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 localized area.
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.
In July 2014 it was reported that handheld shipping Image scanners manufactured in China were found with pre-installed, weaponized 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.
In different theaters of conflict:
- John Pike. "Air Interdiction--Focus For The Future". globalsecurity.org.
- Australian Government - Department of Immigration and Citizenship Annual report 2009-10 Archived 2014-02-13 at the Wayback Machine Page 152
- SPIEGEL ONLINE, Hamburg, Germany (29 December 2013). "Catalog Reveals NSA Has Back Doors for Numerous Devices". SPIEGEL ONLINE.
- Tom's Guide (15 July 2014). "China-Made Handheld Barcode Scanners Ship with Spyware".
- Supply Chain 24/7 (10 July 2014). "Malware Hidden In Chinese Inventory Scanners Targeting Logistics and Shipping Companies - Supply Chain 24/7".