TUCoPS :: Cyber Law :: 5espion.txt

Espionage Awareness Programs

                    ESPIONAGE AWARENESS PROGRAMS                     


                       Freddie L. Capps, Jr.
                           Special Agent
                    FBI National DECA Coordinator 
                   Intelligence Division Assignment
                         FBI Headquarters 
                         Washington, D.C.   
     On a Saturday morning in January 1980, while on patrol,
Cpl. Thomas E. Hutchins, a Maryland State trooper, noticed a car
with diplomatic tags traveling slowly on a major highway.  The
trooper also observed that the driver of the car was constantly
checking his rearview mirror as he drove.  The actions of the
driver, combined with the speed of the vehicle, the early hour,
and the diplomatic tags, aroused his suspicions enough that he
ran a check of the car's registration.  It was registered to a
Soviet, Ivan Ivanovich Odintsov.  The trooper then asked himself
what could a Soviet diplomat be doing at 6:00 a.m. on a cold
Saturday morning?  Now, more suspicious than ever, Corporal
Hutchins continued to follow the diplomat's car.

     The diplomat, noticing the patrol vehicle, tried to evade
the trooper.  Then, he attempted several countersurveillance
techniques to determine if he was still being followed.  Losing
his composure, the diplomat accelerated to more than 60 m.p.h.
and ran a stop sign.  This was when Corporal Hutchins decided to
pull him over.

     As he approached the stopped vehicle, Corporal Hutchins
noticed that the Soviet diplomat appeared frightened and
nervous.  When asked to identify himself, Odintsov stated he was
a Soviet diplomat and produced a diplomatic passport and a
District of Columbia driver's license.  Also, with no prompting,
he told the officer that he was going fishing.

     Corporal Hutchins, seeing no fishing gear in the car and
knowing that there was no place to fish in the area, asked his
dispatcher to contact the U.S. State Department to advise them
of the stop and seek its guidance. A short time later, the
dispatcher informed the trooper that no one was available at the
State Department at that hour. Concerned about the proximity of
the Soviet to Andrews Air Force Base and the Naval
Communications Station, which were both less than 5 miles away,
but running out of alternatives, he decided to issue the Soviet
a warning citation and allowed him to depart.  However, before
the end of his patrol, the trooper did notify the Security
Police at the airbase of the Soviet's presence in the area.

     Unknown to Corporal Hutchins, the Soviet was a known KGB
intelligence officer.  Later, in 1985, the FBI learned that
Odintsov was one of the KGB officers responsible for handling
John Walker, the most notable Soviet penetration of the U.S.
Navy in this century.  The fact that Walker was not identified
on that Saturday morning, 5 years earlier, was just bad luck.

COUNTERINTELLIGENCE MISSION                                       

     Identifying agents and activities of foreign intelligence
services in the United States is the most difficult task of
counterintelligence.  Without identification, plans cannot be
developed to penetrate and neutralize an espionage operation.
However, once the identification is made, even the most
sophisticated network can be brought down.

     To be successful in its counterintelligence mission, the
FBI depends on an informed, enlightened citizenry and local and
State law enforcement to assist in the identification process.
Public participation in the identification process has led to
the identification of past KGB activities, and it still remains
critical to current counterintelligence efforts.

     Unfortunately, however, the American public's perception of
the Soviet threat has changed considerably in recent years.  In
June 1989, public opinion polls conducted in the United States
indicated that 65% of Americans no longer consider the Soviet
Union an immediate threat. (1)  And, Stern Magazine reported
that during the summer of 1989, 50% of West Germans polled
believed they were more threatened by the United States than the
Soviet Union. (2)  Interesting facts, especially since both
polls were taken before the fall of the Berlin Wall.

     Now, incidents witnessed by American citizens that were
previously viewed as suspicious or threatening are no longer
seen in that light.  In turn, citizens report fewer of these

     Today, the uninformed might conclude that an effective
counterintelligence program is no longer necessary.  Nothing
could be further from the truth.  As Nicholas Daniloff, former
Moscow reporter for U.S. News and World Report and one-time
prisoner of the KGB, stated in a recent newspaper article,
"Despite the reforms...Soviet spying against the United States
will continue with intensity for a long time to come." (3)

     What the American public fails to realize is that the
Soviets continue to spend billions of dollars annually on
espionage and intelligence collections activities in an attempt
to close the gap with the West in microelectronics, computers,
and sophisticated weapons systems. (4)  In fact, heightened
citizen awareness and cooperation is needed just as much now as
it was in the past.


