Record-breaking numbers with over 250 in attendance
BOSTON – The Counter-Proliferation Working Group (CPWG), chaired by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts, today hosted more than 250 individuals at the fifth annual conference on U.S. export controls and espionage at Boston University. Representatives from U.S. corporations, including defense contractors, and academic institutions were in attendance.
During the conference, participants were provided information on how to comply with their export obligations and protect critical technology. Also discussed was the growing national security and economic threats posed by cyberattacks and procurement efforts by foreign nationals and foreign governments, primarily the People’s Republic of China and Iran, to illegally obtain export restricted U.S. military and dual-use technology as well as intellectual property and proprietary information of U.S. companies.
The conference was organized and moderated by Assistant U.S. Attorney and Export Case Coordinator B. Stephanie Siegmann of the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Opening remarks were provided by United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz and Gloria Waters, Vice President and Associate Provost for Research at Boston University.
During her remarks, United States Attorney Ortiz said, “Preventing our adversaries from obtaining U.S. export restricted technology is one of our highest priorities. It is clear, however, that the government cannot guard our nation from this immense threat alone; we need the help of our business and academic partners to safeguard sensitive U.S. technology.”
Presentations were provided by representatives of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Department of Justice’s National Security Division, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Homeland Security Investigations, and Defense Security Service. Kevin J. Wolf, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Administration, attended the conference and spoke on the changes to U.S. export laws resulting from the recent export reform initiative. Lastly, export compliance officers from Harvard Medical School, Boston University, and iRobot spoke on a panel on export compliance issues.
The Massachusetts CPWG, chaired by AUSA Stephanie Siegmann of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, was created in December 2007 to help combat illegal exports of U.S. military parts and sensitive technology. The CPWG consists of representatives of law enforcement and intelligence agencies, including the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Homeland Security Investigations, Department of Commerce's Office of Export Enforcement, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Defense Criminal Investigative Service, Defense Security Service, Naval Criminal Investigative Service, Air Force Office of Special Investigations, Army, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Missile Defense Agency, and Defense Intelligence Agency. The CPWG shares information regarding current threats and suspicious activities regarding the transfer of sensitive U.S. technology through illegal means and coordinates investigations.