http://www.ncix.gov/pubs/news/2001/sep01.html#99 September 2001 A major US aerospace corporation had a booth at the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO) Technology Conference and Exhibit on July 23-26, 2001 at Williamsburg, Virginia, as part of the technical exhibits. Part of the aerospace marketer's task at the conference was to staff the booth when the exhibits were open. Attendees at the conference were required to have a Secret level clearance. The unclassified exhibits were open daily from 0930-1600 hours and from 1730-1900 hours, but included material that was SBU (sensitive but unclassified). Typically, attendance was low in the exhibits area while technical papers were being presented at the conference. On Tuesday, July 24, around 1030, a company employee who was manning the aerospace corporation booth noticed an oriental male approaching the booth from the area of an adjacent booth at the rear of the hall. The man was displaying neither a badge-the photo ID that indicated the required secret clearance/ conference attendance- nor the AIAA exhibitor badge that permitted other personnel to enter the exhibit hall. The man proceeded to collect a copy of each of the aerospace corporation's brochures without addressing the company employee. After greeting him, the company employee asked what organization he was with and whether he had a badge. The man replied that he was not attending the conference but was a journalist covering the conference. The employee then asked the man if he had an invitation to be in the exhibit hall, as AIAA had provided written invitations for exhibitors to give their customers. The man replied that he had no invitation but that he often attends AIAA and other organizations' technical exhibits. The company employee then asked the man which publication he represented, and, after several nonresponsive answers, he said he was with the Beijing Daily News. At this point, the aerospace corporation's representative took all the documents the man was carrying and asked him to follow him to the security stand outside the exhibit hall. Although he complied, the man obviously was not very happy. At the security booth, the company employee explained the situation to the BMDO personnel, and they carried on a brief dialog with the man. Since this exhibit was not open to the general public, the aerospace corporation's employee told the BMDO reps that he objected to having persons in the exhibit hall who were not attending the conference nor invited by one of the exhibitors. Only after being questioned by BMDO security did the "visitor" show what appeared to be a press credential. After listening to his complaints about being removed from the exhibits, the BMDO security personnel directed the man to the AIAA booth across the lobby. The man never reappeared at the event, either that day or the next. In a subsequent discussion with the BMDO security personnel that afternoon, they thanked the company employee for his actions. They said they had placed personnel at the rear entrance of the exhibit hall leading from the kitchen/service area (which was evidently not monitored previously) to prevent anyone from entering through that route. Upon the company employee's return to his company, he notified his security office about the incident. Subsequently, the information was passed to both Defense Security Service Counterintelligence and the FBI. The 902nd Military Intelligence Group then became involved, and the agencies followed through with an investigation. An investigation revealed that the oriental visitor was in fact a Chinese national who is known to target US technical information. NCIX Comment: This article was received after the National Counterintelligence Executive's quarterly CI News and Developments newsletter published and placed on the NCIX unclassified Web site in September 2001. This article clearly demonstrates the responsibilities and actions of an employee who is aware of counterintelligence issues thwarting overt collection. We are grateful for being allowed to publish this article for our readers' information, and we solicit similar types of articles and information demonstrating the success of a strong counterintelligence posture and awareness. - ISN is currently hosted by Attrition.org To unsubscribe email majordomoat_private with 'unsubscribe isn' in the BODY of the mail.
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