The CIA has known as on its frontline spies to step up their operational safety around the globe after dozens of informants have been arrested, killed or in any other case compromised lately, the New York Times reported Tuesday.
A cable despatched final week from prime US counterintelligence officers to each company station and base included the precise variety of human sources arrested or executed by rival companies — a element that’s usually a carefully guarded secret, the Times reported.
The doc lays a number of points on the ft of case officers liable for recruiting new informants — together with poor tradecraft, underestimating the counterintelligence prowess of overseas businesses, and specializing in recruitment with out paying correct consideration to potential dangers. It goes on to remind officers to deal with these points along with bringing new sources into the fold.
In current years, stories have indicated that China has turn out to be significantly adept at monitoring down and taking out US spy networks. The Times reported in 2017 that in a single such case, no less than 12 suspected informants had been executed by Beijing and a number of other extra had been imprisoned.
However, Tuesday’s report means that different US adversaries — together with Russia, Iran and Pakistan — have equally elevated their capabilities, in some instances turning CIA sources into double brokers. The cable despatched final week didn’t give a lot of what number of informants had been compromised on this method.
Further hampering the CIA’s efforts, based on the Times, was a breach of the categorized communications system that led to the publicity of networks in China and Iran. In addition, some officers imagine treasonous US intelligence officers handed over info that led to the arrests and deaths of sources.
In November 2019, for instance, former CIA case agent Jerry Chun Shing Lee was sentenced to 19 years in jail after he pleaded responsible to conspiracy to commit espionage. Prosecutors say Chinese intelligence officers gave Lee greater than $840,000 over a three-year interval starting in 2010 to disclose the names of human sources. Lee’s protection staff denied that declare.
Months earlier, Monica Witt, a former Air Force intelligence officer, was indicted on fees of delivering nationwide protection info to the federal government of Iran and conspiracy. Prosecutors mentioned she turned over categorized details about US intelligence officers after defecting to Iran in 2013.