Title: NSA and GCHQ Team Up to Tackle HF (repost)

Release Date: 2017-04-24

Document Date: 2004-08-30

Description: (Repost) After realizing that their technologies for collecting high frequency signals were obsolete, the NSA and GCHQ established the Joint Strategic Off-Air Programme, which jointly manages all HF/VHF/UHF collection as well as updates to legacy systems.

Document: DYNAMIC PAGE -- HIGHEST POSSIBLE CLASSIFICATION IS
TOP SECRET // SI / TK // REL TO USA AUS CAN GBR NZL

(C) NSA and GCHQ Team Up to Tackle HF (repost)
FROM:
Deputy Chief, RFO/Corporate HF Services (S3311)
Run Date: 08/30/2004

(S//SI) Exploitation of HF (High Frequency) signals is one of the oldest forms of SIGINT. HF
technology continues to evolve with new protocols, features, and capabilities that make it an
attractive and inexpensive option for some of NSA's highest priority targets. The current HF
mission is based around legacy systems deployed in the 1980s and 1990s that are unable to
collect advanced HF technologies and long overdue for replacement. NSA is now in the midst of
revitalizing the ability to provide a responsive, agile sustained collection capability against HF.
(C) In late 2001 and 2002, NSA looked to our partners and industry to assess what they were
doing in this area and to take advantage of the current state of the art. It quickly became clear
that GCHQ* had solid business practices and a technology roadmap based around their emerging
GLAIVE HF/VHF/UHF collection architecture that would meet most of our needs. Discussions with
GCHQ led to the establishment of the Joint Strategic Off-Air (JSOA) Programme .
(C) Within this Joint Programme, GCHQ and NSA will jointly manage the mission, technology
development and deployment of HF/VHF/UHF collection capabilities to meet the intelligence
requirements of both nations. The Joint Programme Executive Board, located at GCHQ, is made
up of three GCHQ leaders and three NSA counterparts. Corporate HF Services at NSA is an
integral part of the JP, primarily providing project management and development services as the
JP meets US intelligence needs.
(S//SI) The Joint Programme is achieving immediate results while working towards the long
term goals of replacing all of the legacy systems by 2009. In early 2003, a GLAIVE system was
deployed to Kuwait to monitor Iraqi communications prior to Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF).
Then in December 2003, the Joint Programme deployed a GLAIVE system to Balad, Iraq to
collect local insurgents as well as provide a significant, strategically located SIGINT capability in
the Middle East. This system was also utilized for COMSEC monitoring - see the previous SID
today article . As of this week, operators in the Meade Operations Center are able to tune
receivers at RAF Digby in the UK. In early August, workstations will be installed at GRSOC to
give operators' access to existing UK and US front-ends worldwide.
(U//FOUO) The Joint Programme is breaking new ground for the UKUSA agreement -- the two
countries jointly manage the systems that are deployed in response to US and UK requirements,
and each will have access to the others' front-end resources. Look for a future SID today article
for an overview of GLAIVE and its current and future capabilities.
(U) This article first appeared on July 14, 2004.
* (U) Notes:
GCHQ = Government Communications Headquarters, the UK's SIGINT organization.

"(U//FOUO) SIDtoday articles may not be republished or reposted outside NSANet
without the consent of S0121 (DL sid_comms)."

DYNAMIC PAGE -- HIGHEST POSSIBLE CLASSIFICATION IS
TOP SECRET // SI / TK // REL TO USA AUS CAN GBR NZL

DERIVED FROM: 1-52, DATED 08 JAN 2007 DECLASSIFY ON: 20320108

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