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DISP goes international.

The world is changing before our eyes. It will never be the same. What it will be like once the flood of change has run its course is uncertain.

American industry has been anticipating change and learning new ways of doing business in many parts of the world, including Western Europe. With the advent of a unified European Economic Community in 1992, many old rules, including some outdated security procedures, will no longer be applicable.

Once a rarity, multinational defense programs are now a common means of procuring defense systems for many US and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) allies. Similar trends are emerging for many of America's Asian allies. These changes call for innovation and flexibility in US government and industry functions, including the international operations of the Defense Industrial Security Program.

Recent events in Eastern Europe present even greater challenges. On one hand, significant markets previously cut off from many segments of American industry are now within reach. On the other hand, while the threat of armed conflict in Europe is at the lowest level since World War 11, the security threat to US technology and sensitive information is as great as ever. US contractors that want to react quickly to international changes have learned to adapt just about every aspect of their operations, industrial security included.

Challenges facing cleared industry working internationally include

* new security rules for certain multinational classified programs,

* additional security implications of assigning cleared employees to multinational consortiums,

* future prospects for automated transmission of international visit requests,

* more frequent contact between cleared employees and representatives or nationals of designated countries, and

* use of STU-III (secure telephone unit-third generation) technology to tie overseas duty stations to secure communication networks.

To assist cleared US defense contractors in their overseas endeavors, the Defense Investigative Service DIS) maintains the Office of Industrial Security International (OISI) at two locations, one in Europe and the other in the Far East. OISI-Europe is based in Brussels, Belgium, with a field office in Mannheim, West Germany. Yokohama, Japan, serves as the base for OISI-FAR East, with a field office in Seoul, Korea.

OISI'S primary responsibility is to advise and assist cleared US contractors and personnel in their overseas operations. This responsibility encompasses contractor duty stations working on the following:

n classified contracts at US Army and Navy installations

n marketing and liaison activities

n classified Foreign Military Sales programs in those operations

* classified foreign contracts

* classified codevelopment or coproduction programs

* other joint classified programs with allied countries that require a US clearance

OISI recognizes that overseas contractor duty stations are thousands of miles away from their home offices and thus not in ready reach of their facility security officers. Therefore, OISI attempts to visit as many duty stations as possible each year to provide on-site assistance. It also responds to the myriad of inquiries received each day from cleared personnel at more than 1,500 overseas duty stations.

OISI also serves as a central collection point for clearance records on contractor personnel. It uses these records to process visit requests to US government, foreign government, and NATO projects. Thus, contractors with cleared overseas personnel have an additional channel besides the Defense Industrial Security Clearance Office for processing visit requests.

OISI also functions as a repository for classified materials used by cleared personnel assigned overseas. In addition, it helps establish government-to-government transmission channels for the United States, foreign government and NATO.

Last but not least, OISI emphasizes its responsibility to provide security education and awareness to cleared contractor personnel assigned overseas. In addition to refresher and specialized briefings, OISI periodically sponsors a security awareness assessment program. The sessions include presentations from representatives of security and counterintelligence committees, the FBI, the Defense Intelligence Agency, and the National Security Agency. Sessions provide contractor personnel with the latest information on hostile intelligence threats as well as steps they should take to help mitigate these threats.

DIS recognizes that the needs of cleared contractors overseas will increase and become more complex in the 1990s. It is striving to do everything possible to satisfy those demands and meet the challenges of the next decade.
COPYRIGHT 1990 American Society for Industrial Security
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1990 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Defense Industrial Security Program
Author:Schwalls, Robert G.
Publication:Security Management
Date:May 1, 1990
Words:686
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