Are they watching us?

By Joseph Normandin
Posted by John McHale

Before I left for the Paris Air Show earlier this month a friend in the industry said I should expect all my phone calls -- cellular or other -- to be listened to and expect all my emails to be read.

I said are you serious? Who wants to know what an innocent trade pub editor has to say to his office?

Apparently this gentleman instructs all his employees before leaving the country to be on their guard about revealing information on military technology that could be of value to foreign governments. Electronic surveillance is everywhere.

Aside from what a government might pick up, companies must also be sensitive to what their own country's watchdogs are looking for. The U.S. State Department is very strict about what can and can't be said overseas regarding U.S. military technology. These rules fall under the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) .

Many exhibitors at the Paris Air Show were touting their import/export compliance rules to their staff at the event. FLIR even made up a brochure to give to all their employees outlining the rules for when they were in Paris.

The State Department "was impressed with how organized we were," said FLIR’s vice president of marketing, David Strong, during the show.

It's a paranoid time and U.S. companies and government agencies must be on their guard about what they say or write about their technology.

Journalists too...

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The Mil & Aero Bloggers

John Keller is editor-in-chief of Military & Aerospace Electronics magazine, which provides extensive coverage and analysis of enabling electronic and optoelectronic technologies in military, space, and commercial aviation applications. A member of the Military & Aerospace Electronics staff since the magazine's founding in 1989, Mr. Keller took over as chief editor in 1995.

Ernesto Burden is the publisher of PennWell’s Aerospace & Defense Media Group, including Military & Aerospace Electronics, Avionics Intelligence and Avionics Europe.  He’s a father of four, a runner, and an avid digital media enthusiast with a deep background in the intersection of media publishing, digital technology, and social media. He can be reached at ernestob@pennwell.com and on Twitter @aero_ernesto.

Courtney E. Howard, as executive editor, enjoys writing about all things electronics and avionics in PennWell’s burgeoning Aerospace and Defense Group, which encompasses Military & Aerospace Electronics, Avionics Intelligence, the Avionics Europe conference, and much more. She’s also a self-proclaimed social-media maven, mil-aero nerd, and avid avionics geek. Connect with Courtney at Courtney@Pennwell.com, @coho on Twitter, and on LinkedIn.

Mil & Aero Magazine

January 2014
Volume 25, Issue 1
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