How are export control concerns addressed with respect to
- NPS business-related foreign travel?
- hand-carry of NPS business-related hardware?
- hand-carry of NPS laptop computers?
Foreign travel must be conducted in a manner consistent with U.S. Navy and NPS national
security policies, requirements and objectives including export control laws and regulations.
The sponsoring NPS Program/Center/Institute is required to take into consideration export
control concerns as part of their review process for all foreign travel. NPS Security currently reviews, for
concurrence, all foreign travel by NPS employees, students, and contractors to sensitive countries or travel
that will involve discussions of a DOD sensitive subject with any foreign national. The reviews are for both
sensitive subjects and export control. Additional guidance on foreign travel can be found at the NPS Security
Additional guidance on the Defense Travel System (DTS) can be found at
The hand-carry of personal or business-related equipment, parts, samples,
and non-commercial software by foreign travelers is generally discouraged because these items could be subject
to seizure or duties by customs. Such items should be shipped well ahead of time and only after any required
export control review.
At this time, cell phones and laptop computers containing commercially available
software (see note below) are generally accepted by customs world-wide as unrestricted personal use items.
Under Department of Commerce (DOC) regulations, as NPS employees, students, and contractors
embarking on business-related foreign travel, you are not required to complete a Shipper’s Export Declaration
Form for your laptop computer. However, you should be prepared to make an oral declaration to the U.S. Customs
inspector, if required. This declaration should convey that the laptop computer and any software contained within
is the property of NPS and being used in the performance of your duties. Of course, before leaving NPS, all laptop
computers must be reviewed and marked as U.S. Government property per NPS computer security requirements and only
contain non-sensitive data and software.
Additional provisions and country restrictions may apply to encrypted software as noted below:
NOTE: As NPS employees, students, and contractors going on foreign travel, you should be cognizant
of the strict regulations levied by a number of countries regarding the importation and use of software with advanced
encryption capability. Restrictions on encryption software such a ENTRUST, Pretty Good Privacy (PCP), similar
commercial software such as NETSCAPE (which allows secure connections to various sites), and software with the capability
to encrypt files or documents such as WINDOWS 2000 and beyond have been prohibited from being brought into some countries.
Violations could result in foreign authorities confiscating the software and computer it resides on. More severe (and
sometimes arbitrary) difficulties could occur, including fines and/or lengthy interrogation by foreign authorities.
These restrictions are often applied or removed on short or no notice. If you must carry such items, you are strongly
urged to contact your foreign host or the foreign country’s local consulate for current information before your scheduled