     The FBI has developed a variety of techniques and programs
to counter the activities of hostile foreign intelligence
services in the United States.  One of the most effective of
these efforts is the Development of Espionage and
Counterintelligence Awareness Program (DECA).  DECA links the
FBI's counterintelligence program to the security countermeasures
employed by defense contractors.  Under this program, FBI
resources are focused on the spy's targets--U.S. employees with
access to classified information--not on the intelligence
officer or the diplomatic establishment.

     The DECA Program operates in all 56 FBI Field Offices.  In
each office, a DECA coordinator administers the program.  The
coordinator's primary responsibility is to visit firms that have
been awarded classified contracts to update them on current
foreign intelligence threats.

     Because of the dramatic increase in the threat posed by
foreign intelligence services, the focus of the DECA Program has
been expanded to now include American firms not engaged in
classified government contracts and the public in general.
Also, with the increase in exchange programs among Soviet and
East European governments and U.S. Government agencies and local
law enforcement agencies, DECA coordinators are now providing
espionage briefings to other Federal agencies and local police

     At the beginning of 1990, the FBI appointed a national DECA
coordinator (NDC) to manage the program throughout the country.
A short time later, a national DECA advisory committee was
organized.  This committee, composed of DECA coordinators from
the larger FBI field offices, assists the NDC with the
formulation and implementation of DECA goals, training, slides,
videos, (5) and literature.


     In August 1988, as another step designed to increase
espionage awareness, the Industrial Security Awareness Council
(ISAC) was formed.  ISAC is a joint Government/private sector
working group whose membership includes the Defense
Investigative Service (DIS), the FBI, and 11 defense
contractors. (6)

     ISAC's goal is to promote security awareness in the defense
industry by focusing on the collective resources of industry and
government.  Its members share awareness resources, thereby
reducing needless duplication of efforts that occur when
companies operate alone, without coordination and cooperation.
This concept has since been expanded by DIS and the FBI to other
regions of the country and plans are in progress to make it a
national organization.


     The United States continues to have secrets that some
foreign powers seek and are willing to steal.  These secrets go
beyond the strategic military and technological information that
impact on national security.  They also include sensitive
economic information and proprietary technologies of America's
private sector.  These technologies may never be classified, but
their loss could have a negative impact on those companies who
developed them.  A loss in the private sector, if significant
enough to threaten a company's survival, could also endanger
national security.

     The successes achieved by Soviet and other foreign
intelligence services during the 1980s serve to reinforce the
fact that counterintelligence is a strategic issue that requires
a coordinated, effective national response.  Because the world
is so complex and is in a constant state of flux, the FBI must
be able to articulate clearly this evolving intelligence threat
and work with America's private sector to meet today's
counterintelligence challenges successfully.


     (1)  David Remnick, The Washington Post, June 13, 1989, p.
A 1.

     (2)  Ibid.                                                      

     (3)  Nicholas Daniloff, "Reforms In Soviet Union Only
Increase Appetites For Secrets From The West," Los Angeles
Times, August 9, 1989.

     (4)  Hughes Aircraft Company, A Counterintelligence
Awareness Primer, 1987, p. 5.

     (5)  Hughes Aircraft Company and the FBI jointly produced a
video entitled "Espionage 2000."  This 30-minute video contains
interviews of experts in the counterintelligence and security
countermeasures fields discussing important awareness issues.
It is available to any government agency or defense contractor
for use in espionage awareness programs by contacting the FBI,
the Defense Investigative Service, or the Hughes Aircraft

     (6)  The 11 defense contractors are Aerospace Corporation,
Hughes Aircraft Company, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Lockheed
Aeronautical Systems Company, Logicon, McDonnell Douglas
Corporation, Northrop Corporation, Rockwell International
Corporation, Science Applications International, Trident Data
Corporation, and TRW.

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