National Clandestine Service - Clandestine Collection of HUMINT

Clandestine Collection of HUMINT

Legal Authorities

A number of statutes, executive orders, and directives assign the task of conducting HUMINT operations to the CIA:

1) By federal statute, the CIA's Director is tasked with the collection of intelligence through human sources and by other appropriate means.

2) Executive Order 12333 states that:

The Director of the Central Intelligence Agency shall coordinate the clandestine collection of foreign intelligence collected through human sources such as "moles" or other human-enabled means and counterintelligence activities outside the United States.

3) National Security Council Intelligence Directive No. 5 (NSCID 5) provides that:

The Director of Central Intelligence shall conduct all organized Federal espionage operations outside the United States and its possessions for the collection of foreign intelligence information required to meet the needs of all Departments and Agencies concerned, in connection with the national security, except for certain agreed activities by other Departments and Agencies.

4) Intelligence Community Directive Number 340 designates the CIA as the National HUMINT Manager.

Tradecraft

Techniques for the clandestine collection of HUMINT are collectively known as tradecraft. A discussion of many of these techniques can be found at Clandestine HUMINT operational techniques.

Very few statutes and publicly available regulations deal specifically with clandestine HUMINT techniques. One such statute forbids the use of journalists as agents unless the President makes the written determination to waive this restriction based on the "overriding national security interest of the United States.". In the Intelligence Authorization Act for the Fiscal Year 2002, Congress instructed the CIA's Director to rescind what Congress viewed as overly restrictive guidelines regarding the recruitment of foreign assets who had a record of human rights violations.

Camp Peary (also referred to as "The Farm"), near Williamsburg, Virginia, is purportedly a CIA training facility for clandestine operatives.

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