitor.
Bait and switch: The delegation says they are coming to discuss business that is acceptable for discussion, but after they arrive their agenda switches to different questions and discussions.
The distraught visitor: When the visitor does not have questions answered he/she has a temper tantrum or acts as though they are insulted. They hope the U.S. person will want to avoid a scene and answer the questions.
For more information, contact Sheppard-Mbafor, 410-436-4978.