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Technical Surveillance Counter Measures

What do you do before conducting a TSCM sweep?

Before we conduct a TSCM sweep, we have a meeting offsite with the Client. The purpose of this meeting is to establish the following:

The level of threat
This level of threat will vary from LOW (off-the-shelf consumer spy equipment) to HIGH (custom-developed sophisticated kit that is not commercially available).

Building history
It is important to understand the history of a building or the target area in order to consider the possibility of recording devices having been planted during construction or forgotten by previous tenants.

Ease of access
Information is required about who has access to the sensitive areas of the facility; and how target areas are secured from the illicit placement of new devices.

Based on the above information, the equipment and personnel required for the TSCM sweep will be selected and sent to your premises.

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When do you conduct a TSCM sweep?

For operational security reasons, the sweep should be conducted without alerting suspicion.  Whilst it is preferable to conduct a sweep outside of normal business hours, such as evenings or weekends, other operational considerations must be addressed.

For example, by setting up a fictitious but plausible meeting during business hours, an eavesdropper could be prompted to activate a range of devices which can then be detected by the sweep team.

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Do you conduct a physical search of the target area?

We believe that a physical search is the root of all counter-surveillance work and overlaps other technical procedures that are used.

Our physical search is conducted in a thorough manner and a close visual inspection is undertaken, especially of cabling, file boxes, computer equipment, smoke detectors, wall clocks and desk lamps.  In this way, a physical search will uncover wired microphones, passive resonators, inactive remote controlled transmitters and any dormant surveillance devices.

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What do you do when you detect an electronic surveillance device?

Sometimes, our clients become angry when devices are found and want to rip them from the walls or concealed conduits.

Rather than destroying the surveillance units, we often recommend that the devices should be left in place and that an operation of control leakage be taken.  By replacing the power source with a weaker one, and positioning covert cameras to monitor access and egress to the target area, you can often discover the identity of individuals involved in placing and servicing surveillance devices.

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