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BND Gablingen

Last modified: 18 Sep 2019
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Country: Germany    Region: Bav.

Locale: Gersthofen

Latitude: 48° 27' 3" N     Longitude: 10° 51' 46" E

Area use / Military Branches: Aktiv

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Former USAr Security Agency (USASA) Field Station Augsburg. Establihed in 1968 at Augsburg and a cadre assigned. USASA Field Station Augsburg became ops 1970, with an initial strength of 68 personnel and 5 companies. The AN/FLR-9 antenna http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/2d/Abh%C3%B6ranlage_Gablingen.JPG was installed at Gablingen. This was an HF radio directionfinder antenna (Wullenweber antenna) used to triangulate radio signals for radio navigation, intel gathering and SAR. Because its huge circular reflecting screen it looks like a circular fence. Wullenweber antennas were built at many locations during the cold war for HF/DF direction finding of hi-priority targets. A worldwide network, known as "Iron Horse", could locate HF communications almost anywhere! Due to their size and shape, these places were a.k.a. "Elephant Cages" or "Turkey Farms". The AN/FLR-9 permits accurate direction finding of signals from up to 4000 nautical miles (7408 km) away.

Personnel assigned were Morsecode, Teletype, Voice Intercept and Radio Direction Finding operators as well as Traffic Analysts and Cryptanalysis / Cryptanalytic Technicians.. As the station was interservice, it was manned up by Army,Air Force and Navy personnel. Their mission was monitoring and interpreting military comms of Cold War enemy nations and their allies around the world.

After formation of Intelligence and Security Command (INSCOM) in 1976, the station was redesignated USAr Field Station Augsburg, effective May 1977. The old ASA field stations remained stand-alone organizations directly subordinate to INSCOM HQ. In 1987, the units were redesignated again as 701st MI Brigade, with 711th, 712th, 713th, and 714th MI Battalions under command of 66th Military Intell Group.

The station remained ops until the fall of the Iron Curtain in 1993. US forces left the station in 1996 and turned it over to the BND the German Bundesnachrichtendienst. . In 1999 the US Army Intelligence and Security Command (INSCOM) and the US Army Europe (USAREUR) returned 66th Military Intelligence Group's Augsburg base to the German government. 66th MI Group and its 527 MI Battalion were transferred to Griesheim.
Current status: BND Signals Intelligence facility with these capabilities:
- Direction Finding and Plotting Fix Evaluation: Indentifying and pinpointing a location by several cross bearings
- Equipment Fingerprinting. A process to identify any radio transmitter or cellular phone by the unique "fingerprint" that characterizes its signal transmission. The electronic fingerprint makes it possible to identify a device by its unique radio transmission characteristics.

Verwendung unter BND-Führung http://www.heise.de/newsticker/meldung/BND-Standort-Gablingen-Die-grosse-Unbekannte-im-Mega-Metadatentausch-2825866.html

Zeit Online berichtete in 2015, dass in den BND-Außenstellen Schöningen, Rheinhausen, der Fernmeldeverkehrstelle des Bundesnachrichtendiensts in Bad Aibling und in der Abhöranlage Gablingen "Drehpünkt" jeden Tag 220 Millionen Metadaten einlaufen. Diese werden einige Monaten gespeichert und nach unbekannten Kriterien sortiert. Die Daten werden gesammelt und dazu genutzt, um Verdächtige zu beobachten und zu verfolgen. Die Anlage ist seit 2015 auch Teil des NSA-Untersuchungsausschusses. Tests des NSA-Programms XKeyscore in Gablingen wurden erst zurückgestellt aber später doch durchgeführt. Die in Gablingen erfasste Daten würden jetzt an die BND-Zentrale und an ausländische Nachrichtendienste (Five Eyes) durchgeleitet.


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