Förderverein Informationstechnik und Gesellschaft

CIRA Newsletter, Volume XXIII, Number 4, Winter 1998/1999

28 February 1999. Thanks to Anonymous. Source: Hardcopy CIRA Newsletter, Volume XXIII, Number 4, Winter 1998/1999. Published by Central Intelligence Retirees' Association, Box 1150, Ft. Myer, Virginia 22211.

Jump to encryption remarks.

Address at the CIRA Luncheon 5 October 1998

CIRA President Maurice Sovern introduced guest speaker John Millis, Staff Director of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. Millis agreed to speak in place of HPSCI Chairman Porter Goss (R, Florida), who was detained by a family emergency. Millis is a former operations officer who spent about 12 years in the Agency, primarily in the NE Division. After serving on the staff of the Deputy Director of NSA, he joined HPSCI in 1993, becoming Staff Director in 1997. Noting that Millis had served "over the ten-year mark," Sovern said in introduction, "I think I have persuaded him to join CIRA... so his lunch today is not free."


Well, I guess the good news is that since Congressman Goss is not here, Mo has said he is giving you each personally a 20% rebate on today's cost.


The media of telecommunications is no longer SIGINT-friendly. It used to be. When you were doing RF signals, anybody within range of that RF signal could receive it just as clearly as the intended recipient. Well, we moved from that to microwaves, and people figured out a great way to harness that as well. Well, now we're moving to media that are very difficult to get to. Compounding this is encryption, which is about to take off no matter what we do. This is a huge policy issue that I know some of you have followed fairly closely. No matter what we do, encryption is here and it's going to grow very rapidly. That is bad news for SIGINT, so it is going to take a huge amount of money invested in new technologies to get access and to be able to break out the information that we still need to get from SIGINT. That money is not being invested at present. NSA continues to do what they can do, but they need to be thinking about five years from now and trying to invest in those new technologies.