Canadian Forces Signals Intelligence Operations Centre (CFSOC)

History

The Canadian Forces Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) Operations Centre (CFSOC) is an outgrowth of former SIGINT units that have occupied the same lands in Ottawa South, since 1942. In that year, Number One Special Wireless Station took up residence there, from where it served Canada well through the end of the decade. In 1949, the unit was renamed Ottawa Wireless Station and then, with the advent of unification, in 1966, it was renamed again to Canadian Forces Station Leitrim. In 2006, a revitalization of Signals Intelligence capabilities and a concurrent expansion of Station support responsibilities, prompted authorities to stand-up a separate SIGINT Centre of Excellence, at CFS Leitrim. That Centre of Excellence is the “CFSOC.”

Mission
To operate and maintain signals intelligence collection and geolocation facilities in support of the national cryptologic programme and military operations;
To operate and maintain radio frequency direction finding facilities in support of search and rescue and other programs:
To maintain a capacity for the timely deployment of SIGINT forces and capabilities, in support of CF operational requirements.
Current Situation
CFSOC personnel perform the mission fully within the laws of Canada. An NDHQ Instruction DCDS 2/98 Guidance for the Conduct of Domestic Operations dated 10 July 1998 provides strict operational guidelines. This guidance applies to all military operations including the conduct of CFSOC’s operational mission.

The CFSOC’s Signals Intelligence capabilities (in compliance with Part V.1 of the NDA) are directed at foreign intelligence targets of interest. Its activities provide direct, timely support to Canadian and Allied military forces / operations and contribute to Government of Canada Intelligence Priorities. Moreover, as a CF centre of excellence, the CFSOC participates extensively in the coordination of military SIGINT requirements and services. All activities are conducted in accordance with governing statutes and direction, and the privacy of Canadian citizens, as well as other persons in Canada, are respected at all times.
Locations
The Canadian Forces Signals Intelligence Operations Centre is located at Canadian Forces Station Leitrim. Its capabilities are enhanced by a network of supporting coastal stations that include:

CFSOC Det Masset,
CFSOC Det Gander, and
CFS Alert.

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