What is Interdiction?

Introduction

Interdiction is a military term for the act of delaying, disrupting, or destroying enemy forces or supplies en route to the battle area.

A distinction is often made between strategic and tactical interdiction. The former refers to operations whose effects are broad and long-term; tactical operations are designed to affect events rapidly and in a localised area.

Espionage

United States

The term interdiction is also used by the NSA when an electronics shipment is secretly intercepted by an intelligence agency (domestic or foreign) for the purpose of implanting bugs before they reach their destination. According to Der Spiegel, the NSA’s TAO group is able to divert shipping deliveries to its own “secret workshops” in a method called interdiction, where agents load malware onto the electronics or install malicious hardware that can give US intelligence agencies remote access. The report also indicates that the NSA, in collaboration with the CIA and FBI, routinely and secretly intercepts shipping deliveries for laptops or other computer accessories, such as a computer monitor or keyboard cables with hidden wireless transmitters bugs built-in for eavesdropping on video and keylogging.

China

In July 2014 it was reported that handheld shipping image scanners manufactured in China were found with pre-installed, weaponised malware which was capable of exfiltrating CRM data and financial data. These scanners are of the type used by many United States retailers and warehouses, as well as delivery services such as United Parcel Service and FedEx. The scanned data was copied and sent out to an established comprehensive command and control connection (CnC) to a Chinese botnet that was terminated at the Shandong Lanxiang Vocational School located in China.

Types

In different theatres of conflict:

Refer to Interdiction Assault Ship, proposed vessel specially made for the role.

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