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US Air Force Instruction Re: Domestic Commercial Imagery and Domestic Archived Imagery

Source: Secrecy News

Instruction available at Federation of American Scientists


23 APRIL 2012


3.4. This instruction applies to non-intelligence units or staffs, such as Eagle Vision, operating systems that acquire and disseminate commercial satellite products to intelligence units and staffs. 9. Domestic Imagery. Air Force components may, at times, require newly collected or archived domestic imagery to perform certain missions. Domestic imagery is defined as any imagery collected by satellite (national or commercial) and airborne platforms that cover the land areas of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia, and the territories and possessions of the US, to a 12 nautical mile seaward limit of these land areas. 9.1. Collecting information on specific targets inside the US raises policy and legal concerns that require careful consideration, analysis and coordination with legal counsel. Therefore, Air Force components should use domestic imagery only when there is a justifiable need to do so, and then only IAW EO 12333, the National Security Act of 1947, as amended, DoD10 AFI14-104 23 April 2012 5240.1-R, and this instruction. The following generally constitute legally valid requirements for domestic imagery:

9.1.1. Natural Disasters. Locations in support of government planning for, emergency response to, or recovery from events such as tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, mudslides, fires, and other natural disasters.

9.1.2. Counterintelligence, Force Protection, and Security-related Vulnerability Assessments. Requirements in support of critical infrastructure analysis on federal or private property where consent has been obtained as appropriate.

9.1.3. Environmental Studies. Requirements in support of studies of wildlife, geologic features, or forestation, or similar scientific, agricultural, or environmental studies not related to regulatory or law enforcement actions.

9.1.4. Exercise, Training, Testing, or Navigational Purposes. Requirements for imagery coverage in support of system or satellite calibration, sensor evaluation, algorithm or analytical developments and training or weapon systems development or training.

9.2. Domestic Imagery from National Satellites. The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) is responsible for the legal review and approval of requests for the collection and dissemination of domestic imagery from national satellites. Air Force components must follow policy and procedures established in the National System for Geospatial Intelligence Manuals CS 9400.07, Domestic Imagery. Air Force components must submit a PUM each year to NGA that defines the requirements for domestic imagery, outlines its intended use, and includes a proper use statement acknowledging awareness of legal and policy restrictions regarding domestic imagery. NGA will review the PUM to ensure it constitutes a legally valid requirement for domestic imagery. Air Force components must submit a Domestic Imagery Request (DIRs) to NGA for any ad hoc domestic imagery requirements that fall outside the scope of an approved PUM.

9.3. Domestic Imagery from all DoD imagery Satellite Platforms. An approved PUM must be on file with the appropriate Combatant Command, per their procedures, or with the appropriate Air Force MAJCOM or FOA (or delegated/designated sub-component PUM authority) before airborne or tactical DoD satellite platforms can be tasked to collect domestic imagery. Note that Tactical Satellites (TacSats) are considered to be “airborne” platforms. These PUMs must be IAW the format instructions found in Attachment 4. Approval for PUM requests is hereby delegated to MAJCOM and FOA commanders. Legal review at MAJCOM/FOA level is required before approval and reviews should be filed with the approved PUM requests. In the event of an emergency or crisis where US Northern Command (USNORTHCOM) is designated as lead DoD Operational Authority, all related requests for domestic imagery from airborne or tactical DoD satellite platforms must be coordinated with USNORTHCOM to ensure compliance with proper use provisions. Air Force components must submit a PUM request through the MAJCOM to the designated approval authority for any ad hoc DIR. (see paragraph 9.6. for an exception to this paragraph).

9.4. Domestic Imagery from Commercial Satellites. Air Force intelligence components may obtain domestic commercial imagery without higher-level approval for valid mission purposes such as training or testing on federally owned and operated ranges, calibration- AFI14-104 23 April 2012 11 associated systems development activities, and domestic disaster relief operations. However, an internal memorandum for record (MFR) describing the purpose of the domestic imagery and the component official approving the use should be retained on file. If obtained imagery specifically identifies a US person (include private property), then the rules and procedures contained in DoD 5240-1.R, in particular those regarding retention, must be followed. Air Force intelligence components must not conduct or give the appearance of conducting collection, exploitation or dissemination of commercial imagery or imagery associated products for other than approved mission purposes.

9.5. Distribution of Domestic Imagery. Distribution of domestic imagery to parties other than those identified in the approved PUM, DIR or MFR is prohibited, unless the recipient is reasonably perceived to have a specific, lawful governmental function requiring it IAW paragraph 11.4. Unless otherwise approved, domestic imagery must be withheld from all general access database systems (e.g., Intelink).