US senate report warns spy agencies are falling behind
The infamous National Counterintelligence and Security Center requires a clear role and adequate resources, as per the Senate Intelligence Committee report.
A US senate report published on Tuesday revealed that the United States spy agencies are ill-equipped to deal with an increasing number of adversaries attempting to steal vital secrets from institutions and businesses across American society.
US counterintelligence efforts have not kept up with espionage, hacking, and disinformation threats from major powers most notably China, transnational criminal organizations, as well as ideologically motivated groups, as per the bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee report.
In search of secret or sensitive data, these various groups target not only US national security agencies, but also other government departments, the private sector, and academia.
The partially redacted report focuses on the little-known National Counterintelligence and Security Center, whose mission is to lead counterintelligence—the protection of US secrets from foreign adversaries—across the US government.
The center lacks adequate funding, authority, and a clear mission, according to the Senate report.
The “threat landscape facing the country today is wide-ranging and sophisticated,” it stated.
The center “lacks a clear mission as well as sufficient and well-defined authorities and resources to effectively confront this landscape,” it said.
It lacks the authority to mandate counterintelligence practices across spy agencies, let alone private-sector firms facing hacking or other threats and is funded by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, of which it is a component.
According to the report, neither Congress nor the ODNI has requested budget increases for the center.
“The impact of all these challenges is clear: Foreign adversaries compromise U.S. assets across the globe, acquire billions of dollars a year in U.S. research and technology, jeopardize the competitiveness of U.S. companies and the economic dominance of the United States, steal sensitive [personal information] on U.S. [government] employees and U.S. citizens, and interfere in domestic affairs,” it says.
Read more: US Air Force working with oldest equipment in its history: Official