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The Diplomatic Security Service manages/administers the Department of State’s Insider Threat program to protect the department, its people, property, and information from threats within the department.

The goal of the Insider Threat Program is to:

  • Prevent the unauthorized disclosure of sensitive and classified material
  • Eliminate workplace violence
  • Identify employees on the critical path

The program accomplishes their goal through a three-tiered approach:

  • Deter: Discourage employees from becoming insider threats through training, outreach and education
  • Detect: Determine employees who pose a risk to the Department, its people, facilities, information, or reputation
  • Mitigate: Limit the risks to the security of the Department through administrative, investigative and other responses

Insider threats may include:

  • National Security Crimes: Terrorism, economic espionage, export controls and sanctions, or cyber threats
  • Espionage: Sharing national security information without authorization to foreign entity
  • Unauthorized Disclosure: Sharing or disclosing information without authorization
  • Acts of Violence: Aggression or violent act towards self or others

Potential indicators of an insider threat may include:

  • Copying or taking proprietary, sensitive or classified material home, without need or authorization.
  • Inappropriately seeking proprietary or classified information on subjects not related to their work duties.
  • Remotely accessing the computer network or working without authorization at odd times.
  • Disregarding computer policies on installing software or hardware, accessing restricted websites, conducting unauthorized searches, or downloading confidential information.
  • Not reporting foreign contacts or unreported/frequent overseas travel.
  • Having unexplained affluence or buying things that they cannot afford.
  • Overwhelmed by life crises or career disappointments.
  • Showing unusual interest in the others’ personal lives, asking inappropriate questions regarding finances or relationships.
  • Showing concern they are being investigated; attempting to detect.

Click the images below to view Insider Threat training material.





U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future