Cryptographic Devices and "Scramblers"Tutorial on Real World Cryptographic Devices and Scrambling Equipment
TSCM Product Catalog "Bug and Wiretap Detectors"Tutorial on Basic Sweep Gear Start Here
Briefcase Bug Detection SystemsCPM-700 Counter Surveillance Probe and Monitor
Used Equipment IndexClick Here For the Used Equipment Index
All TSCM equipment listed here is Dual-use Munitions List Items (MLI), or Commerce Controlled List Items (CCLI). MLI/CCLI items are highly controlled by the U. S. Government, and cannot be transferred, exported, sold, or given, to a foreign country, a non-U. S. Citizen or National, or a non-permanent U. S. Citizen, without a valid State and/or Commerce Department Export authorization that is issued in advance, and which actually issues forth from the Department of Defense and the U.S. Intelligence Community. Some equipment (or certain end users) even requires a formal authorization by the President of the United States for the transaction, and not even the DOS, DHS, DOC, DOD, DIA, or CIA can override this requirement.
It is the responsibility of the manufacture and of the end-user or purchaser, to comply with applicable requirements, and to obtain all necessary authorizations, licenses, or approvals to facilitate export, transport, possession, or acquisition. The use, disposition, export, import, or re-export of these items are subject to the provisions of law referencing written End-User Certification. Including, but not limited to, the Arms Export Control Act (22 USC 2751 et seq); Export Administration Act 1979 (50 USC App. 2041 et seq); as contained under Executive Order 12924; International Traffic in Arms Regulations (22 CFR 120 et seq); Export Administration Regulations (15 CFR 730 et seq); Foreign Assets Control Regulations (31 CFR 500 et seq); and the Espionage Act (18 USC 793 et seq), the Wassenaar Arrangement, and other treaties and laws. Even providing TSCM training, to someone who is not a U.S. Citizen requires also requires State Department approvals.
All TSCM, TEMPEST, SIGINT, and related equipment without exception is all covered by "The United States Munitions List" under ITAR 121.1, Category XI(b) as Military and Space Electronics, as "electronic systems or equipment designed or modified to counteract electronic surveillance or monitoring."
Most TSCM equipment is considered a Tier 1 defense article, but some more simplistic devices, tools, or systems may qualify only as Tier 2 devices on the USML or "Munitions List". Further, most TSCM equipment also qualifies as ECCN 5A001.e and 5A001 equipment and is subject to the export licensing authority of the Department of State, Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (22 CFR part 121).
By international treaty, most nations have laws that parallel these U.S. Laws (as arms controls), so that it is extremely difficult and costly to legitimately get this equipment across any borders of any country, and if you get caught with it, and you can not prove that you obtained in it very specific legitimate ways you could be in for a very awkward situation, but perhaps even not right away, but eventually.
This equipment, and this style of equipment and function of equipment was all initially designed by the U.S. Military, for purposes of military functions, and various companies evolved their products out of these military originated products, and then sold these new products back to the military which formed a closed loop that reinforced that these systems are still legally considered military arms.
Even if you are a U.S. Citizen and the equipment actually belongs to you and you are merely importing and importing it for your own use, you risk a forfeiture and seizure of all of your equipment that you are traveling with unless your paperwork is spot-on perfect.
Companies that manufacture TSCM and related equipment usually can not make a profit merely selling the equipment legitimately in their own country and they will often play games about the exportability of the gear, or will often falsify export paperwork in order to make an illegal sale (do not be taken for a fool). Generally, you should not trust what the company who actually makes the gear tells you, but instead seek the counsel of someone who actually works with a wide range of equipment across a range of companies and nations who can actually explain it in an unbiased way, these gurus, grey beards, engineers, and wizards can save you vast problems.
Better yet, go to your attorney, have then do some research, and then have THEM contact an expert in TSCM and assist them in gaining an in-depth understanding of the issues, then have them write inquiry letters to government agencies where the function and origin of the equipment is explained and ask for an official ruling from the government, in which your attorney then crafts into a legal memorandum. What the attorney eventually puts into their well researched memorandum will often dramatically be different then what the manufacture of the equipment will tell you.
As any legitimate approval for a transaction takes many weeks, and often months it is important to plan for notable delays, and not to wait until the very last minute to obtain needed gear. It is wisest for the actual end user to contact the U.S. Embassy in the country where the goods will ultimately be used, go through the interview and visitations process with them, initiate the end user approval process, and get approvals for the transaction six, eight, or even ten months in advance of the anticipated purchase from a cold-start. These pre-approvals are vital as they can usually reduce this approval time to less than 45 days (unless the customer is playing games). The custom in the industry is that once payment is made for the goods, the purchaser has only 90 days to perfect and consummate the shipment, so get as much pre-order approvals completed as possible (many companies have a deposit forfeiture policy if you do not get your export approval within 90 days, or double the regular approval cycle for ITAR 121.1 good for pre-approved entities).
Please call us if you have any questions, but generally, we will deal only with the actual end-user of the equipment, and will not deal with intermediaries, middle-men, or brokers. We always play it straight, we will not engage in export fraud, and we will have nothing to do with illegal arms shipments or trafficking. If you want to talk with a well recognized expert on these kinds of munitions and equipment, how to handle legitimate transaction, and avoid problems, then contact us, we can save you a lot of hassles.
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Granite Island Group
127 Eastern Avenue #291
Gloucester, MA 01930
Telephone: (978) 546-3803 / Fax: (978) 546-9467
International Callers: 001-978-546-3803 / Fax: 001-978-546-9467