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Spy Words,
Codes & Terms
Home Spy Words, Terms and Codes
Here is a reference resource for all those spy codes and covert talk.

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  • C4I - Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence (C4I)
  • CALL-UP a police term meaning a situation where a SWAT team has deployed.
  • CAMP X - Canada's secret domestic training base.
  • CANNON a thief who steals back the inducement offered by the spies to an informant, defector, etc.
  • CARIBINIERI Italy's federal antiterrorist police.
  • CARNIVORE - computer program designed by the FBI to allow the FBI to collect electronic communications from a specific user targeted in an investigation.
  • CASE OFFICER operations officer, controller.
  • CBI India's security service.
  • CENTER - KGB HQ in Moscow
  • CHASE CAR a security detail or bodyguard vehicle that follows the subject.
  • CHEATING command of the target from in front of the target during floating box surveillance. See also COMMAND OF THE TARGET.
  • CHENG PAO K'O China's intelligence agency.
  • CHICKEN FEED low grade information fed through a double agent to one's adversary with the intention of building the credibility of the double agent.
  • CHOBETSU One of Japan's security services.
  • CIA a US intelligence agency.
  • CNT an acronym for crisis negotiation team. CNTs are used by police in situations involving hostage-takers or barricaded suspects. The name CNT is a misnomer their true role is not to negotiate, but rather to obtain intelligence to facilitate an assault by the SWAT team, and to distract the suspect to divert his attention from the coming assault.
  • COBBLER - a spy who creates false passports, visas, diplomas and other documents.
  • COMINT acronym for communications intelligence.
  • COMM a small note or other written communication from an underground organization or one of its members. They are typically written on cigarette wrappers, chewing gum wrappers, etc.
  • COMMAND OF THE TARGET active visual observation of the subject of the surveillance operation. Used during pedestrian and vehicle surveillance. See also CHEATING and FLOATING BOX.
  • COMMANDO a civilian, military, or paramilitary combat group using irregular tactics. Commando can refer to an individual, a cell, a squad, or the organization as a whole.
  • COMMIT a surveillance operative performing the commit function is watching a location to determine the direction that the target takes (or "commits" to).
  • COMPROMISED breached security status.
  • COMPUTER FORENSICS -  Investigation of a computer system believed to be involved in cybercrime. Also used in espionage to retrieve intelligence from stolen laptops or pcs.
  • CONG AN BO Vietnam's security service.
  • CONSUMER a person or an organization on an intelligence agency's distribution list. Also see PRODUCT.
  • COOKED a mixture of genuine and fake material provided via a double agent to one's adversary.
  • COUNTERESPIONAGE activities designed to impede the efforts of hostile intelligence agencies engaged in espionage against one's own nation, allies, and citizens.
  • COUNTERINTELLIGENCE activities designed to impede or thwart the efforts of hostile intelligence agencies attempting to penetrate or compromise one's own intelligence agency.
  • COUSINS slang for CIA.
  • COVER persona, profession, purpose, activity, fictitious image maintained by an undercover operative.
  • COVERT ACTION AGENT a spy who works to reorient an entire nation's politics in favor of his country.
  • CS GAS a form of tear gas, full name ortho-chlorobenzalmalanonitrile, used by cops, SWAT teams, and the military.
  • CSE Canada's signal intelligence agency, Communications Security Establishment. 
  • CSIS Canada's security service.
  • CUT-OUT a mechanism or person used to allow agents to pass material or messages securely; also an agent who functions as an intermediary between a spymaster and other subagents.
  • COURIER delivers documents, money, etc.


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