China Takes Steps Against Imagery Reconnaissance

08.25.08 | 1 min read | Text by Steven Aftergood

Chinese military authorities are paying increased attention to foreign satellite reconnaissance of Chinese forces and operations, and are pursuing countermeasures such as camouflage and deception to conceal sensitive material and activities, according to a newly-disclosed analysis (pdf) performed in 2007 by the DNI Open Source Center.

“A variety of Chinese open source reporting suggests that China is developing an increasingly sophisticated understanding of US imagery collection capabilities and is steadily taking steps to evade both Western intelligence and commercial satellite and aerial reconnaissance,” the OSC report stated.

“PRC domestic and military media clearly indicate that China is well aware of US intelligence’s imagery satellite reconnaissance activities, including some key specifications. Much of the knowledge could come from observation of US military operations or from authorized and unauthorized disclosure in US media,” the report said.

Like most other OSC analytical products, the report has not been approved for public release. But a copy was obtained by Secrecy News. See “China: PLA Training Emphasizes Countermeasures Against Imagery Reconnaissance,” Open Source Center, July 31, 2007.